[LINCOLN, NE, June 1, 2023] – Local reading is about to be celebrated again in the capital city! After a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the Nebraska Book Festival is back in Lincoln taking place on Saturday, June 10 at the Lincoln Foundation Garden and Lincoln City Library Bennett Martin Branch (1415 N Street).
Come listen to the local Lincoln music group the String Beans, enjoy prime time family reading time, hear from Carla Ketner about her forthcoming children’s book about Ted Kooser, take part in activities, meet bookish vendors and more!
The book festival officially kicks off with literary trivia Friday, June 9 at 6:00 p.m. in White Elm Brewing (720 Van Dorn Street).
Other featured authors include Joy Castro, Dana Fritz, John Mabry, and Matt Mason. For a full schedule of events, please visit bookfestival.nebraska.gov/2023.
The book festival is held to celebrate Nebraska’s literary heritage and contemporary authors and to stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. By gathering together contemporary writing talent of our state and surrounding areas, the festival provides an opportunity for participants to cultivate an understanding of our history, culture and community. The festival is sponsored by Nebraska Center for the Book, City of Lincoln Libraries, Nebraska Library Commission, University of Nebraska Press, Francie & Finch Bookshop, and Humanities Nebraska.
Where Nebraska Center for the Book board members share their thoughts about the books they are reading. This month’s review is by Richard Miller.
Review of Myth America: Historians Take on the Biggest Legends and Lies About Our Past, edited by Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer.
This book, through original and secondary research, attempts to tackle a variety of historical issues in the U.S. that have dogged us for many years — by showing when current views of these issues are not in keeping with fact. The editors, who are both professors at Princeton University, have assembled a lineup of distinguished historians who discuss issues as diverse as American exceptionalism, immigration, American socialism, the New Deal, Confederate monuments, the Great Society, insurrection, the Reagan Revolution, and many others. While some may consider this collection to be left-of-center, the chapter writers provide solid facts to support their conclusions.
Here is one example of the findings on the topic of “voter fraud,” a topic much on the minds of many: “‘Nearly half of Americans believe voter fraud happens at least somewhat often, and 70 percent think it happens at least occasionally . . .'” [ABC News/Washington Post 2016 poll]. But a 2014 study by a Loyola law professor found that, “from 2000 to 2014, out of one billion votes cast in elections in the United States, there were only thirty-one cases of voter-impersonation fraud.”
This title is worth reading. After all, who can resist a book with the opening dedication: “To the archivists, librarians, teachers, and fellow historians who give us a better, and more accurate, understanding of our nation’s past”?
Carson Vaughan has recently written an article all about our 2023 One Book One Nebraska author, Mignon Eberhart! It’s a great read for those interested in learning more after reading “The Mystery of Hunting’s End.” The article was published by Flatwater Free Press on March 24th.
A reminder that the Nebraska Letters About Literature reading and writing contest is open through the end of December. Each letter must be submitted via the Letters About Literature online platform for Nebraska on the NCB website.
Young readers in grades 4-12 are invited to write a personal letter to an author for the Nebraska Letters about Literature (LAL) contest, a state reading and writing promotion program. The letter can be to any author (living or dead) from any genre-fiction or nonfiction, contemporary or classic-explaining how that author’s work changed the student’s view of the world. Submissions must be completed online October 1- December 31, 2022. Nebraska Letters About Literature is coordinated and sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from Lincoln City Libraries, Humanities Nebraska, and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.
The Nebraska Center for the Book’s panel of judges will select a winner and an honorable mention per competition level (Level I for grades 4-6, Level II for grades 7-8, and Level III for grades 9-12) to be honored in a proclamation-signing ceremony at the state capitol during National Library Week in April 2022. Their winning letters will be placed in the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors at Bennett Martin Public Library in Lincoln. Nebraska winners and honorable mentions will receive state prizes.
Teachers, librarians, and parents can download the contest guidelines, free teaching materials, information on the online entry system, and past winning letters on the Nebraska Center for the Book website. A recording of the informational NCompass Live webinar on November 3rd, discussing this year’s contest, is available online. For more information contact Nebraska Center for the Book.
The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the national Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and the Nebraska Library Commission.
As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”
You can have a say in what we read for One Book One Nebraska! The selection committee can’t consider a book unless it’s been nominated, so make sure you fill out the Online Nomination Form by June 15th! Books must meet the following criteria: 1. Written by a Nebraska author, or has a Nebraska setting 2. Is in print 3. Is an adult title (Children/YA books are not considered)
Note: Titles only need to be nominated a single time to be considered by the selection committee. Multiple nominations for the same title do not carry additional weight in the evaluation process.
Nominations received after the deadline will be considered for the following year. Suggestions can also be e-mailed to: email@example.com.
On Jan. 10, 2022, Governor Pete Ricketts signed a proclamation honoring 2022 One Book One Nebraska: The Bones of Paradise: A Novel (William Morrow, 2016) by Jonis Agee. Rebecca Faber, Nebraska Center for the Book (NCB) Board member spoke about the program and selection. The Bones of Paradise is a multigenerational family saga set in the unforgiving Nebraska Sand Hills in the years following the massacre at Wounded Knee—an ambitious tale of history, vengeance, race, guilt, betrayal, family, and belonging, filled with a vivid cast of characters shaped by violence, love, and a desperate loyalty to the land. The full proclamation can be viewed on the One Book One Nebraska webpages at http://onebook.nebraska.gov.
The One Book One Nebraska reading program, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Nebraska Library Commission, and Humanities Nebraska is entering its eighteenth year. It encourages Nebraskans across the state to read and discuss one book, chosen from books written by Nebraska authors or that have a Nebraska theme or setting. Libraries across Nebraska will join other literary and cultural organizations in planning book discussions, activities, and events to encourage Nebraskans to read and discuss this book. Support materials to assist with local reading/discussion activities are available at http://onebook.nebraska.gov. The author, Jonis Agee, is available for speaking events, writing clinics, and book discussions through the Humanities Nebraska Speakers Bureau at https://humanitiesnebraska.org/speaker/.
The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the Nebraska Library Commission.
As Nebraska’s state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services-“bringing together people and information.”
Celebrate Nebraska’s rich literary tradition with the Nebraska Book Awards. The Nebraska Book Awards program, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book (NCB), recognizes and honors books that are written by Nebraska authors, published by Nebraska publishers, set in Nebraska, or concerning Nebraska. The Awards competition opens every year on March 1st and entries are due by June 30th. Books published in 2020, as indicated by the copyright date, are eligible for nomination. They must be published, have an International Standard Book Number (ISBN), and be bound. Books may be entered in one or more of the following categories: Nonfiction, Fiction, Children/Young Adult, Cover/Design/Illustration, and Poetry. Winners of the 2021 Nebraska Book Awards will be honored at the annual Celebration of Nebraska Books in the fall. The authors, designers and illustrators, and publishers are invited to give a short reading and speak about their winning books. Please visit the NCB website at http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/awards/nebookawards.htm for more information and to submit your nomination. Submissions can be made on the NCB website or by mail.
The Celebration of Nebraska Books, free and open to the public, will also honor recipients of the 2021 Jane Geske and Mildred Bennett awards. The Mildred Bennett Award recognizes individuals who have made a significant contribution to fostering the literary tradition in Nebraska, reminding us of the literary and intellectual heritage that enriches our lives and molds our world. The Jane Geske Award is presented to a Nebraska organization for exceptional contribution to literacy, books, reading, libraries, or literature in Nebraska. It commemorates Geske’s passion for books and was established in recognition of her contributions to the well-being of the libraries of Nebraska. Nominations for these awards are accepted year-round at http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/nominationforms.html.
The Celebration of Nebraska Books is
sponsored by Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission,
with support from Humanities Nebraska, and History Nebraska’s Nebraska History
Museum. The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library
Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers,
librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the
community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public
interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the
Book is supported by the national Center for the Book in the Library of
Congress and the Nebraska Library Commission.
As the state library agency, the
Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information
needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide
promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services,
“bringing together people and information.”
Our Nebraska State Poet, Matt Mason, opens our online event and will be introducing all of our speakers and award winners. In this opening video, we will hear from Nebraska Center for the Book board member, Rebecca Faber, giving our keynote presentation on the 2020 One Book One Nebraska selection “All the Gallant Men: An American Sailor’s Firsthand Account of Pearl Harbor” (William Morrow, 2016) written by Donald Stratton with Ken Gire. The One Book One Nebraska presentation is supported by Humanities Nebraska.
The 2020 Jane Pope Geske Award
Join Matt Mason, as he presents the 2020 Jane Geske Award for exceptional literary contributions, to The UNL Center for Digital Research in the Humanities.
The 2020 Mildred Bennett Award
Join Matt Mason as he presents the 2020 Mildred Bennett Award for exceptional literary contributions by an individual to Kimberly Verhines!
2020 Nebraska Book Award Winners- Children’s Picture Books
State Poet, Matt Mason introduces the 2020 Nebraska Book Award winners for Children’s Picture Books. Hear from winning author Preston Love, for his Children’s Picture Book, “Your Bridge to History” written by Portia Love and Preston Love, Illustrated by Regina Jeanpierre (Preston Publishing, 2019.) The Nebraska Book Awards program, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book (NCB), recognizes and honors books that are written by Nebraska authors, published by Nebraska publishers, set in Nebraska, or concerning Nebraska.
2020 Nebraska Book Award Winner – Cover, Design, and Illustration
State Poet, Matt Mason introduces the 2020 Nebraska Book Award winner for the Cover, Design, and Illustration category. Hear from winning author Debra Kleve White, for her book, “The Spirit of Nebraska: A History of Husker Game Day Traditions – The Tunnel Walk, Mascots, Cheer, and More” design by Concierge Marketing and Publishing Services (Cheerful Books, 2019.)
The 2020 Nebraska Book Award Winners – Fiction
Matt Mason introduces the 2020 Nebraska Book Award winners in the Fiction category. Hear from winning authors Faith Colburn, for her novel, “See Willy See” (Prairie Wind Press, 2019) and Fiction Honor Series winner, Tosca Lee, for her novels “The Line Between: A Thriller” and “A Single Light: A Thriller” (Howard Books, 2019.)
The 2020 Book Award Winners – Poetry
Matt Mason introduces the 2020 Nebraska Book Award winners for Poetry. Hear from winning authors Sarah McKinstry-Brown, for her poetry book, “This Bright Darkness” (Black Lawrence Press, 2019.) and Mark Sanders, winner of a Poetry Honor Award for his book “In a Good Time” (WSC Press, 2019.)
The 2020 Nebraska Books Award Winners – Nonfiction
Matt Mason introduces the 2020 Nebraska Book Award winners in the Nonfiction category. Hear from winning author Carson Vaughan, winner of the Investigative Journalism Award for his book, “Zoo Nebraska: Dismantling of an American Dream” (Little A, 2019.) and Larkin Powell, winner of the Nature Reference Award for his book “Great Plains Birds: Discover the Great Plains” (Bison Books, 2019.)
The 2020 Nebraska Book Award Winners – Nonfiction
Matt Mason introduces more of the 2020 Nebraska Book Award winners for Nonfiction. Hear from winning authors Steve Marantz, winner of the Immigration story Award, for his book, “Citizen Akoy: Basketball and the Making of a South Sudanese American” (University of Nebraska Press, 2019) and Marilyn Irvin Holt, winner of a the Nebraska Perseverance Award for her book “Nebraska During the New Deal: The Federal Writers’ Project in the Cornhusker State” (Bison Books, 2019.)
2021 One Book One Nebraska Announcement & Closing
Join Matt Mason, Rebecca Faber, and Christine Walsh in the final session of the 2020 Celebration of Nebraska Books, as they announce the selection for the 2021 One Book One Nebraska.
Grand Island, NE – Poets, in celebration of the Guild’s 95th year, we want you to show us your best work. You can enter up to six poems free of charge. Guild Membership is not required. Our judges ask that you please familiarize yourself with submission guidelines and links found on Nebraskawriters.org under News and Events, 2020 Poetry Chapbook. Selected poems will be published fall of 2020 in the NWG’s Verses from the Plains: A Poetry Collection.
Submission deadline:May 30, 2020
Calling All Designers! Are you interested in a chance to design the chapbook covers? Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or submission questions.
About Nebraska Writers Guild:
What do Willa Cather, Mari Sandoz, and John Neihardt have in common? They were all members of the Nebraska Writers Guild, one of the oldest writers’ organizations in the country.
MISSION: Nebraska Writers Guild is a nonprofit (501c3) organization dedicated to empowerment and individual growth through involvement with a community of writers and related professionals; promoting authors and the craft of writing through events and publications; and advancement through professional development. For more information please visit nebraskawriters.org or facebook.com/nebraskawritersguild.
Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take ya to #BookFaceFriday!
Since it snowed yesterday in much of Nebraska, this title couldn’t be
more right. But unlike the fickle ways of Nebraska weather, NLC Book
Club Kits never let you down. The Commission’s Book Club Kit service is
still running like clockwork, and sending out titles like “This Is Not the Tropics: Stories”
by Nebraska author, Ladette Randolph (University of Wisconsin Press,
2005.) While many library services have changed, we realize your book
club groups may be functioning a little differently right now. But with
book pick-ups and online group discussions, book clubs are still going
strong. Of course with your health in mind, we strongly encourage you to
keep any in-person book club meetings to ten people or fewer.
“Ladette Randolph’s stories sink
their teeth into the deep Nebraska Midwest the way that Flannery
O’Connor tore into the heart of Georgia. There’s a wonderfully sly,
deadpan sweetness at work here, so that it may take a moment to realize
how odd and twisty the stories are. Randolph seems like such a nice,
earnestly polite young woman—and then suddenly your wallet is missing
and she’s driving away in your car! These are beautifully crafty,
beguiling stories: witty, wise, and wicked.”—Dan Chaon, author of You Remind Me of Me and Among the Missing
This week’s #BookFace model is one of our NLC Commissioners, Lois Todd-Meyer!