SALT LAKE CITY — More than 50 works, from picture books and literature to screen plays and films, that are by, for or about members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been named finalists across 14 categories for the Association for Mormon Letters awards.
The awards will be announced at the 2019 Association for Mormon Letters Conference March 29-31 at the Berkeley Institute of Religion of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Berkeley, California.
The conference includes presentations of a variety of scholarly papers and sessions, including the legacy of Latter-day Saint poetry in Spanish and various literary topics from the Book of Mormon.
Author Carol Lynn Pearson will receive the Association for Mormon Letters Lifetime Achievement Award and also present a reading at the conference. Melissa Leilani Larson, who wrote the screenplay for “Jane and Emma” and “Freetown,” will receive the Smith-Pettit Foundation Award for Outstanding Contribution to Mormon Letters. A special award in publishing will go to “Dove Song: Heavenly Mother in Mormon Poetry," published by Peculiar Pages, edited by Tyler Chadwick, Dayna Patterson and Martin Pulido.
Finalists for novels are “Witchy Winter” by D.J. Butler, “The Apocalypse of Morgan Turner” by Jennifer Quist and “The Infinite Future” by Tim Wirkus.
In the short fiction collection category, the finalists are “The Science of Lost Futures” by Ryan Habermeyer, “Revolver” by Heidi Naylor and “Beyond the Lights” by Ryan Shoemaker.
Finalists in the short fiction category are“Thin Walls” by Alison Maeser Brimley, “All Light and Darkness” by Amy Henrie Gillett, “Tower” by Ryan McIlvain and “Light Departure” by Ryan Shoemaker.
In the drama category, the finalists are “Good Standing” by Matthew Greene and “The Shower Principle” by Ariel Mitchell.
Finalists in the poetry category are “The Lapidary’s Nosegay” by Lara Candland, “What the Body Knows” by Lance Larsen, “The God Mask” by Javen Tanner and “Half-Hazard” by Kristen Tracy.
In the young adult novel category, the finalists are “Daughter of the Siren Queen” by Tricia Levenseller, “The Traitor’s Game" by Jennifer A. Nielsen, “Skyward” by Brandon Sanderson and “The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein” by Kiersten White.
Finalists in the middle grade novel category are “Where the Watermelons Grow” by Cindy Baldwin, “Wishes & Wellingtons” by Julie Berry, “Squint” by Chad Morris and Shelley Brown, “Resistance” by Jennifer A. Nielsen and “Grump: The (Fairly) True Tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves” by Liesl Shurtliff.
For the picture book category, the finalists are “The Dress and the Girl” by Camille Andros and Julie Morstad, “Jesus is Born: A Flashlight Discovery Book” by Shauna Gibby and Casey Nelson, “If Wendell Had a Walrus” by Lori Mortensen and Matt Phelan, “If Da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur” by Amy Newbold and Greg Newbold, and “The Princess in Black and the Science Fair Scare” by Shannon Hale, Dean Hale and LeUyen Pham.
In the comics category, the finalists are “Green Monk: Blood of the Martyrs” by Brandon Dayton, “Comic Diaries, Vol. 1” by Brittany Long Olsen, “SkyHeart Book One: The Search for the Star Seed” by Jake Parker, “Cooties No. 11” by Nick Perkins and “One Dirty Tree” by Noah Van Sciver.
In the creative nonfiction category, the finalists are “Destroying Their God: How I Fought My Evil Half-Brother to Save My Children” by Wallace Jeffs, “How the Light Gets In” by Keira Shae and “Educated: A Memoir” by Tara Westover.
In the religious nonfiction category, the finalists are “Faith Is Not Blind” by Elder Bruce C. Hafen and Sister Marie K. Hafen, “An Early Resurrection: Life in Christ Before you Die” by Adam S. Miller, “The Power of Godliness: Mormon Liturgy and Cosmology” by Jonathan Stapley, “On Fire in Baltimore: Black Mormon Women and Conversion in a Raging City” by Laura Rutter Strickling, and “Thou Art the Christ, the Son of the Living God" edited by Eric D. Huntsman, Lincoln H. Blumell and Tyler J. Griffin.
Finalists in the criticism category are “Mormon Cinema: Origins to 1952” by Randy Astle, “Low and the Hermeneutics of Silence” by Jacob Bender, “Isms and Prisms: A Mormon View on Writing About Nature and Women” by Ángel Chaparro-Sainz, “Mormon Poetry, 2012 to the Present” by Bert Fuller and “A Book About the Film Monty Python’s Life of Brian” by Darl Larsen.Comment on this story
In the narrative film category, the finalists are “Jane and Emma,” “The Long Haul,” “Passenger Seat” and “When She Runs.”
Finalists in the documentary film category are “Believer, “Church & State,” “The Insufferable Groo” and “States of America.”
The association was founded in 1976 to “foster a critical and creative literature by, for, and about Mormons, and to provide fellowship among scholars and writers of the same,” according to the news release from the association.
For information, see associationmormonletters.org/blog/category/about-aml.