Judges Announced as Submissions Open for 2021 Ockham NZ Book Awards
Booksellers, academics, lauded writers, an acclaimed designer and an award-winning journalist are among the 12 people selected to judge the 2021 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, which open for entries today.
The Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction, which offers $56,000 to the winner, will be judged by reviewer and bookseller Kiran Dass; books editor and award-winning feature writer Paul Little; and writer Claire Finlayson, former Programme Director of the Dunedin Writers & Readers Festival. They will be joined by an international judge, whose identity will be revealed in March 2021, to decide the ultimate winner from their shortlist of four.
Finalists and the ultimate winner in the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry will be selected by teacher and 2018 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalist Briar Wood (Te Hikutu ki Hokianga, Ngāpuhi Nui); teacher and award-winning poet and novelist Anne Kennedy; and professor of English at the University of Otago Jacob Edmond.
The General Non-Fiction Award will be judged by editor and associate professor of English at the University of Waikato Sarah Shieff; filmmaker and lecturer in Māori history at Victoria University Wellington Arini Loader (Ngāti Raukawa, Te Whānau-a-Apanui, Ngāti Whakaue); and Dunedin bookseller Michael Yeomans.
The Illustrated Non-Fiction Award will be judged by Dale Cousens (Ngāruahine)of the National Library of New Zealand; bookseller and former publisher Brian Phillips; and writer, multi-award-winning graphic designerand magazine art director Jenny Nicholls.
Paula Morris, chair of the Ockham New Zealand Books Awards sub-committee of governing body the New Zealand Book Awards Trust, says that the judges – who range geographically from Northland to Dunedin – represent a number of different fields, disciplines and perspectives.
“All bring their particular expertise and experience to the judging process, and will relish the challenge of reading for the Awards.”
The New Zealand Book Awards Trust is now inviting entries for the 2021 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. Titles with release dates between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020 will be considered for the 2021 awards.
Submissions for titles published between 1 January 2020 and 31 August 2020 are now open and will close 5pm on Monday 14 September 2020. Online entries for titles published between 1 September 2020 and 31 December 2020 open on Tuesday 15 September and close 5pm on Tuesday 27 October 2020.
For books in the second tranche, page proofs will be accepted if books publishing in November and December have not been printed at the time of the online submissions closing. In these cases, finished books must arrive with the Awards Administrator, Ockham New Zealand Book Awards c/- Auckland Writers Festival, Suite 9A Wellesley Centre, 44-52 Wellesley Street, Auckland 1010 no later than no later than 5pm on Thursday 26 November.
The judges will advise their longlist of up to 10 books per category on 28 January 2021 and the 2021 shortlist of 16 books will be announced on 3 March. The winners will be celebrated at an awards event at the Auckland Writers Festival in mid-May 2021.
The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are supported by Ockham Residential, Creative New Zealand, Jann Medlicott and the Acorn Foundation, Mary and Peter Biggs, MitoQ and the Auckland Writers Festival, and are administered by the Festival on behalf of the New Zealand Book Awards Trust.