Nominations now being accepted for the 19th Annual Minnesota Book Awards

The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library has opened nominations for the 19th Annual Minnesota Book Awards, honoring the state's finest authors, illustrators, publishers and other literary contributors. Eight categories have been established to recognize and celebrate the best in Minnesota literature: Autobiography Memoir & Creative Nonfiction; Children's Literature; Fine Press; General Nonfiction; Genre Fiction; Novel & Short Story; Poetry; and Young Adult Literature.

Anyone may nominate a book for a Minnesota Book Award, although a $30 fee, five copies of the book and a completed form are required for entry. Nominators may include, but are not limited to authors, publishers and agents. Nomination forms and the eligibility and entry guidelines are available online at www.thefriends.org. The deadline for submission of nominations is 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 15. Winners will be announced at the 19th Annual Minnesota Book Awards event on Saturday, May 5, 2007. at the Crowne Plaza Hotel - St. Paul Riverfront. Ticket information for the awards celebration will be available in 2007.

In September, the Capital City consortium of The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library, the St. Paul Public Library and the office of the mayor of St. Paul became the new host for the Book Awards, with The Friends taking the lead role in administering the program. The Book Awards, which began in 1988 during a weeklong literary festival sponsored by The Friends, were administered for the past seven years by the Minnesota Humanities Commission. Building on a strong book Awards tradition of outreach throughout Minnesota. The Friends is partnering with the state's many literary and library networks, including the Minnesota Library Association (MLA) and the Metropolitan Library Service Agency (MELSA), to ensure continued statewide involvement and recognition.

"Over the past 18 years, the Minnesota Book Awards program has grown to become the premier avenue for recognizing outstanding literary contributions made by individuals and organizations throughout our state," said Peter Pearson, president of The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library. "Working with our many partners, we look forward to bringing even greater awareness to Minnesota's rich literary culture through this important celebration."

For additional information about the Minnesota book Awards, contact The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library at 222-3242, mnbookawards@thefriends.org, or www.thefriends.org.

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