Presenting the winners of the 2023 Ohioana Awards

The 2023 Ohioana Book Award Winners.

It’s that time of year again! The Ohioana Library is pleased to announce the winners of the 2023 Ohioana Awards. Each year, juried awards are given to books in six categories: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, About Ohio/an Ohioan, Middle Grade/Young Adult Literature, and Juvenile Literature. Fans have the opportunity to make their voices heard by selecting the Readers’ Choice Book Award from among all thirty finalists in an online poll. Finally, we present a special prize for emerging writers, the Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant.

Ohioana Book Awards

First given in 1942, the Ohioana Book Awards are the second oldest, and among the most prestigious, state literary prizes in the nation. Nearly every major writer from Ohio in the past 80 years has been honored, from James Thurber to Toni Morrison.

Six of the Ohioana Award winners, as well as the Marvin Grant recipient, were selected by juries. The Readers’ Choice Award was determined by voters in a public online poll. Over 2,000 votes were cast for this year’s Readers’ Choice Award.

Listed below are the 2023 Ohioana Book Award winners. Click on the title to learn more about the author and their winning book.

Nonfiction: Ross Gay, Inciting Joy

Fiction: Celeste Ng, Our Missing Hearts

Poetry: Saeed Jones, Alive at the End of the World

About Ohio or an Ohioan: Kelcey Ervick, The Keeper: Soccer, Me, and the Law That Changed Women’s Lives

Middle Grade/Young Adult: Jasmine Warga, A Rover’s Story

Juvenile: Marcy Campbell, The More You Give

Readers’ Choice: John Scalzi, The Kaiju Preservation Society

Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant

2023 Ohioana Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant Winner Kortney Morrow.

The Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant is a competitive prize. Named for Ohioana’s second director and given since 1982, the Marvin Grant is awarded to an Ohio writer age 30 or younger who has not yet published a book. The 2023 Marvin Grant winner is Kortney Morrow. Kortney spent her early years making up stories, and she never stopped. Her writing has been featured or is forthcoming in The Academy of American Poets, Obsidian, Prairie Schooner, and Transition Magazine. When she’s not writing, you can find her daydreaming on her front porch. Kortney lives in Cleveland, where she was born and raised. Her winning entry will appear in this fall’s Ohioana Quarterly

Awards Ceremony

The 2023 Ohioana Awards ceremony will be held on Thursday, September 21, at 6:00 p.m. in the atrium of the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus. More information about the event and purchasing tickets is coming soon.

Interested in being a judge or screener for the Ohioana Awards? Click the link below for more information on how to get involved!

Judges and Screeners

Information and rules of eligibility for the Ohioana Book Awards and the Marvin Grant can be found via the links below.