Presenting the winners of the 2019 Ohioana Awards!


Fiction: Moriel Rothman-Zecher, Sadness is a White Bird
Nonfiction: David Giffels, Furnishing Eternity
About Ohio or an Ohioan: Wil Haygood, Tigerland
Poetry: Marcus Jackson, Pardon My Heart
Middle Grade / Young Adult: Ellen Klages, Out of Left Field
Juvenile Literature: Jacqueline Woodson, The Day You Begin
Reader’s Choice: Rachel Wiley, Nothing Is Okay
The Ohioana Book Awards are the second oldest, and among the most prestigious, state literary prizes in the nation. Nearly every notable Ohio writer of the past 78 years has been honored.


The first Ohioana Book Award, presented in 1942, was given in the category of nonfiction to James Reston’s Prelude to Victory.

Awards for juvenile literature and fiction were first presented in 1943, followed in 1944 by poetry and “book about Ohio/Ohioan,”and in 2014, middle grade/young adult literature. To these juried awards, we added a Readers’ Choice Award in 2016, allowing readers to choose their favorite book from among the finalists selected by judges.

Over the years, Ohioana has given non-book awards, including the Career Award, Ohioana Citations, the Pegasus Award, the James P. Barry Award for Editorial Excellence, the Helen and Laura Krout Memorial Poetry Award, and the Alice Louise Wood Memorial Children’s Literature Award. Although these were suspended in 2011 due to funding cuts, Ohioana continues to give the Ohioana Book Awards each year to recognize outstanding literary achievement by Ohio writers and on Ohio subjects.

In addition to the book awards, we present the annual Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant for an Ohio writer age 30 or younger who has not yet published a book.

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