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2017 Alberta Literary Awards Gala

Please join us for the 2017 Alberta Literary Awards Gala on Saturday, June 10, 2017!

Time: Cocktails and mingling at 6:30 pm, Buffet dinner at 7:15 pm
Place: Maple Leaf Room, Lister Centre, University of Alberta (11613 – 87 Avenue)
Dress Code: semiformal/festive attire

Tickets are $75 each and can be purchased here.
Our speaker will be well-known blogger and social media expert Mike Morrison. His keynote address, “Why Social Media Might Be More Important Than Writing The Book Itself” is sure to be entertaining and thought-provoking. And of course we will hand out literary awards in nine categories. It’s sure to be a fun and celebratory evening, and we hope to see you there!


The Writers’ Guild of Alberta is excited to announce the finalists for the 2017 Alberta Literary Awards. Each year, the Alberta Literary Awards recognize and celebrate the highest standards of literary excellence from Alberta authors.

Winners will be announced and awards presented at the Alberta Literary Awards Gala on June 10, 2017 in the Lister Centre at the University of Alberta in Edmonton.

The WGA would like to send their congratulations to those who have been placed on this year’s Alberta Literary Awards shortlists!

Our juries deliberated on more than 220 submissions to select the following 24 finalists in eight categories. Finalists represent excellence in literary work written by Alberta authors and published or created in 2016. We encourage you to check out these fantastic titles!

The 2017 Alberta Literary Awards Shortlist:

R. Ross Annett Award for Children’s Literature (Picture Books) – Sponsored by the Under the Arch Foundation at The Calgary Foundation

  • Paige Feurer (Calgary) – And Then It Rained on Malcolm, Sky Pony Press
  • Georgia Graham (Lacombe) – Cub’s Journey Home, Red Deer Press
  • Alison Hughes (Edmonton) – What Matters, Orca Book Publishers

James H. Gray Award for Short Nonfiction – Supported by Tony Johnson

  • Austen Lee (Edmonton) – “Among Cougars and Men,” Glass Buffalo
  • Omar Mouallem (Edmonton) – “Welcoming Omar Khadr,” University Affairs
  • Shelley Youngblut (Calgary) – “House of Cards,” The Walrus

Howard O’Hagan Award for Short Story – Supported by Vanna Tessier and Guy Tessier

  • Laurie MacFayden (Edmonton) – “Haircut,” Alberta Views
  • Gisèle Villeneuve (Calgary) – “Nuit Blanche with Gendarme,” University of Alberta Press
  • Thomas Wharton (Edmonton) – “Bestiary,” Hingston & Olsen

Stephan G. Stephansson Award for Poetry – Sponsored by Stephan V. Benediktson

  • Nora Gould (Consort/Edmonton) – Selah, Brick Books
  • Helen Hajnoczky (Calgary) – Magyarázni, Coach House Books
  • Richard Harrison (Calgary) – On Not Losing My Father’s Ashes in the Flood, Wolsak and Wynn

Jon Whyte Memorial Essay Award

  • Rona Altrows (Calgary) – “Letter of Intent”
  • Mary Graham (Calgary) – “The Plight, and the Power, of the Stoney Nakoda”
  • Lee Kvern (Okotoks) – “Heavy Weight for Silence”

Gwen Pharis Ringwood Award for Drama – Sponsored by Alberta Views

  • Ellen Close & Braden Griffiths (Calgary) – My Family & Other Endangered Species
  • Mieko Ouchi (Edmonton) – I Am For You
  • Vern Thiessen (Edmonton) – Of Human Bondage

Wilfrid Eggleston Award for Nonfiction

  • Marty Klinkenberg (Edmonton) – The McDavid Effect: Connor McDavid and the New Hope for Hockey, Simon & Schuster Canada
  • Myrna Kostash (Edmonton) – The Seven Oaks Reader, NeWest Press
  • Sydney Sharpe & Don Braid (Calgary) – Notley Nation, Dundurn Press

Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction – Sponsored by the Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity

  • Lauralyn Chow (Calgary) – Paper Teeth, NeWest Press
  • Lisa J. Lawrence (Edmonton) – Rodent, Orca
  • Gisèle Villeneuve (Calgary) – Rising Abruptly, University of Alberta Press

The Writers’ Guild of Alberta gratefully acknowledges the supporters and sponsors of our 2017 Alberta Literary Awards:


  • Alberta Views
  • Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity
  • Stephan V. Benediktson
  • Under the Arch Youth Foundation


  • Tony Johnson
  • Vanna Tessier and Guy Tessier
  • WGA Board of Directors

Shortlist Readings

Our thanks to everyone who came out to the shortlist readings!

WGA Alberta Literary Awards Shortlist Reading and Celebration (YYC)

May 24th 2017 from 7:00 to 10:00pm
Shelf Life Books, 1302 4th Street SW, Calgary

Join the Writers’ Guild of Alberta to celebrate the 2017 Alberta Literary Shortlisted authors and their nominated works! There will be complimentary wine and food from Aida’s Bistro, time to visit with friends, and a series of lively readings. Free admission. Authors scheduled to read in Calgary include: Lee Kvern, Paige Feureu, Lauralyn Chow, Gisèle Villeneuve, Mary Graham, Rona Altrows, Helen Hajnoczky, Georgia Graham, Laurie McFayden, Ellen Close with Braden Griffiths, Richard Harrison, Shelley Youngblut, and Sydney Sharpe with Don Braid.

WGA Presents: An Afternoon with the Authors (YEG)

May 28, 2:00 pm
Audreys Books, 10702 Jasper Ave., Edmonton

Please join us on May 28 for “An Afternoon With the Authors.” This annual event allows us to partner with our friends at Audreys Books to feature readings by writers whose work is shortlisted for the Alberta Literary Awards. It’s always a full house when writers, readers, family, and friends gather to celebrate these authors and hear them read from their work. Refreshments will be served and books will be available for sale and signing.

Readings by: Thomas Wharton • Omar Mouallem • Rona Altrows • Sydney Sharpe and Don Braid • Laurie MacFayden • Lisa J. Lawrence • Mary Graham • Nora Gould • Austen Lee • Vern Thiessen • Alison Hughes • Katie Bickell

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