Oregon Book Award

Last updated
Oregon Book Award
Awarded forLiterary excellence
CountryUnited States
Presented by Literary Arts and Oregon
First awarded1987
Website Literary-arts.org

The Oregon Book Awards are presented annually by the Portland, Oregon, United States-based organization Literary Arts, Inc. to honor the "state’s finest accomplishments by Oregon writers who work in genres of poetry, fiction, graphic literature, drama, literary nonfiction, and literature for young readers." [1]


Oregon Book Award was founded in 1987 by Brian Booth and Oregon Institute for Literary Arts (OILA). [2] [3] In 1993, Literary Arts, Inc., a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of Oregonians through language and literature, joined with the OILA and continued to support and promote Oregon's authors with the book awards and Oregon Literary Fellowships. Award winners are selected based solely on literary merit by out-of-state judges who change each year.

In 2005, the award ceremony was moved from Portland's Scottish Rite Center to the Wonder Ballroom, in an effort to make it more lively and fun. [4] Since 2009, the awards ceremony has been held at the Gerding Theatre at the Armory, the home of Portland Center Stage. [5]


Book Awards

Stafford/Hall Award for Poetry

1987Seal RockJohn Haislip
1988Singing the Mozart Requiem Ingrid Wendt
1989The Admiration'sLex Runciman
1990DreamerPrimus St. John
1990Toluca Street Maxine Scates
1991Psyche Drives the CoastSharon Doubiago
1992Selected Poems Vern Rutsala
1993A Book of Other DaysLisa M. Steinman
1994LaudsTom Crawford
1995Poem Rising Out of the Earth and Standing Up in SomeoneJames Grabill
1996Journeyman's Wages Clemens Starck
1997Drawing the Line Lawson Fusao Inada
1998Cocktails with Brueghel at the Museum Café Sandra Stone
1999Ruining the PicturePimone Triplett
2000Passion Judith Montgomery
2001The Evening Light Floyd Skloot
2002In The Margins Of The World Willa Schneberg
2003The Play of Dark and LightRita Ott Ramstad
2004Men Holding EggsHenry Hughes
2005LeavingLaton Carter
2006Facts About the Moon Dorianne Laux
2007The Sky PositionTom Blood
2008A is for Anne: Mistress Hutchinson Disturbs the Commonwealth Penelope Scambly Schott
2009/2010All-American Poem Matthew Dickman
2011The Book of Men and Women David Biespiel
2012Curses And Wishes Carl Adamshick
2013Fjords Vol. 1 Zachary Schomburg
2014Incarnadine Mary Szybist
2015Sorrow Arrow Emily Kendal Frey
2016Saint Friend Carl Adamshick
2017When We Were Birds Joe Wilkins
2018Field Theories Samiya Bashir
2019Small Gods Matthew Minicucci
2020Spectra Ashley Toliver
2021Hope of Stones Anna Elkins
2022Instrument Dao Strom
2023Mouth, Sugar, and Smoke Eric Tran
2024Chorus Daniela Naomi Molnar

Award for Fiction

1987Resurrectionists Russell Working
1988Within Normal LimitsTodd Grimson
1989Cardinal Numbers Hob Broun
1990The Jump-off Creek Molly Gloss
1991(no award given)
1992Searoad Ursula K. Le Guin
1993 Dreams Like Thunder Diane Simmons
1994 Arabian Jazz Diana Abu-Jaber
1995 Native Speaker Chang-Rae Lee
1996What Falls Away Tracy Daugherty
1997 Fight Club Chuck Palahniuk
1998The Ugliest House in the World Peter Ho Davies
1999Like Never Before Ehud Havazelet
2000Storm Riders Craig Lesley
2001Throwing KnivesMolly Best Tinsley
2002The Necessary Grace to Fall: Stories Gina Ochsner
Ken Kesey Award for the Novel
2003His Mother's SonCai Emmons
2004Axeman's Jazz Tracy Daugherty
2005 How I Paid for College: A Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship, and Musical Theater Marc Acito
2006The Best People in the World: A Novel Justin Tussing
2007Twenty QuestionsAlison Clement
Ken Kesey Award for Fiction
2008Bearing the Body Ehud Havazelet
2009/2010Livability: Stories Jon Raymond
2011 Lean on Pete Willy Vlautin
2012 The Sisters Brothers Patrick deWitt
2013ShardsIsmet Prcic
2014The Unreal and The Real: Collected Stories, Vols. 1 and 2 Ursula K. Le Guin
2015The Revolution of Every DayCari Luna
2016The Small Backs of Children Lidia Yuknavitch
2017A Great Length of TimeJoyce Cherry Cresswell
2018 American War Omar El Akkad
2019Red Clocks Leni Zumas
2020No God like the Mother Kesha Ajọsẹ Fisher
2021 The Great Offshore Grounds Vanessa Veselka
2022 What Strange Paradise Omar El Akkad
2023Seeking Fortune Elsewhere: Stories Sindya Bhanoo
2024The Librarianist Patrick deWitt
H. L. Davis Award for Short Fiction
1998The Ugliest House in the World Peter Ho Davies
1999Like Never BeforeEhud Havazelet
2000Storm RidersCraig Lesley
2001Throwing KnivesMolly Best Tinsley
2002The Necessary Grace to Fall Gina Ochsner
2003It Takes a Worried Man Tracy Daugherty
2004Saving StanleyScott Nadelson
2005Resistance Barry Lopez
2006People I Wanted to Be Gina Ochsner
2007The Dead Fish Museum Charles D'Ambrosio

Award for Literary Nonfiction

1987Arctic Dreams Barry Lopez
1988Faces of a ReservationCynthia Stowell
1989A Golden Journey Luther Cressman
1990Baja JourneyRobin Carey
1991 Wings for My Flight / My Country, My Right to Serve Marcy Cottrell Houle / Mary Ann Humphrey (tie)
1992No Duty to RetreatRichard M. Brown
1993The Trail HomeJohn Daniel
1994Stubborn Twig Lauren Kessler
1995Voyage of a Summer Sun Robin Cody
1996Volcano Garrett Hongo
1997Looking AfterJohn Daniel
1998Making It HomeLars Nordström
1999The Left Hand of EdenWilliam Ashworth
2000The Night GardenerMarjorie Sandor
2001When Broken Glass FloatsChanrithy Him
2002My Wars Are Laid Away in BooksAlfred Habegger
Frances Fuller Victor Award for General Nonfiction
2003Dispatches and Dictators: Ralph Barnes for the Herald TribuneBarbara S. Mahoney
2004In Search of Ancient OregonEllen Morris Bishop
2005Plague and Fire: Battling Black Death and the 1900 Burning of Honolulu's ChinatownJames C. Mohr
2006Modern Passings: Death Rites, Politics, and Social Change in Imperial JapanAndrew Bernstein
2007Democracy Reborn: The Fourteenth Amendment and the Fight for Equal Rights in Post-Civil War America Garrett Epps
2008One Night in America: Robert Kennedy, Cesar Chavez, and the Dream of DignitySteven W. Bender
2009/2010Hiding Man: A Biography of Donald Barthelme Tracy Daugherty
2011Savages and ScoundrelsPaul VanDevelder
2012Imperial Japan At Its Zenith: The Wartime Celebration Of The Empire's 2600th AnniversaryKenneth J. Ruoff
2013 The Wrecking Crew: The Inside Story of Rock and Roll's Best-Kept Secret Kent Hartman
2014Duel with the DevilPaul Collins
2015Big Little Man: In Search of My Asian Self Alex Tizon
2016A Long High Whistle David Biespiel
2017The Last Love Song: A Biography of Joan DidionTracy Daugherty
2018Fish MarketLee van der Voo
2019Dangerous Subjects: James D. Saules and the Rise of Black Exclusion in OregonKenneth R. Coleman
2020Aloha Rodeo: Three Hawaiian Cowboys, the World’s Greatest Rodeo, and a Hidden History of the American West David Wolman and Julian Smith
2021The Fire Is upon Us: James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr., and the Debate over Race in AmericaNicholas Buccola
2022The Wretched Atom: America’s Global Gamble with Peaceful Nuclear TechnologyJacob Darwin Hamblin
2023Free: Two Years, Six Lives, and the Long Journey HomeLauren Kessler
2024Where We Call Home: Lands, Seas, and Skies of the Pacific NorthwestJosephine Woolington
Sarah Winnemucca Award for Creative Nonfiction
2003Providence of a SparrowChris Chester
2003In The Shadow Of Memory Floyd Skloot
2004The Stuff of Life Karen Karbo
2005The Pine Island Paradox Kathleen Dean Moore
2006When the River Ran Wild! Indian Traditions on the Mid-Columbia and the Warm Springs Reservation George W. Aguilar
2007The Things Between UsLee Montgomery
2008Dancing with Rose: Finding Life in the Land of Alzheimer's Lauren Kessler
2009/2010Convictions: A Prosecutor’s Battles Against Mafia Killers, Drug Kingpins, and Enron Thieves John Kroger
2011The Far CornerJohn Daniel
2012The Shape Of The Eye: Down Syndrome, Family, And The Stories We InheritGeorge Estreich
2013Crazy Enough Storm Large
2014WedlockedJay Ponteri
2015The Great Floodgates of the Wonderworld Justin Hocking
2016Objects in Mirror Are Closer Than They AppearKate Carroll de Gutes
2017 Angels With Dirty Faces Walidah Imarisha
2018Animals Strike Curious Poses Elena Passarello
2019The Gospel of TreesApricot Irving
2020Anxious AttachmentsBeth Alvarado
2021Yellow Bird: Oil, Murder, and a Woman’s Search for Justice in Indian CountrySierra Crane Murdoch
2022Plastic: An AutobiographyAllison Cobb
2023Diary of a Misfit: A Memoir and a MysteryCasey Parks
2024Wolfish: Wolf, Self, and the Stories We Tell About FearErica Berry

Angus L. Bowmer Award for Drama

1988The Second Coming of Joan of Arc Carolyn Gage
1989Holding PatternsDan Duling
1990Five Minute WarsSharon Whitney
1992The Disappearance and Death of Amelia Earhart E. J. Westlake
1994A Pirate's LullabyJessica Litwak
1996Picasso in the Backseat Dmae Roberts
1997Drawing Down ClioDoug Baldwin
1998Freud's GirlsDori Appel
1999The Lunatic WithinDori Appel
2000WonderbroadsMelinda Pittman
2001Lost and FoundDori Appel
2004Vitriol and VioletsShelly Lipkin, Louanne Moldovan, and Sherry Lamoreaux
2006Arthur's DreamsRichard Moeschl
2008Lost WavelengthsSteve Patterson
2011The Lost BoySusan Mach
2013Antarktikos Andrea Stolowitz
2015IthakaAndrea Stolowitz
2017Words That Burn Cindy Williams Gutiérrez
2019Successful StrategiesAndrea Stolowitz
2021You Cannot Undo This ActionConor Eifler
2023The StorytellerSara Jean Accuardi

Award for Young Readers Literature

1990Dragon's MilkSusan Fletcher
1991Four Dollars and Fifty Cents Eric Kimmel
1992The Striped Ships Eloise McGraw
1993Blue Skin of the Sea Graham Salisbury
1994 Make Lemonade Virginia Euwer Wolff
1995 Under the Blood Red Sun Graham Salisbury
1996Journey of the Red Wolf Roland Smith
1997 The Moorchild Eloise McGraw
1998Shark BaitGraham Salisbury
1999A Voice from the BorderPamela Smith Hill
2000The Gate in the WallEllen Howard
2001True BelieverVirginia Euwer Wolff
Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children's Literature
2003Three Samurai Cats Eric Kimmel
2004LubaMichelle McCann
2005Cave Paintings to PicassoHenry Sayre
2006Tour AmericaDiane Siebert
2007Not in Room 204Shannon Riggs
2008A Day With No Crayons Elizabeth Rusch
2009/2010Keep On! The Story of Matthew Henson, Co-discoverer of the North Pole Deborah Hopkinson
2011Calvin Coconut: The Zippy Fix Graham Salisbury
2012Calvin Coconut: Hero Of HawaiiGraham Salisbury
2013Drawing From Memory Allen Say
2014Calvin Coconut: Extra FamousGraham Salisbury
2015Whistle in the DarkSusan Hill Long
2016With a Friend by Your SideBarbara Kerley
2017Hannah and SugarKate Berube
2018The Tragically True Adventures of Kit DonovanPatricia Bailey
2019The TurningEmily Whitman
2020Lowriders: Blast from the Past Cathy Camper
2021A Game of Fox and Squirrels Jenn Reese
2022Taylor Before and After Jennie Englund
2023Friends Are Friends, Forever Dane Liu
2024Too Early Nora Ericson
Leslie Bradshaw Award for Young Adult Literature
2002 Empress of the World Sara Ryan
2003The Voyage of Patience GoodspeedHeather Vogel Frederick
2004DeepSusanna Vance
2005A Heart for Any Fate Linda Crew
2006 Eyes of the Emperor Graham Salisbury
2007 Alphabet of Dreams Susan Fletcher
2008 The Rules for Hearts Sara Ryan
2008A Taste for RabbitLinda Zuckerman
2009/2010I.Q. Book One: Independence Hall Roland Smith
2011The Last Great Getaway of the Water Balloon Boys Scott William Carter
2012WildwingEmily Whitman
2013Blue ThreadRuth Tenzer Feldman
2014The Theory of EverythingKari Luna
2015The Body In the Woods April Henry
2016Martin MartenBrian Doyle
2017Courage & Defiance: Stories of Spies, Saboteurs, and Survivors in World War II DenmarkWest Linn
2018 Strange the Dreamer Laini Taylor
2019 The Wicked Deep Shea Ernshaw
2020How I Became A Spy: A Mystery of WWII London Deborah Hopkinson
2021The Sullivan Sisters Kathryn Ormsbee
2022The Dead and the Dark Courtney Gould
2023Dream, Annie, Dream Waka T. Brown
2024The Very Unfortunate Wish of Melony Yoshimura Waka T. Brown

Pacific Northwest College of Art Graphic Literature Award

2012 Footnotes in Gaza Joe Sacco
2014Hereville: How Mirka Met a MeteoriteBarry Deutsch
2016The Zoo BoxAriel Cohn and Aron Nels Steinke
2018Fetch: How A Bad Dog Brought Me Home Nicole J. Georges
2020Penny Nichols Greg Means and M. K. Reed
2022Trespassers Breena Bard
2024The Faint of Heart Kerilynn Wilson

Readers Choice Award

2011 Lean on Pete Willy Vlautin
2012The Chronology Of Water Lidia Yuknavitch
2013 Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail Cheryl Strayed
2014 The Orchardist Amanda Coplin
2015 The Free Willy Vlautin
2016The Small Backs of Children: A NovelLidia Yuknavitch
2017A Series of Small ManeuversEliot Treichel
2018Fetch: How A Bad Dog Brought Me Home Nicole J. Georges
2019Ladder to the LightBeth Wood

Special Awards

1988: William Everson
1989: George Venn
1990: Mary Barnard
1991: Don James
1992: Paul Pintarich
1994: Ralph Friedman
1995: Wilma Erwin

Charles Erskine Scott Wood Distinguished Writer Award

1987: George Belknap
1988: Dorothy Johansen
1989: Vi Gale
1990: Janet Stevenson
1991: Walt Morey
1992: Terence O'Donnell
1993: Alvin M. Josephy, Jr.
1994: Earl Pomeroy
1995: Damon Knight
1996: Eloise McGraw
1998: Priscilla Knuth
1999: Ken Kesey
2003: George Hitchcock
2006: Ursula K. Le Guin
2008: Barry Lopez
2014: Vern Rutsala
2015: Ralph Salisbury
2017: Jarold Ramsey
2020: Lawson Fusao Inada
2021: Molly Gloss

Stewart H. Holbrook Literary Legacy Award

1987: Northwest Review
1988: Calyx, A Journal of Art & Literature
1989: Katharine McCanna
1990: Sandra Williams
1991: Walt Curtis
1992: Clyde Rice
1993: Penny Avila
1994: George Venn
1995: Tom Ferte
1996: Brian Booth
1997: Ruth Gundle & Judith Barrington
1998: Dennis & Linny Stovall
1999: Peter Sears
2000: Rich Wandschneider
2001: Erik Muller
2002: Carla Perry
2003: David Hedges
2004: David Milholland
2005: Barbara LaMorticella
2006: Paulann Petersen
2007: Kim Stafford
2008: Marlene Howard
2009: Matt Love
2011: John Laursen
2013: Larry Colton
2014: Vince & Patty Wixon
2015: Tom Spanbauer
2016: Douglas Spangle
2017: The Independent Publishing Resource Center
2018: Tracey Daugherty and Marjorie Sandor
2019: José González
2020: Write Around Portland
2021: Elizabeth Lyon
2023: Gary Miranda
2024: Ellen Waterston

Walt Morey Young Readers Literary Legacy Award

1998: Barbara J. McKillip
1999: Claudia Jones
2000: Cathy Schneider
2001: Oregon advisory boards of First Book
2002: Ready to Learn
2003: Jerry Isom
2004: Patricia R. Gallagher
2005: Carol Brown
2006: John Monteverde
2007: Mark Mizell
2008: Young Writers Association
2009: The Dove Lewis Read to the Dogs Program
2011: The Children's Book Bank
2012: Ulrich Hardt
2013: Oregon Battle of the Books
2014: Ellen Fader
2015: Jann Tankersley
2016: Curtis Kiefer
2017: The SMART (Start Making A Reader Today) Program
2018: Carmen T. Bernier-Grand
2020: Reading Results
2021: PlayWrite, Inc.
2023: Dawn Babb Prochovnic

Literary Fellowships

C. Hamilton Bailey Fellowship in Poetry

2018: Matthew Minicucci
2019: Pamela K. Santos
2020: Alicia Jo Rabins
2021: Amy Miller

Edna L. Homes Fellowship in Young Readers

2018: Erica A. Briggs
2019: Amy Baskin
2020: Kelly Garrett
2021: Shana Targosz

Fellowship in Fiction

2018: Omar El Akkad and Adair V

Fellowship in Poetry

2018: manuel arturo abreu, Danielle Cadena Deulen, and Milo R. Muise

Fellowship in Publishing

2018: Clackamas Literary Review and Pacifica: Poetry International
2019: Atelier 26 Books and Opossum: A Literary Marsupial
2020: Fonograf Editions and Octopus Books
2021: Forest Avenue Press and Northwest Review

Fellowship in Nonfiction

2018: Elizabeth Enslin, Susan Shepard, and Brian Trapp
2019: Sterling Cunio and Justin Taylor
2020: Garet Lahvis

Laurell Swails and Donald Monroe Memorial Fellowship in Fiction

2018: Takashi L. Kendrick and Mika Tanner
2019: Ana-Maurine Lara and Chris Stuck
2020: Cynthia L. Brown and Taylor Koekkoek
2021: Pedro Hoffmeister and Emily Woodworth

Leslie Bradshaw Fellowship

2018: Alberto Yáñez (for nonfiction)
2019: Chelsea Biondolillo (for nonfiction)
2020: Rachael Carnes (for drama)
2021: Sara Jean Accuardi (for drama)

Oregon Arts Commission Fellowship

2018: Jacob Aiello and Jake Vermaas
2019: Karen Luper and Marcus Lund
2020: Marjorie Celona and Gabriel Urza

Oregon Literary Career Fellowship

2020: Beth Alvarado and Dao Strom
2021: Annie Sheppard and Sandy Tanaka

Oregon Poetry Community Fellowship

2019: Jennifer Perrine
2021: Alyssa Ogi

Walt Morey Fellowship

2018: Cindy Baldwin (for drama)
2019: Stacy Brewster (for drama)
2020: Jamie Cooper (for poetry)
2021: Scott Korb (for nonfiction)

Women Writers Fellowship

2018: Naomi Ulsted
2019: Natalie Hirt
2020: Eliza Rotterman
2021: A. M. Rosales

Writers of Color Fellowship

2018: Reema Zaman
2019: Christopher Rose
2020: Olufunke Grace Bankole
2021: Kesha Ajose-Fisher

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  1. "Oregon Book Awards and Fellowships" . Retrieved 19 May 2019.
  2. Pintarich, Paul (October 3, 1987). "Book awards event at arts center honors Oregon writers". The Oregonian.
  3. Pintarich, Paul (September 27, 1987). "Goldschmidt, Clark proclaim writers' week". The Oregonian.
  4. Baker, Jeff (November 11, 2005). "Book awards get a new cover". The Oregonian.
  5. Baker, Jeff (October 27, 2009). "Oregon Book Awards honor new writers, veteran winners". The Oregonian.