The winners of the 2022 High Plains Book Awards will be announced at a ceremony on Saturday October 8. The event, free and open to the public, will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Petro Theater on the Montana State University Billings campus. .
Earlier today, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., in the Billings Public Library Community Hall, there will be a book sale featuring the finalists for this year’s awards, along with a few other books from the represented authors. Throughout the afternoon, many finalists will participate in a series of roundtables in the community room of the library, also free and open to all.
The 2022 awards feature 13 book categories: Art & Photography, Children’s Book, Fiction, First Book, Indigenous Writer, Non-Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction, Poetry, Medicine & Science, Short Stories, Female Writer, Young Adult, and Big Awards. Sky.
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Each of the panels will include approximately half an hour of moderated discussion, followed by time for audience questions and answers and book signings. Here is an overview of the roundtables and the authors who will participate:
Noon to 1 p.m.: Is a picture really worth a thousand words? — Exploration of the visual aspects of adult books, with David Horgan, Kirby Lambert, Dale Leckie, Jon Lodge and Gordon McConnell
1 p.m. to 2 p.m.: Writing About True Events — Determining When a Story’s Fiction Makes Sense, featuring Claire Boyles, Melissa Cook, Larry Lee Kruckenberg, Caroline Patterson and Tom Vandel.
2 p.m. to 3 p.m.: Books as Our Social Conscience — Discussing Literature as a Medium of Awareness, with Arnolda Dufour Bowes, Chase Reynolds Ewald, Audrey Hall, Jacqueline Keeler, David Romtvedt and Todd Wilkinson
3 p.m. to 4 p.m.: Does gender matter in storytelling? – Examining how storytelling varies across genres and what that means, with Juliana Clayton, Wendy J. Fox, Louise B. Halfe-Sky Dancer, Craig Johnson, Kase Johnstun and Craig Lancaster.
4 p.m. to 5 p.m.: Writing for Young People — Considering What’s Different About Writing for Younger Audiences, featuring Megan E. Freeman, Lorna Schultz Nicholson, Barbara Nickel and Sharon Plumb
The Billings Public Library Board established the High Plains Book Awards in 2006 to recognize regional authors and/or literary works that examine and reflect life on the High Plains. The High Plains region includes Montana, North and South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas, and the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan.
Winners will receive a cash prize of $500.
All nominated books are read and rated by community readers, who choose the finalists. Winners in each category are determined by a panel of judges with ties to the High Plains region, comprised of published writers, teachers, and other experts in their fields.