Submit to the 2023 Colorado Book Awards!

Submissions for the Colorado Book Awards are open as of September 1, 2022 for books published for the first time in 2022 or the last quarter of 2021. The submission deadline is January 9, 2023.

To be eligible for a Colorado Book Award, a primary contributor to the book must be a Colorado writer, editor, illustrator, or photographer. Current Colorado residents are eligible, as are individuals engaged in ongoing literary work in the state and authors whose personal history, identity, and literary work reflect a strong Colorado influence. Authors not currently Colorado residents who feel their work is connected to Colorado may submit a letter describing the connection. Independently published work is welcome. All entries must have a copyright page and an ISBN, and we strongly recommend all entries be professionally copyedited.

Questions? Contact Mary Hickey, Colorado Center for the Book Programs Coordinator at or 303.894.7951 x19.


Colorado Book Awards Selectors and Judges Needed!

If you enjoy reading, you’ll enjoy being one of the first to read up-and-coming works from Colorado’s literary community as a selector or judge for the 2023 Colorado Book Awards!

Colorado Humanities & Center for the Book’s Book Awards Advisory Committee assigns volunteer selectors and judges to panels of diverse readers (e.g., scholars, librarians, booksellers, teachers, and writers) from across the state. The Book Awards judging process has two rounds. Selectors choose three finalist books in a given Colorado Book Award category, and Judges choose a Colorado Book Award winner from the three finalists. Selection of finalists will tentatively take place February 1 – April 1, 2023 and judging of finalists will tentatively take place April 1 – mid-May 2023. Example book categories include history, fiction (literary, general, genre), non-fiction (creative and general), poetry, and children’s, juvenile, and young adult literature.

If you are interested in volunteering to select or judge for the 2023 Colorado Book Awards, please submit an application by clicking on the button below. If you have previously applied, please update your application to make sure we have the correct contact information. Please do not submit to select or judge in a category you may be entering or participated in the same role the year before.


View Finalist Readings with live Q&As and the Celebration event with brief readings by the winners on our Facebook or YouTube channels anytime.

About the Colorado Book Awards

The Colorado Book Awards annually celebrates the accomplishments of Colorado’s outstanding authors, editors, illustrators, and photographers. Volunteer selectors and judges from across Colorado read submissions to choose finalists and winners. To learn more about, partner with, or sponsor the Colorado Book Awards, please contact program coordinator Mary Hickey at 303.894.7951 x19


Colorado Book Awards 2022

2022 winners were announced at a celebration event on June 25, 2022 at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House Studio Loft in Denver. There were 185 entries in 15 categories: anthology, biography, children’s literature, creative nonfiction, general nonfiction, general fiction, historical fiction, history, juvenile literature, literary fiction, mystery, poetry, science fiction/fantasy, thriller, and young adult literature. Volunteer selectors and judges from across Colorado read submissions to choose finalists and winners.

All finalist books are available for purchase at BookBar and The Bookies Bookstore.

Winners and Finalists

(Winners pictured)


Shadow Atlas: Dark Landscapes of the Americas
edited by Carina Bissett, Hillary Dodge, and Joshua Viola and illustrated by Aaron Lovett
(Hex Publishers)

All the Lives We Ever Lived, Volume 2
edited by Manuel Aragon and Roxanne Banks Malia
(Lighthouse Writers Workshop)

Tell It Slant: An Anthology of Creative Nonfiction by Writers from Colorado’s Prisons
edited by Elijah Null, Julie Rada, and Suzie Q. Smith
(University of Denver Prison Arts Initiative – LuxLit Press)


Alpha: Eddie Gallagher and the War for the Soul of the Navy Seals
by David Philipps
(Penguin Random House)

The Girl Who Dared to Defy: Jane Street and the Rebel Maids of Denver
by Jane Little Botkin
(University of Oklahoma Press)

Borderlands Curanderos: The Worlds of Santa Teresa Urrea and Don Pedrito Jaramillo
by Jennifer Koshatka Seman
(University of Texas Press)

Children’s Literature

Read Island
by Nicole Magistro and illustrated by Alice Feagan
(Read Island LLC)

The Beak Book
by Robin Page
(Simon & Schuster)

by Dow Phumiruk
(Penguin Random House)

General Fiction

Mixed Company
by Jenny Shank
(Texas Review Press)

The Night of Many Endings
by Melissa Payne
(Lake Union Publishing)

The Boundaries of Their Dwelling
by Blake Sanz
(University of Iowa Press)

General Nonfiction

The Holly: Five Bullets, One Gun, and the Struggle to Save an American Neighborhood
by Julian Rubinstein
(Farrar, Straus, and Giroux)

The Entrepreneur’s Weekly Nietzsche: A Book for Disruptors
by Dave Jilk and Brad Feld
(Lioncrest Publishing)

Breakthrough: How to Overcome Doubt, Fear, and Resistance to Be Your Ultimate Creative Self
by Todd Mitchell
(Owl Hollow Press)

Historical Fiction

The Cape Doctor
by E.J. Levy
(Little, Brown and Company)

Luther, Wyoming
by Tomas Alamilla and Mario Acevedo
(Five Star Publishing)

Chloe’s Mistigri
by Thomas L. Hall
(NoCo Publishing)

Juvenile Literature

by Megan E. Freeman
(Simon & Schuster)

Noah McNichol and the Backstage Ghost
by Martha Freeman
(Simon & Schuster)

Bats, Bandits, and Buggies: A Ruby and Maude Adventure
by Nancy Oswald
(Burro Books)

Literary Fiction

What If We Were Somewhere Else
by Wendy J. Fox
(Santa Fe Writers Project)

Site Fidelity: Stories
by Claire Boyles
(W. W. Norton & Company)

Jeremy Bannister, or The Ups and Downs of an Aspiring Novelist
by Gary Reilly (posthumously by Mark Stevens)
(Running Meter Press)


Red Rabbit on the Run
by Jodi Bowersox
(JB Artistry)

Canyonlands Carnage: A National Park Mystery
by Scott Graham
(Torrey House Press)

Break Bone Fever: A Finnerty and Liccione Mystery
by Wanda Venters and Mary Rae
(Written Dreams Publishing)


We the Jury
by Wayne Miller
(Milkweed Editions)

Barefoot and Running
by Morgan Liphart
(Morgan Liphart)

by Ruth Obee
(Ruth Obee)

White Lung
by Kimberly O’Connor
(Saturnalia Books)

Science Fiction/Fantasy

The Reincarnationist Papers
by D. Eric Maikranz
(Blackstone Publishing)

Khyven the Unkillable
by Todd Fahnestock
(New Mythology Press)

Magic and Misrule
by KM Merritt
(Blue Fyre Press)


The Dead Husband: A Novel
by Carter Wilson

My Heart is a Chainsaw
by Stephen Graham Jones
(Simon & Schuster)

The Secret Next Door: A Novel
by Rebecca Taylor

Young Adult Literature

Rise of the Red Hand
by Olivia Chadha
(Erewhon Books)

To Break a Covenant
by Alison Ames
(Page Street Publishing)

Girl on the Ferris Wheel
by Julie Halpern and Len Vlahos
(Macmillan Publishing)

Past Winners and Finalists

Congratulations to our winners and finalists! Click the buttons below to view category definitions and past award recipients.

Children’s Literature
Creative Nonfiction
General Fiction
General Nonfiction
Genre Fiction
Historical Fiction
Juvenile Literature
Literary Fiction
Science Fiction/Fantasy
Young Adult
Lifetime Award

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