Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Busy at BPAA

Friday, September 16, 2016 was the Book Publishers Association of Alberta Awards Gala at the Hotel Arts in Calgary. 

These awards have been in existence since 1989, with slight fluctuations in the number and focus of categories over the years. They used to be presented along with the Writers Guild of Alberta awards each spring, but now are attached to the book publishers' fall conference.

Although the gala is mainly for publishers, Tyche Books invited me along as my Steampunk Adventure, Maddie Hatter and the Deadly Diamond, was a finalist for the Children's/YA Award. 

Tyche had another finalist in the same category: Simon Rose's Flashback.

Will Ferguson, the keynote speaker, was entertaining as always. I first ran across him many years ago at the Saskatchewan Festival of Words in Moose Jaw, and hearing him talk about his in-spa interview with Sheila Rogers was enough to make me choke on my raspberry sorbet.

But of course everyone was there for the awards.  Publishers submit works which the juries have about two months to evaluate, coming up with shortlists and winners. Here, books are judged on more than the writing within. You'll see categories below including book design and cover design, as well as illustration, and categories are broken out by kind of publisher as well as genre of book.

Here, in pictures, is the rundown of finalists with the winners checked off.

 Of special note is the number of votes for the Alberta Readers' Choice Award, up 30% over last year.

Congratulations to all the winners and finalists!

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