Council for Wisconsin Writers
Press Release

2017 Wisconsin Writers Awards Announced by Council for Wisconsin Writers

Awards will be presented at the Council’s annual banquet to be held this year on May 12 in Milwaukee.

By - Mar 31st, 2018 12:06 pm

Sixteen Wisconsin writers have won First Place and Honorable Mention in the Council for Wisconsin Writers contests for work published in 2017. The Council will award each winner $500 and a week-long writing residency at Shake Rag Alley in Mineral Point. Honorable mentions will receive $50 and a residency at Painted Forest, Valton, WI. Awards will be presented at the Council’s annual banquet to be held this year on May 12 in Milwaukee.

Matt Cashion of La Crosse has won the Edna Ferber Fiction Book Award for Our 13th Divorcepublished by Livingston Press. Honorable mention goes to Kathleen Ernst of Middleton for Mining for Justice, published by Midnight Ink.

Dave Zweifel and John Nichols, co-authors of The Capital Times, Wisconsin Historical Society Press, and both of Madison, share the Norbert Blei/August Derleth Nonfiction Book Award. Heather Swan of Madison receives honorable mention for Where Honeybees ThrivePennsylvania State University Press.

Matthew Guenette of Madison takes the Edna Meudt Poetry Book Award for his Vasectomania, University of Akron Press. Honorable mention goes to Crystal Spring Gibbins of Washburn for her Now/Here, Holy Cow Press.

Shelly Tougas of Hudson has won the Tofte/Wright Children’s Literary Award for Laura Ingalls is Ruining My Life, Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press. Dean Robbins of Madison is receiving honorable mention for Margaret and the Moon, Knopf.

Bob Wake of Cambridge is winner of the Zona Gale Award for Short Fiction for “Mudstone,” Wisconsin People and Ideas. Matt Cashion, La Crosse, receives honorable mention for “What Kills You,” Carolina Quarterly.

Ronnie Hess of Madison is receiving the Kay W. Levin Short Nonfiction Award for “Berlin Letters,” Poor Yorick Literary Journal. Tamara Thomsen, Paul Reckner and Richard J. Boyd all of Madison share honorable mention for “Solving the Mystery of the SS. Lakeland,” Wisconsin Magazine of History.

Ed Werstein of Milwaukee has won the Lorine Niedecker Poetry Award for five individual poems. Honorable mention goes to Margaret Benbow of Madison.

Contest winners and honorable mentions were selected by out-of-state judges.

Friends of Lorine Niedecker is receiving the Christopher Latham Sholes Award. This award, which includes a $500 prize, is named for Christopher Latham Sholes (1819–1890), a Wisconsinite who is credited with inventing the first practical typewriter and honors an individual or organization for outstanding encouragement of Wisconsin writers. The Friends of Lorine Niedecker is dedicated to preserving and expanding the legacy of Wisconsin poet Lorine Niedecker (1903-1970) who is widely recognized in the world of poetry as the only woman associated with the Objectivist poets.

The public is invited to celebrate our state’s fine writers at the CWW’s Awards Banquet at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 12, at the Wisconsin Club in Milwaukee. Banquet tickets must be reserved by Saturday, May 4.

More information about the winners, judges, banquet registration, and the Council for Wisconsin Writers can be found at its website,

NOTE: This press release was submitted to Urban Milwaukee and was not written by an Urban Milwaukee writer. It has not been verified for its accuracy or completeness.

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