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Georgia Author of the Year Awards


Tuesday, February 15, 2022


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Entry Fees

$60 and 2 copies of the nominated book


The Georgia Author of the Year Awards celebrates the best literature by Georgia writers. Prominent winners of the GAYA include Malcolm Tariq for his poetry collection Heed the Hollow (2019); Ruby Lal, for her biography Empress (2018); Nic Stone for her novels Dear Justyce (2020) and Jackpot (2019); Natasha Trethewey for her memoir Memorial Drive: A Daughter’s Memoir (2020); Judith Ortiz Cofer, for her essay collection Woman in Front of the Sun (2000); Kaitlin B. Curtice for her inspirational book Native: Identity Belonging, and Rediscovering God (2020); John Lewis for his graphic memoir March: Book Three (2016); poet Sharan Strange won a lifetime achievement award from the organization in 2018.

Nomination Fee

$60 per nomination


February 15, 2022 (postmarked)


-Books and chapbooks published within the 2021 calendar year (January 1 to December 31). Reprints and second editions are not eligible.

-Books that underwent a selection process with the publisher, in which the author was subject to acceptance or rejection.

-Books that were professionally edited during the publication process and the book did not require the author to pay for the publication.

-Electronically published books on a major platform (Kindle, Nook, or iPad) are also eligible. For electronic books, a URL and ISBN must be provided as well as one print copy of the text for judges to review.

-Books will not be considered nominated if any of these guidelines are not met and materials and payment are not postmarked by February 15, 2022. First- and second-place winners will be announced at the Georgia Author of the Year Awards virtual announcement on June 11, 2022 on Facebook Live.

Required Materials

The following required materials must be received by February 15, 2022 (postmarked).

-Nomination form

-$60 nomination fee

-Two hard copies of the nominated book mailed to:

Georgia Writers Association

Georgia Author of the Year Awards

440 Bartow Avenue, MD #2701

Kennesaw, GA 30144

The nomination fee is non-refundable and books will not be returned.

Definition of a Georgia Author for the 58th GAYA

To be considered a Georgia author and thus eligible for nomination for GAYA, an author must meet one of the following criteria: -The author must have been a resident of Georgia when the nominated book was written, though they may have since moved out of state; or -The author must currently live in Georgia when the book is nominated.

Definitions of GAYA Categories for the 58th GAYA

A book may be nominated in only one category and is selected by the nominator.

Categories (in alphabetical order):

Children’s Book—Books written for ages 9 and younger. A children’s book includes picture books and can be fiction or nonfiction.
Cookbook—Books that contain a collection of recipes, techniques, or focus on the exploration of food, cooking, and culture of food.
Essay—A collection by a single author that sustains a single topic or theme. It may not be an anthology of essays by multiple authors
Fiction (subcategories)
Detective/Mystery—A novel by a single author featuring a crime or crimes
First Novel—First published novel by a single author
Literary Fiction—A novel by a single author
Romance—A novel by a single author intended for the mass-market and involving a primary focus on relationships
Science Fiction— A novel by a single author that is grounded in the science or technology of the future
Graphic Novel—A narrative work where the story is told not only through words, but also sequential art and can be fiction or nonfiction.
LGBTQ—Works produced by or for the LGBTQ community and can be fiction, nonfiction, or poetry.
Nonfiction (subcategories)
Biography—A life history that is a fact-based, referenced life story of a person, a group of people, or a family. This category does not include autobiography, which should be nominated under memoir.
History—Research-based books which use narratives to examine and analyze past events
Inspirational—Books on topics in self-help, life improvement, motivational, religious, or spiritual.
Memoir—A book that is an account of one’s personal life and experiences.
Poetry (subcategories)
Chapbook—By a single poet and generally no more than 40 pages
Full-Length Book—By a single poet
Short Story Collection—By a single author
Specialty Book—Anthologies of poetry, creative non-fiction, and fiction, and books that include a visual element such as art or photography.
Young Adult—Books written for ages 10 and older and are either fiction or nonfiction.
In the Event a Category Has Fewer than Four Nominees

If a category has fewer than four nominees, authors will have the opportunity to move their books to the next best category. For example, if there are only two books in the Romance category, authors will be notified and may choose to place the book in the Literary Fiction category.

In the Event an Award Is Not Made in a Category

Georgia Writers Association reserves the right to not award a winner in a category if it is determined that none of the nominations should win. If no winner is selected due to a lack of sufficient nominations in a category, the nomination fee will be refunded. However, if the category judge determines that a category has no first– or second–place winner, the nomination fee will not be refunded.

Contact Information

Terri Dudenhoeffer, [email protected]


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