The Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance announced finalists for the 2021 Maine Literary Awards on Thursday. The winners will be revealed May 27, when the awards are presented via Zoom, beginning at 7 p.m. Nearly 300 writers and publishers submitted works for consideration by more than 40 jurors.

The finalists:

Book Award for Crime Fiction
Claire Ackroyd, “Murder in the Maple Woods”
Bruce Robert Coffin, “Within Plain Sight”
Barbara Ross, “Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door”

Book Award for Fiction
Christina Baker Kline, “The Exiles”
Christopher Fahy, “Belief”
Meredith Hall, “Beneficence”
Jim Nichols, “Blue Summer”

Book Award for Nonfiction
Kerri Arsenault, “Mill Town”
Ernest Freeberg, “A Traitor to His Species”
Colin Woodard, “Union: The Struggle to Forge the Story”

Book Award for Memoir
Jennifer Finney Boylan, “Good Boy: My Life in Seven Dogs”
Kate Kennedy, “Skin: A Memoir”
Phuc Tran, “Sigh, Gone”

Book Award for Poetry
Megan Grumbling, “Persephone in the Late Anthropocene”
Éireann Lorsung, “The Century”
Wesley McNair, “Dwellers in the House of the Lord”

John N. Cole Award for Maine Nonfiction
Michael K. Komanecky, Jane Biano, and Angela Waldron, “Maine and American Art: The Farnsworth Art Museum”
Don Reimer, “Seen Anything Good?”
Peter Taylor (editor) and Kara Douglas, “From the Mountains to the Sea: The Historic Restoration of the Penobscot River”

Book Award for Young People’s Literature
Katie Coppens, “The Acadia Files: Spring Science”
Betty Culley, “Three Things I Know Are True”
Maria Padian, “How to Build a Heart”

Book Award for Children’s
Pat Davidson Reef, “David C. Driskell: Artist, Educator, Author”
Fran Hodgkins, “Thump Goes the Rabbitt”
Anica Mrose Rissi, “Love, Sophia on the Moon”

Book Award for Speculative Fiction
There are no finalists this year, but a winner will be announced at the ceremony.

Book Award for Excellence in Publishing
Amy Stacey Curtis, “9 Solo Biennials,” Self Published
Margaret Hathaway and Karl Schatz, “Maine Bicentennial Community Cookbook,” Islandport Press
Joshua Klein, “Another Work is Possible,” Mortise & Tenon

Book Award for Anthology
Claire Millikin and Agnes Bushell, “ENOUGH! Poems of Resistance”
Kathryn Olmstead, “Stories of Aroostook”
The Telling Room (editors), “A New Land: 30 Groundbreaking Poems by Youth Poets”

Drama Award
Suzanne d’Corsey, “Eros”
Travis Baker, “Hockey Mom”
Jayne Decker, “Ruby Red (a moment in the life of)”

Short Works Competition in Fiction
Shannon Bowring, “Romance”
Brandon Dudley, “Between the Bridge and the River”
Morgan Talty, “The Blessing Tobacco”

Short Works Competition in Nonfiction
Parker Blaney, “Detox”
Lesley Heiser, “Butterfly”
Laura Poppick, “The Maine Farmer Saving the World’s Rarest Heirloom Seeds”
Sarah Twombly, “What We Want is Simple”

Short Works Competition in Poetry
Judy Kaber, “What My Father Says About Brooklyn and 4 Other Poems”
Suzanne Langlois, “What Lasts”
W. Kent Olson, “Common Cause and Other Poems”

Award for a High School Literary Magazine
No award will be given this year but honorable mentions will be announced at the ceremony.

Youth Competition in Fiction
Leigh Ellis, “A Ghost’s Bucket List”
Alexa Barstow, “Windswept”
Alexa Barstow, “Onward”

Youth Competition in Nonfiction
Nina Chase, “Forest Journal”
Si Ting Chen “All I Can See”
Amira Doale, “Jasmine and Clementine”

Youth Competition in Poetry
Clara Bossi, “An Unnatural View, Cedars Still Growing”
Leigh Ellis, “Green Christmas”
Hazel Dow, “Sail-Away Stories”

This story was updated at 12:17 p.m. May 7 to correct the name of the editor of “From the Mountains to the Sea.”


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