N.L. authors win literary prizes

Staff ~ The Telegram
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Two Newfoundland books have been singled out for literary prizes at the 2010 Atlantic Book Awards.

Scott A. Keating won the Lillian Shepherd Memorial Award for Excellence in Illustration for "What Colour is the Ocean?" written by Gary Collins with Maggie Rose Parsons and published by Flanker Press.

Two Newfoundland books have been singled out for literary prizes at the 2010 Atlantic Book Awards.

Scott A. Keating won the Lillian Shepherd Memorial Award for Excellence in Illustration for "What Colour is the Ocean?" written by Gary Collins with Maggie Rose Parsons and published by Flanker Press.

Keating's art provides a beautiful backdrop through this four-season look at the sea.

The field guide "Birds of Newfoundland" by Ian Warkentin and Sandy Newton, published by Boulder Publications of Portugal Cove, won the Atlantic Publishers Marketing Association (APMA) Best Atlantic-Published Book Award.

The APMA prize, sponsored by Friesens Corp., awards the publisher with $4,000 and the writer with $1,000. There were also prizes of $1,000 to each publisher and $250 for each author, sponsored by Hignell Book Printing for the runnersup - co-authors David A. Francis and Robert M. Leavitt and publisher, Goose Lane Editions for "A Passamaquoddy-Maliseet Dictionary/Peskotomuhkati Wolastoqewi Latuwewakon" and novelist Trudy J. Morgan-Cole and publisher Breakwater Books for "By the Rivers of Brooklyn."

More than 200 of Atlantic Canada's writers, illustrators, book publishers and readers attended the awards ceremony Wednesday night at the Alderney Landing Theatre in Dartmouth, N.S. Out of a total of 33 nominees, 13 recipients were named for various literary prizes.

CBC Radio host Costas Halavrezos and Newfoundland playwright, comedian and author Berni Stapleton provided panache and lots of laughs.

Nova Scotia's Shandi Mitchell was the biggest winner of the evening, taking home both the prestigious Margaret and John Savage First Book Award and the 20th anniversary Thomas Head Raddall Atlantic Fiction Prize for her debut novel "Under This Unbroken Sky," published by Penguin Canada, a story of Ukrainian immigrant farmers on the Canadian prairies in the 1930s.

Mitchell had just stepped off a plane from New Delhi where she was celebrated as a regional winner (Canada and Caribbean) of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book.

In accepting her two awards Wednesday night, Mitchell said she shortened her stay in India because she felt it was important to be part of the celebration in Nova Scotia where her novel began with support from the Writers' Federation of Nova Scotia and the province.

The 2010 Atlantic Book Awards & Festival continues until Sunday with events in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.

Organizations: Flanker Press, Boulder Publications, Friesens Goose Lane Editions Alderney Landing Theatre CBC Radio Penguin Canada Commonwealth Writers Federation of Nova Scotia

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Atlantic Canada Portugal Cove Brooklyn Dartmouth New Delhi Caribbean India New Brunswick

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