Announcing the winners of the 2022 Minnesota Author Project!

Congratulations to the winners of the 2022 Minnesota Author Project! The contest seeks to publicize the role libraries have long played in introducing readers to new authors. Being recognized by librarians creates credibility and visibility for indie authors in a growing marketplace of digital content and indie-published books. 

This is the fifth year celebrating the contest, which recognizes the best indie-published authors in Minnesota.

The Self-Working Trick (and other stories)— Adult Fiction

Scales of Ash & Smoke— Young Adult Fiction


Bringing Joy (Communities Create)

The Communities Create category, in its third year, celebrates Minnesota organizations and communities that are producing written creative works, especially with the support of their local library.

Winners will receive $2,000 and a commemorative award, as well as other accolades and perks. Prizes are sponsored by the Minnesota Library Foundation and BiblioLabs.

This is a statewide effort. MN Writes MN Reads extends a special thanks to the volunteer judges from across who made this possible, as well as all Minnesota library staff, for supporting these writers. Join us in celebrating and supporting them! 

Read the winners now on BiblioBoard Library.

Finalist Feature: Exploring Language & Identity

Category: Communities Create

Description: Exploring Language & Identity: The Experiences of ELL/ESL Students is a collection of stories and experiences from English Language (EL) students.

Read it now!

We asked Laichia Vang, Editor, “What does the library mean to your organization or the creation of your work?”

“When I started planning and organizing this work, I wanted to ensure that as many people as possible could access this book. If I wanted to spread awareness about the experiences of English Language Learner youth and influence change in our education systems, it was imperative to disrupt the barriers to accessibility. That meant the books were free. That meant that I mailed or dropped off the books to readers. That meant that I provided a significant amount of my work to libraries, especially school libraries that could directly impact EL students and teachers. Libraries are buildings of knowledge, but it is also a building of hope. A haven to explore, a place to develop an understanding of the flaws in our world, and a community that can foresee opportunities for growth in ourselves to our society’s systems. Without libraries and mentors in these spaces, I never would have known where to give out these books or how to ensure that my books do not fall into the abyss of nobody ever reading them. Nor would I have known about the Minnesota Author Project. Libraries are a place of endless opportunities, a place for books like mine that let youth know that they are not alone, a building that is or is working towards the epitome of accessibility.”

Finalist Feature: Hmong American Experiences During the Pandemic

Category: Communities Create

Description: Hmong Museum presents its first digital zine. We had a call out to Hmong American artists and 26 artists responded. The zine documents Hmong American experiences during the pandemic from Hmong American youth and young adults. They includes creative writing, visual arts, and multimedia format.

Read it now!

Organization: The Hmong Museum in Saint Paul, Minnesota is the first museum of its kind, dedicated to the preservation of Hmong history, arts, and materials, in the nation. Established in 2015, we are currently a museum without walls and instead partner with local cultural organizations to bring engaging intergenerational programs to the community. The Hmong Museum exists to recognize and acknowledge the intersections of all things Hmong. This includes the documenting of arts, history, folk tales, personal and family histories, traditional knowledge, current issues, and many more.

We asked Hmong Musueum, “What does the library mean to your organization or the creation of your work?”

“The library has been a wonderful partner for Hmong Museum…The Library is a safe and central space that helps us reach our community and provides support for Hmong Museum. As a Museum without walls, we depend on spaces like the library to meet our community where they are at.”