2015 Zia Book Award

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An outstanding New Mexican writer will be honored for her work in non-fiction next spring when her book receives the prestigious Zia Award given by New Mexico Press Women.

New Mexico women writers are invited to submit their non-fiction books for consideration of the award, given each year at the annual New Mexico Press Women spring conference luncheon. The 2015 conference luncheon will be held April 25, 2015 at Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu, New Mexico. Finalists are required to attend the award luncheon to read from their work.

Each year the award rotates to one of three categories: non-fiction, fiction and children’s literature. To accommodate this schedule, a book published in the last three years is eligible. Any non-fiction book published in 2012, 2013 or 2014 will be accepted for consideration of the 2015 Zia Award.

Publishers or authors may submit a book entry. Membership in the association is not required, but the writer must be a woman. Authors must also live in the state, or have a strong connection to New Mexico, however the book can be published anywhere. The entry fee is $25 per book.

For consideration please submit:

  • A cover letter with contact information (include email) containing the following:
    • Author’s biography
    • Author’s connection to New Mexico
    • Description of the book
  • A copy of the book
  • A check for $25, payable to “New Mexico Press Women.”

Mail to the following address:
Jessica Savage
Zia Award Contest Chair
1612 Ralph Dr.
Las Cruces, NM 88001

Online entry fees can be paid using PayPal.

Entries must be postmarked by Saturday, Jan. 17, 2015.
An acknowledgement letter will be emailed upon receipt of the entry.

Book entries are considered a donation to the organization and are not returned. The books will be part of the silent auction, held at the annual spring awards banquet, to raise scholarship funds.

For more information on the contest please send correspondence to the address listed above or email at: jsavage@cybermesa.com.

 

Zia Award Recognizes Four Outstanding Children’s Book Authors

Four outstanding New Mexico women writers were honored for their work in children’s books on Saturday, April 26, at the Hotel Encanto, in Las Cruces. The 2014 Zia Book Award winners were Paige Grant for the picture book Kitten Caboodle, illustrated by Lisa Williams, and Laura Sanchez for the young adult novel Freaking Green. Honorable Mentions were awarded to picture book author Ana Baca for Tia’s Tamales, illustrated by Noël Chilton, and Anne Weaver for the youth book Children of Time: Evolution and the Human Story, illustrated by Matt Celeskey.

The award is presented by New Mexico Press Women. The awards were presented during the organization’s annual conference, “From Grassroots to the Final Frontier.”

WINNING BOOKS AND THEIR AUTHORS

Kitten Caboodle by Paige Grant (illustrated by Lisa Williams; Azro Press)

“Cute story, well told. The message is strong and important, and the illustrations are wonderful!” wrote one of the judges.

After retiring as a hydrologist, Paige Grant, along with her husband, became an active volunteer with the Santa Fe Animal Shelter, serving as foster caregivers to adult animals that needed some loving kindness to get over their fear of people, and puppies and kittens that needed a safe, happy place to grow until they got big enough to be spayed or neutered and adopted into a forever home.

Freaking Green by Laura Sanchez

“Good story in many regards, with a likeable main character,” wrote one of the judges.

After running a design and drafting business specializing in energy efficient houses, Laura Sanchez began writing nonfiction books about computer graphics and architecture. Then for several years, she wrote about politics, books, and environmental issues for the Weekly Alibi and about housing for Su Casa magazine. Freaking Green is her first novel. Her second novel, Killer Miracle, was released this past January.

Tia’s Tamales by Ana Baca (illustrated by Noël Chilton; UNM Press)

“An engagint bilingual tale with magical connections between several generations of a family,” wrote one of the judges.

Ana Baca lives in Albuquerque and has also written a novel, Mama Fela’s Girls, about life in northeastern New Mexico during the Great Depression.

Children of Time: Evolution and the Human Story by Anne Weaver (illustrated by Matt Celeskey; UNM Press)

“Excellent book on human evolution. The science comes to life with its fictional characterizations,” wrote on judge.

Anne Weaver holds a Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of New Mexico. She taught evolutionary anthropology at Santa Fe Community College for many years. She is now a full-time writer living in Santa Fe.

JUDGES

Each entry was read by two of the following judges:

Betsy James is the author and illustrator of sixteen books for adults and children. Among other honors, her books have been named: New York Public Library Best Book for Teens; Voices of Youth Advocates Best Book; Junior Library Guild Selection; Canadian Children’s Book Center Best Book; International Reading Association Children’s Choice; and Tiptree Award Honor Book.

Carol Kreis’s career includes working as an educator in pre-school through college settings, serving as the public relations coordinator at the Rio Grande Zoo, and as a writer and researcher of educational materials for the Newsweek Education Program. She managed the Newspapers-in-Education program for the Albuquerque Journal and the Tribune and was a founding co-director of the Rio Grande Writing Project at the University of New Mexico.

Shelley Olson holds a Master’s degree in Special Education and an endorsement in English as a Second Language. She earned the New Mexico Quality of Education award in 1993 for the best middle school program of the state later won other awards for teaching many middle school students with diverse needs.

Robert Spiegel’s poetry and fiction have been published widely over three decades. His first published piece was children’s fiction in 1975. For ten years he owned a publishing company that published Chile Pepper magazine as well as books, including children’s books. He also writes drama, writes a blog on spirituality, and reviews plays for Talkin’ Broadway. He is the author of six books.

ZIA AWARD

The Zia Award was started in 1953 to honor an outstanding woman in New Mexico media. Each year the award rotates to one of three categories: nonfiction, fiction, and children’s literature.

The 2015 Zia Book Award will be given to the author of an outstanding nonfiction book published in 2012, 2013 or 2014. Details will be posted on NMPW’s Web site in the fall.

Children’s book entries sought for N.M. women writers contest

An outstanding New Mexican writer will be honored for her work next spring when her children’s book receives the prestigious Zia Award.

New Mexican women writers are invited to submit their books for consideration for the award, given each year by New Mexico Press Women at the annual spring conference. To be eligible to receive the award, selected winners must commit to reading at the award luncheon during the 2014 conference in April.

For more information go to the Zia Book Award page or download the press release.

Fiction book entries sought for N.M. women writers contest

An outstanding New Mexican writer will be honored for her work in fiction next spring when her book receives the prestigious Zia Award.

New Mexican women writers are invited to submit their books for consideration for the award, given each year by New Mexico Press Women at the annual spring conference. To be eligible to receive the award, selected winners must read at the award luncheon during the 2013 conference in April.

The 2013 Zia Award will be given to the author of an outstanding fiction book published in 2010, 2011, or 2012. The contest is open to all subgenres of fiction except children’s books, which will be eligible for the 2014 contest.

Submissions can be made by the author or by someone else on behalf of the author, such as a publisher. Membership in New Mexico Press Women is not required, but the writer must be a woman who lives in or has a strong connection to New Mexico. The book may be published anywhere.

To submit for consideration for the Zia Book Award, send a brief cover letter including complete contact information, the author’s biography (including her connection to New Mexico), and a description of the book, a copy of the book, and a check for the $25 entry fee payable to New Mexico Press Women to:

Loretta Hall
Zia Book Award Chair
3219 El Toboso Dr NW
Albuquerque, NM 87104

Entries must be postmarked no later than Monday, Jan. 14, 2013.

Book entries are considered a donation to the organization and are not returned. The books will be part of the silent auction held at the spring conference to raise scholarship funds.

For more information on the contest, send correspondence to the address listed above or e-mail loretta@authorhall.com.

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The Zia Award started in 1953 to honor an outstanding woman in New Mexico media. Each year the award rotates to one of three categories: nonfiction, fiction, and children=s literature. To accommodate this schedule, a book published in the last three years is eligible.

New Mexico Press Women is an affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women and exists to provide professional development, networking, and First Amendment rights protection to professional journalists and communicators.

Zia Award Recognizes Five Outstanding Nonfiction Authors

Five outstanding New Mexico women writers will be honored for their work in nonfiction on Saturday, May 5, at 12:15-1:45 p.m. at Marriott Courtyard Santa Fe, 3347 Cerrillos Rd. The 2012 Zia Book Award recognizes top winners in five categories: “Always Messin’ With Them Boys” by Jessica Helen Lopez (nonfiction poetry), “Weekends with O’Keeffe” by C.S. Merrill (history/biography), “Through a Narrow Window” by Linney Wix (coffee table), “Code Talker” by Chester Nez with Judith Schiess Avila (memoir) and “The Hybrid House” by Catherine Wanek (how to/reference).

Additionally, three books were selected to receive honorable mentions: “Love & Death: Greatest Hits” by Renee Gregorio, Joan Logghe and Miram Sagan (nonfiction poetry), “Gila Country Legend: the Life and Times of Quentin Hulse” by Nancy Coggeshall (history/biography) and “Across the Great Divide: A Photo Chronicle of the Counterculture” by Roberta Price (coffee table). “With so many excellent books submitted, the judges had to make some really tough decisions,” write Zia Book Award judges Merimée Moffitt and Jennifer Simpson.

The award is presented by New Mexico Press Women. The winning writers will read and sign books at an award luncheon during NMPW’s annual conference, “Learning from the Past–Planning for the Future.”

WINNING BOOKS AND THEIR AUTHORS

“Through a Narrow Window: Friedl Dicker-Brandeis and Her Terezín Students” (UNM Press in cooperation with the UNM Art Museum)

“‘Through a Narrow Window’” is not only a heartbreakingly beautiful art book filled with stunning and compelling color plates of the artwork of the children of Terezin concentration camp and artist/teacher Friedl Dicker-Brandeis.  The book documents the will to create art and shines a bit of hope on one of the darkest times of the 20th Century,” write Moffitt and Simpson.

Author Linney Wix is associate professor in the art education program at the University of New Mexico.

This book and the accompanying exhibition, curated by Wix, offer a closer look at the methods and philosophy of Friedl Dicker-Brandeis’s teaching, the history behind her approach, and its possible psychological effects on the children she taught in Terezín, the so-called model ghetto designed by the Nazi propaganda machine to showcase creative endeavors. The book includes biographical and art historical information on Dicker-Brandeis and sheds light on her roles as an artist, teacher and heroine behind Nazi lines in World War II.

“Weekends with O’Keeffe” (UNM Press)

“So much has been written about iconic artist Georgia O’Keeffe, but in ‘Weekends with O’Keeffe’ author C.S. Merrill shows us O’Keeffe through the lens of her young poet self.  The book is rich with details of daily life culled from journals Merrill wrote during the ’70s working as O’Keeffe’s assistant and sprinkled throughout with her own poetry, which adds artistic depth to the work,” write Moffitt and Simpson.

C. S. Merrill is the author of a book of poetry, “O’Keeffe: Days in a Life” (La Alameda Press). She works as librarian at Kewa Pueblo School and Cochiti Pueblo School.

In 1973 O’Keeffe employed C. S. Merrill to catalog her library for her estate. Merrill, a poet who was a graduate student at the University of New Mexico, was 26 and O’Keeffe was 85, almost blind, but still painting. Over seven years, Merrill was called upon for secretarial assistance, cooking and personal care for the artist. Merrill’s journals reveal details of the daily life of a genius.

“The Hybrid House – Designing with Sun, Wind, Water, and Earth” (Gibbs Smith)

“‘The Hybrid House’ is a how-to hybrid itself, pretty enough for your coffee table, informative enough to make your head spin green. Catherine Wanek tucks stories, resources, and instructions onto pages of to-die-for architectural photos. Readers will want to live more efficiently after flipping through this beautiful and useful book,” write Moffitt and Simpson.

Catherine Wanek is an author, editor, filmmaker and owner of the Black Range Lodge, an historic bed and breakfast inn in the mountains of southwest New Mexico, where she hosts workshops and conferences, including the Natural Building Colloquium.

“The Hybrid House” showcases 12 contemporary homes in more than 200 color photographs, demonstrating ways to create a healthy, comfortable house with traditional natural materials in combination with the best of new technologies, such as super-efficient windows and radiant heat.

“Code Talker: The First and Only Memoir By One of the Original Navajo Code Talkers of WWII” (Berkley Hardcover)

“‘Code Talker,’ chronicling the life of Chester Nez, is historically important and not only depicts World War II history, but also depicts a part of the Native American experience as well—it is a tribute where tribute is long overdue.  Beyond the work’s importance because of its topic, author Judith Avila’s ability to write in the voice of Chester Nez and take a large amount of information and craft it into a story is impressive,” write Moffitt and Simpson.

Co-author Judith Schiess Avila worked as a social worker, an air traffic controller, and a computer consultant before discovering writing.

Of the original 29 Navajo code talkers who first devised the code and proved it indispensable in combat, Nez is the only one still alive. In this memoir, Nez, 90, chronicles both his war years and his life growing up on the Checkerboard Area of the Navajo Reservation—the hard life that gave him the strength, both physical and mental, to become a marine. His story puts a living face on the legendary men who developed what is still the only unbroken code in modern warfare.

“Always Messing with Them Boys” (West End Press)

“‘Always Messing with Them Boys’ echoes Harlem Renaissance jazz, gardenia-scented blues and attitude.  Jessica Helen Lopez’s first book of poems steps up on the stage and shouts out lyrics both breathtaking and defiant. There are no boundaries this poet won’t cross, no topics too small or too taboo. Jessica’s voice will set women free to be, from L.A. to Deming to Burque to New York City,” write Moffitt and Simpson.

Poet Jessica Helen Lopez is a member of the 2012 Albuquerque Slam Team and was on the 2008 national champion winning UNM Lobo Slam Team.

In this debut collection, Lopez ruminates on love and romance, motherhood, teaching and the trials and tribulations of adulthood. This collection in the New Series was voted a Southwest Book of the Year by the Tucson-Pima County Public Library.

JUDGES

Merimée Moffitt arrived in the land of enchantment in 1970. She co-edits the Rag, a monthly broadsheet and co-hosts Duke City DimeStories, a prose open mic. She recently has work in Mas Tequila, Sunday Poem on Duke City Fix, Adobe Walls, Malpais Review, and the Harwood Art Center anthologies. Her third chapbook is forthcoming.

Jennifer Simpson is in the final stretch of her Master of Fine Arts in creative writing, writing her dissertation, “Reconstructing My Mother,” a memoir. She co-hosts Duke City DimeStories, Albuquerque’s only open mic for prose. Her work has been published in Bartelby Snopes literary journal, Creative Human magazine, StyleSubstanceSoul.com, and several trade magazines. She has a poem forthcoming in “A Year in Ink, Vol. V,” an anthology of San Diego writers.

ZIA BOOK AWARD

The Zia Book Award was started in 1953 to honor an outstanding woman in New Mexico media. Each year the award rotates to one of three categories: nonfiction, fiction and children’s literature.

The 2013 Zia Book Award will be given to the author of an outstanding fiction book published in 2010, 2011 or 2012. The contest is open to all sub-genres of fiction. Details will will be posted on NMPW’s website in the fall.

NEW MEXICO PRESS WOMEN

NMPW is New Mexico’s largest inclusive media organization. It is an affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women, providing professional development, networking and First Amendment rights protection to professional journalists and communicators.