Colorado Book Award finalists are scheduled to read in-person at Pikes Peak Library District branches in Colorado Springs, beginning in mid-April and running through early June. Attendees will have the chance to pose questions and talk with the finalists, and finalist books will be available for purchase at the readings and through Poor Richard’s Books & Gifts. See the reading schedule here.
About the books
Finding Querencia: Essays from In-Between by Harrison Candelaria Fletcher
Finding Querencia: Essays from In-Between is nominated in the Creative Nonfiction category and was published by The Ohio State University Press in April 2022 as part of the Machete series edited by Joy Castro at Mad Creek Books.
From the publisher: With its roots in the Spanish verb querer—“to want, to love”—the term querencia has been called untranslatable but has come to mean a place of safety and belonging, that which we yearn for when we yearn for home. In this striking essay collection, Harrison Candelaria Fletcher shows that querencia is also a state of being: the peace that arises when we reconcile who we are. A New Mexican of mixed Latinx and white ethnicity, Candelaria Fletcher ventures into the fault lines of culture, landscape, and spirit to discover the source of his lifelong hauntings. Writing in the persona of coyote, New Mexican slang for “mixed,” he explores the hyphenated elements within himself, including his whiteness. Blending memory, imagination, form, and language, each essay spirals outward to investigate, accept, and embrace hybridity. Ultimately, Finding Querencia offers a new vocabulary of mixed-ness, a way to reconcile the crosscurrents of self and soul.
Buy the book here!
Harrison Candelaria Fletcher is the author of the memoir, Presentimiento: A Life in Dreams, the essay collection, Descanso for My Father: Fragments of a Life, and his newest book, Finding Querencia: Essays from In Between. He is the recipient of a 2022 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship in Prose, the Autumn House Press Nonfiction Prize, the Colorado Book Award, the New Mexico-Arizona Book Award, the Independent Publisher Book Awards Bronze Medal, a Kirkus Reviews Best Indie Memoir selection, and a “Top Ten Latinx Author of 2017” designation by Latino Stories. He also has been a finalist for the International Latino Book Award, the National Magazine Award, and the Breadloaf Bakeless Literary Prize.
His work has appeared widely in such venues as New Letters, TriQuarterly, Puerto del Sol, Best of Brevity, Best of Pilgrimage, Brief Encounters, The Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction and Advanced Creative Nonfiction: A Writer’s Guide and Anthology. His other honors include the New Letters Literary Award, High Desert Journal Obsidian Prize, Sonora Review Essay Award, Juxtaprose Nonfiction Award, Pushcart Prize Special Mention, Best American Essays Notable selection, and residency fellowships from the Arizona Poetry Center, Vermont Studio Center, PlatteForum and Art 342.
A native of Albuquerque’s North Valley, he is a former columnist, feature writer and beat reporter at newspapers throughout the West. He teaches in the MFA in Writing Programs at Vermont College of Fine Arts and Colorado State University.
I|I by Katherine Indermaur
I|I is nominated in the Poetry category and was published by Seneca Review Books in November 2022 as the winner of the Deborah Tall Lyric Essay Book Prize.
From the publisher: Katherine Indermaur’s full-length debut, I|I, is a serial lyric essay that explores the mirror’s many dimensions—philosophical, spiritual, scientific, mythological, historical—alongside the author’s own experiences. Anyone who has struggled with the disconnect between their outward appearance and their inner self knows how fraught and fragmentary it can be to behold one’s own reflection. Indermaur’s essay, however, does more than merely problematize the contested space where the face and the mirror meet. There is also affirmation to be found here. This is a book that thinks so keenly it breaks into song.
Buy the book here!
Katherine Indermaur is the author of two chapbooks, Facing the Mirror: An Essay (Coast|noCoast, 2020) and Pulse (Ghost City Press, 2018). Tommy Pico selected her poem “Girl Descends Asunder” as the winner of the Black Warrior Review 2019 Poetry Contest, and she was named a runner-up in the 92Y’s 2020 Discovery Poetry Contest by judges Jericho Brown, Paisley Rekdal, and Wendy Xu. Her writing has appeared in Ecotone, Frontier Poetry, New Delta Review, the Normal School, Seneca Review, and elsewhere.
Currently, Katherine is an editor for Sugar House Review and a communications professional at Colorado State University (CSU). She earned her BA from UNC-Chapel Hill in English with honors, and her MFA from CSU in creative writing, where she was the managing editor for Colorado Review. She was also awarded the 2018 Academy of American Poets Prize while at CSU.
Previously, Katherine taught creative writing and worked as an editor for Alpinist magazine. She lives in Fort Collins, Colorado with her husband, daughter, and dog, where she can often be found rock climbing, hiking, camping, practicing yoga, or setting off her kitchen’s smoke alarm.
To learn more about the Colorado Book Awards and see the full list of finalists across all categories, visit https://coloradohumanities.org/programs/colorado-book-awards/
Winners of the Colorado Book Awards will be announced on Saturday, June 10.