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About the Awards
2022 Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction winner Whiti Hereaka
with Fiction judge Rob Kidd, Eboni Waitere of Huia Publishers
and Jann Medlicott (far right)

About the Awards

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are the country’s premier literary honours for books written by New Zealanders. First established in 1968 as the Wattie Book Awards (later the Goodman Fielder Wattie Book Awards), they have also been known as the Montana New Zealand Book Awards and the New Zealand Post Book Awards. Awards are given for Fiction (the Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction), Poetry (the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry), Illustrated Non-Fiction (the Booksellers Aotearoa New Zealand Award for Illustrated Non-Fiction) and General Non-Fiction. There are also four awards for first-time authors (the Crystal Arts Trust Best First Book awards) and, at the judges’ discretion, Te Mūrau o te Tuhi, a Māori Language Award.

The awards are governed by the New Zealand Book Awards Trust (a registered charity). Current members of the Trust are Nicola Legat, Garth Biggs, Paula Morris, Jenna Todd, Anne Morgan, Melanee Winder, Melinda Szymanik and Richard Pamatatau. The Trust also governs the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults and Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day.

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