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Michigan Author Award


The Michigan Author Award was established in 1992 with the intention of recognizing significant Michigan authors with a lifetime achievement award. Previously developed by the Michigan Library Association, the award is now facilitated by the Library of Michigan and Michigan Center for the Book. The Michigan Author Award Work Group members consist of an assemblage of librarians, both public and academic, from across the state. Over the years the award has been given to a diverse collection of writers working in a variety of genres and styles.


Anyone is eligible to submit a nomination. The author must meet the following qualifications to be considered eligible for the award:

  • The author must either be a current resident of Michigan, a long-time resident of Michigan recently relocated or an author whose works are identified with Michigan because of subject matter and/or setting in Michigan.
  • The author's work may be in the form of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, or any other literary format the Michigan Author Award Group finds acceptable. 
  • The author must have a body of work encompassing at least three published titles for adults, teens, or children.
  • Authors who self-publish are eligible for consideration, as long as their work is available in libraries.
  • The author must be living at the time of the nomination.
  • The author must have a publishing career spanning a minimum of five years.

To learn more about the award, contact the Library of Michigan at


Nominations for the 2021 Michigan Author Award has ended.

List of Previous Winners

  • 1992 Dan Gerber
  • 1993 Charles Baxter
  • 1994 Nancy Willard
  • 1995 Janet Kauffman
  • 1996 Elmore Leonard
  • 1997 Loren Estleman
  • 1998 Gloria Whelan
  • 1999 Jerry Dennis
  • 2000 Janie Lynn Panagopoulos
  • 2001 Thomas Lynch
  • 2002 Nicholas Delbanco
  • 2003 Diane Wakoski
  • 2004 Patricia Polacco
  • 2005 Christopher Paul Curtis
  • 2006 Steve Hamilton
  • 2007 Sarah Stewart
  • 2008 Tom Stanton
  • 2009 Dave Dempsey
  • 2010 John Smolens
  • 2011 Gary Schmidt
  • 2012 Bonnie Jo Campbell
  • 2013 Laura Kasischke
  • 2014 Jim Harrison
  • 2015 David Small
  • 2016 Jacqueline Carey
  • 2017 Doc Fletcher
  • 2018 Beverly Jenkins
  • 2019 Jaimy Gordon
  • 2020 Mitch Albom
  • 2021 Larry Massie


Last updated: 3/3/2022