Category Archives: Books & Reading

2024 One Book One Nebraska: Now Available on BARD!

Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir of a Crimeby Debora Harding is now available on cartridge and for download on BARD, the Braille and Audio Reading Download service. BARD is a service offered by the Nebraska Library Commission Talking Book and Braille Service and the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled at the Library of Congress.

This memoir of native Nebraskan, Debora Harding, is all about a traumatic childhood event, the aftereffects of which would change her family forever. Harding expertly weaves the past with the present in a riveting story of survival and family dynamics.

“With remarkable narrative skill, Harding untangles the lingering effects of family dysfunction and criminal trauma. This is a page-turner with a deep heart and soul, full of forgiveness but demanding of accountability.”

BookPage, “Best Books of 2020: Memoirs

This title has been selected as the 2024 One Book One Nebraska. The program is now in its 20th year of bringing Nebraskans together for the reading and discussion of one great book written by Nebraska authors or that have a Nebraska theme or setting. Nearly every One Book One Nebraska winner is available on cartridge and for download on BARD.

The narration was done by Connie Healey, who has been volunteering for NLC’s Talking Book and Braille department for 10 years and received a Nebraska Library Association’s Outstanding Volunteer Award in 2022. The recording took over 30 hours in the studio and an additional 20 hours of post-production to prepare for our patrons. Connie has now read three One Book One Nebraska selections, the other two beingThe Bones of Paradiseby Jonis Agee andPrairie Forge by James J. Kimble.

TBBS borrowers can request “Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir of a Crime,” DBC02052, or download it from the National Library Service BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download) website. If you have high-speed internet access, you can download books to your smartphone or tablet, or onto a flash drive for use with your player. You may also contact your reader’s advisor to have the book mailed to you on cartridge.

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Nominate Books Now for the 2024 Nebraska Book Awards

The 2024 Nebraska Book Awards program, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book (NCB) and Nebraska Library Commission, will recognize and honor books that are written by Nebraska authors, published by Nebraska publishers, set in Nebraska, or relate to Nebraska.

Books published in 2023, as indicated by the copyright date, are eligible for nomination. They must be professionally 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 in each category will be invited to participate as featured authors at the October 12th, 2024 Nebraska Celebration of Books in Lincoln. The event will culminate in an awards ceremony for the authors, publishers, and their families, where winning books will be displayed and authors will have the opportunity to read from and sign their books.

The entry fee is $40 per book and per category entered. Deadline for entries is May 31, 2024. For more information, including entry forms, see http://www.centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/awards/nebookawards.html

Books may be entered in one of two ways, either complete the Online Entry Form and submit payment through PayPal, then mail three copies of the book to the below address. Or, mail the Entry Form [pdf], three copies of the book, and the entry fee via a check made out to the Nebraska Center for the Book to the below address.

NCB Book Awards Competition
c/o Nebraska Library Commission
The Atrium
1200 N Street, Suite 120
Lincoln, NE 68508-2023

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. Together we 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.”

The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.    

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Dancing with the Octopus Proclaimed the 2024 One Book One Nebraska

On Jan. 8, 2024, Governor Jim Pillen signed a proclamation honoring 2024 One Book One Nebraska: Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir of a Crime (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2020) by Debora Harding. Rod Wagner, Nebraska Center for the Book (NCB) Board member, and Nebraska Library Commission Director spoke about the program and selection. Dancing with the Octopus is a riveting and thoughtful memoir written by Nebraska native Debora Harding. Kidnapped, assaulted at the age of 14, then left abandoned by her attacker in the middle of a snow storm, Harding recounts the trauma inflicted on herself and her family in the wake of the attack. Poignant in the discussion of mental health and fraught family dynamics that Harding would carry into adulthood, she chooses to meet her attacker many years later. 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 twentieth 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 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.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir Chosen as 2024 One Book One Nebraska

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 16, 2023


FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir Chosen as 2024 One Book One Nebraska

People across Nebraska are encouraged to read the work of a Nebraskan — and then talk about it with their friends and neighbors. Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2020) by Debora Harding is the 2024 One Book One Nebraska selection.

This memoir of native Nebraskan, Debora Harding, is all about a traumatic childhood event, the aftereffects of which would change her family forever. Harding expertly weaves the past with the present in a riveting story of survival and family dynamics. Harding’s debut book has been compared to bestsellers like “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls and “Educated” by Tara Westover.


“With remarkable narrative skill, Harding untangles the lingering effects of family dysfunction and criminal trauma. This is a page-turner with a deep heart and soul, full of forgiveness but demanding of accountability.” – BookPage, “Best Books of 2020: Memoirs

Debora Harding was born and raised in the midwest. At the age of nineteen she dropped out of university to work for Senator Gary Hart’s presidential campaign, before relocating to Washington DC to run an environmental non-profit. Fed up with politics, she cycled across America where she met her English husband, author Thomas Harding. She then joined him in the UK and worked at an award-winning video production company that focused on the counter-culture protest movement in Europe. Later, she co-founded the UK’s first local television station in Oxford. Wanting the children to enjoy the great outdoors, the family moved back to the USA, and Debora trained as a restorative justice mediator and ran an independent bicycle business. She is now a full-time writer and activist, and splits her time between the UK and the US.

Libraries across Nebraska will join other literary and cultural organizations in planning book discussions, activities, and events that will encourage Nebraskans to read and discuss this book. Support materials to assist with local reading/discussion activities will be available after January 1, 2024 at http://onebook.nebraska.gov. Updates and activity listings will be posted on the One Book One Nebraska Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/onebookonenebraska.

2024 will mark the twentieth year of the One Book One Nebraska reading program, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book. 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. The Nebraska Center for the Book invites recommendations for One Book One Nebraska book selection year-round at http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/obon-nomination.asp.

One Book One Nebraska is sponsored by Nebraska Center for the Book, Humanities Nebraska, and Nebraska Library Commission. The Nebraska Center for the Book 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 housed at and supported by 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.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.    

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Young Readers Invited to Write to Favorite Authors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 29, 2023

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Young Readers Invited to Write to Favorite Authors

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, 2023. 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, Francie & Finch Bookshop, 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 2024. 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. An informational NCompass Live webinar will air on October 11th, discussing this year’s contest, the submission process, and judging criteria. 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.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases .

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Shortlist for 2024 One Book One Nebraska Announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 21, 2023

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Shortlist for 2024 One Book One Nebraska Announced

What book will all Nebraskans be encouraged to read in 2024? We will all find out on October 14th at the Celebration of Nebraska Books. A collection of essays by a Nebraska authors, a memoir, a novel set in the Sand Hills, and a Midwest thriller—all stories with ties to Nebraska and the Great Plains—are the finalists for the 2024 One Book One Nebraska statewide reading program. The finalists are:

  • The Big Empty: Contemporary Nebraska Nonfiction Writers edited by Ladette Randolph and Nina Shevchuk-Murray, Bison Books, 2007.
  • Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir by Debora Harding, Bloomsbury Publishing, 2020.
  • The Echo Maker by Richard Powers, Farrar, Straus and Giroux/Picador, 2006.
  • The Line Between by Tosca Lee, Howard Books, 2019.

The One Book One Nebraska reading program is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Humanities Nebraska, and Nebraska Library Commission. It encourages Nebraskans across the state to read and discuss the same book, chosen from books written by Nebraska authors or that have a Nebraska theme or setting. A Nebraska Center for the Book committee selected the three finalists from a list of nineteen titles nominated by Nebraskans. In the coming weeks, Nebraska Center for the Book board members will vote on the 2024 selection.

The Celebration of Nebraska Books, on October 14th, will also honor winners of the 2023 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 recognizes an organization known for exceptional contributions to literacy, books, reading, libraries, and 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.

Nebraskans are invited to take part in the Celebration of Nebraska Books on October 14th, at the Nebraska City Campus Union’s Regency Suite in downtown Lincoln, where the choice for the 2024 One Book One Nebraska will be announced. This year’s One Book One Nebraska selection will be featured in a key note presentation by Professor Rick Cypert on Mignon Eberhart and her novel The Mystery of Hunting’s End (Bison Books, 1998.) See http://onebook.nebraska.gov or https://www.facebook.com/OneBookOneNebraska for more information about ongoing 2023 One Book One Nebraska activities.

The Celebration of Nebraska Books will include readings by the winners of the 2023 Nebraska Book Awards,with book signings by the authors after the event. A list of Nebraska Book Award winners is posted at http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/awards.html. The Celebration of Nebraska Books is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and Nebraska Library Commission. Humanities Nebraska provides support for the One Book One Nebraska keynote presentation.

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.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.    

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Celebrate Nebraska’s 2023 Book Award Winners

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 15, 2023

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Celebrate Nebraska’s 2023 Book Award Winners

Celebrate Nebraska’s 2023 Book Award winners with author readings and an awards presentation ceremony at the Nebraska Center for the Book’s Celebration of Nebraska Books. Held at the UNL City Campus Union on October 14th, winners of the 2023 Nebraska Book Awards will be honored and the celebration will include readings by some of the winning authors, designers and illustrators of books with a Nebraska connection published in 2022. And the winners are:

Children’s Design: Eat Your Woolly Mammoths! By James Solheim. Publisher: Greenwillow Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Children’s Nonfiction: Eat Your Woolly Mammoths! By James Solheim. Publisher: Greenwillow Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Young Adult: Scattered Showers by Rainbow Rowell. Publisher: Wednesday Books, St. Martin’s Publishing Group.

Design: Feeding the Fire by Twyla Hansen. Publisher: Wayne State College Press.

Illustration: The Rowdy Randy Wild West Show by Casey Day Rislov, illustrated by Zachary Pullen. Publisher: Mountain Stars Press.

Fiction: Private Way by Ladette Randolph. Publisher: University of Nebraska Press.

Nonfiction Autobiography: Monkey on the Other Side of the Window: The True Story of the Northeast Nebraska Zoo in Royal, Nebraska by Dick Haskin. Publisher: Morris Publishing.

Nonfiction Biography: The Women Who Built Omaha: A Bold and Remarkable History by Eileen Wirth. Publisher: Bison Books.

Nonfiction Fellowship: From Your Friend, Carey Dean: Letters from Nebraska’s Death Row by Lisa Knopp. Publisher: Cascade Books.

Nonfiction History: Standing Bear’s Quest for Freedom: The First Civil Rights Victory for Native Americans by Lawrence A. Dwyer. Publisher: Bison Books.

Nonfiction Nebraska as Place: Nourishing Waters, Comforting Sky: Thirty-Five Years at a Sandhills Oasis by Stephen R. Jones. Publisher: Bison Books.

Nonfiction Solidarity: Dirt Persuasion: Civic Environmental Populism and the Heartland’s Pipeline Fight by Derek Moscato. Publisher: University of Nebraska Press.

Poetry: A Crazy Little Thing by Lucy Adkins. Publisher: Wayne State College Press.

Poetry Honor: Cord Blood by Bonnie Johnson-Bartee. Publisher: Sandhills Press.

The Celebration of Nebraska Books, on October 14th, will also honor winners of the 2023 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.

The 2023 One Book One Nebraska selection, The Mystery of Hunting’s End by Mignon Eberhart (Bison Books, 1998) will be featured in a keynote presentation. The introduction of the 2024 One Book One Nebraska book choice will conclude the festivities.

The Celebration of Nebraska Books is sponsored by Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from History Nebraska’s Nebraska History Museum. Humanities Nebraska provides support for One Book One Nebraska. 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.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.    

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Friday Reads: “The Mystery of Hunting’s End” by Mignon Eberhart

Posted June 2, 2023 by Rod Wagner

The Mystery of Hunting’s End is this year’s selection for the One Book One Nebraska program. Published in 1930, Mignon Eberhart chose the Nebraska Sandhills region near Valentine for the remote setting of this mystery novel. Hunting’s End is a lodge owned by the wealthy Kingery family. There, a small and curious group comes together by invitation, the same group present five years earlier when a death occurred. Was it by a heart attack or was it murder?

The Nebraska Sandhills, where Mignon G. Eberhart lived as a newlywed, inspired the setting of this mystery. Matil Kingery’s intent in this reunion is to discover which one of her guests murdered her father.  

Posing as another guest is detective Lance O’Leary. At his recommendation, Matil has arranged for Nurse Sarah Keate to care for Aunt Lucy Kingery at Hunting’s End – a challenging assignment, as it turns out. Keate is a perceptive and persistent sleuth and an able O’Leary ally. Nurse Keate has a recurring presence in Eberhart’s novels.

Gathered together at the lodge, the guests are sealed from the outside by a November snowstorm. A dog named Jericho lurks about, and a stray cat is curiously present for each discovery of a new death.

This book keeps the reader guessing as to who is behind the murders at Hunting’s End. Why were these murders committed and who is the killer? The reader will be alert to clues leading to the identity of the guilty party.

I found The Mystery of Hunting’s End to be an enjoyable and fun read. It is true to a good mystery book – colorful characters and a plot that continues to surprise and keep the reader guessing – who did it?

Mignon Eberhart was a prolific writer, one of the most popular mystery writers of her time with a career spanning from the 1920s to the 1980s. Eberhart published over 50 novels and numerous short stories during her career, and with several adapted for film and television. The 1938 movie, Mystery House, is based on The Mystery of Hunting’s End. Eberhart received the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America and was a past president of the Mystery Writers of America.  

For more about Mignon Eberhart, read Nebraska Wesleyan University Professor Rick Cypert’s America’s Agatha Christie: Mignon Good Eberhart, Her Life and Works. Cypert contributed discussion questions for The Mystery of Hutning’s End. Discussion questions can be found on the Nebraska Library Commission website. Mignon G. Eberhart. The Mystery of Hunting’s End. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. 1998. ©1930.

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This review was posted on the Nebraska Library Commission blog June 2, 2023. See the original post here: http://nlcblogs.nebraska.gov/nlcblog/2023/06/02/friday-reads-the-mystery-of-huntings-end-by-mignon-eberhart/

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2023 Nebraska Book Award Submissions Sought

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 2022, 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 2023 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/programs/celebration.html 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 2023 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.”

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Young Nebraskans Win Writing Competition   

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
April 3, 2023

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Young Nebraskans Win Writing Competition

Nebraska students competed for the twenty-fourth year in the annual Letters About Literature competition. They wrote to tell an author about how books can make a difference in a young person’s life. Young Nebraska writers who wrote winning letters in the Letters About Literature competition attended a proclamation signing ceremony on April 3rd with Gov. Jim Pillen. Letters About Literature is a state-wide reading and writing promotion program. The competition encourages young people to read, be inspired, and write back to the author (living or dead) who had an impact on their lives.

This annual contest is coordinated and sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Nebraska Library Commission, Lincoln City Libraries, Humanities Nebraska, Connie Osborne, Francie & Finch Bookshop of Lincoln, and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.

Young Nebraska writers to be honored are:

Winners
Sienna Geib, of Lincoln, for a letter to Kikori Morino
Lily Wright, of Valley, for a letter to Jennifer Niven

Runners-up
Libertad Wilson, of Lincoln, for a letter to Alan Gratz
Jack Woodward, of Valley, for a letter to Sonia Nazario

The students wrote personal letters to authors explaining how his or her work changed their view of themselves or the world. They selected authors from any genre, fiction or nonfiction, contemporary or classic. Winners were chosen from two competition levels: middle school, and high school.

The Nebraska winners were honored at a luncheon and received cash prizes and gift certificates. Their winning letters are placed in the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors at Bennett Martin Public Library in Lincoln. For more information about the competition see http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/programs/LAL.html

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 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.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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