The Kootenay Literary Competition awards were handed out at a gala event at the Prestige Lakeside Resort in Nelson on Friday, March 14.
Local winners were able to attend to receive their awards and offer a few words, but because the competition has started to draw in participants from across the Kootenays, not all of the winning authors could make the journey to Nelson.
The judges had a chance to talk about the entries and the range of writing they assessed from each category and it was clear they felt the work this year was of a high calibre. Two winners were selected in each of the five categories, as follows:
Youth Grades 7-9: Hannah Klemmensen of Rossland with Midnight Hangout, and Zoey Lowe of Golden, with The Cold.
Youth Grades 10-12: James Havelock Turner of Nelson, with Giu Andare, and Emily Hoff of Ymir, with A New Reality.
Adult Fiction: Eli Geddis of Nelson with Ninety Corn Dogs and a Porcupine, and Roz Nay of Nelson with The Innocence.
Adult Creative Non-Fiction: Leslie Davidson of Grand Forks with Hold On, and Graham Kenyon of Rossland with Salvation.
Adult Poetry: Jordan Mounteer of Winlaw with Helical, and Cheryl Thornton of Salmo with Grief is a Strange Companion.
The Richard Carver Award, to honour an emerging local writer, went to Nelson poet Jane Byers. Carver was a key member of the Nelson and District Arts Council (NDAC), and the award is a partnership between NDAC and the KLC, and the winner was chosen with support of the Kootenay Library Federation.
There was also a reading by Fernie author Angie Abdou and music by LVR jazz band Swing Theory.
The Kootenay Literary Competition Anthology Refuge is available to order for distribution through Otter Books in Nelson or at kootenaylitcomp.com for $7.
Photos below provided by Colin Payne.