National Book Festival Summer Writing Contest Winners Announced

The Library of Congress today announced the winners of its “A Book That Shaped Me”: Summer Writing Contest, a program that asks rising fifth- and sixth-graders to reflect on a book that has made a personal impact in their lives.

More than 300 young readers submitted essays to participating public libraries in the Mid-Atlantic region in this seventh year of the contest. Launched in 2012 with the DC Public Library, “A Book That Shaped Me” expanded with the help of public libraries in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. The local libraries offered the contest as part of their summer-reading programs.

Thirty finalists total, from the states that received entries, were chosen in an initial round of judging. The finalists each will receive a $50 gift-card prize.

Judging was conducted by members of the American Association of School Librarians (AASL), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). The AASL works to ensure all elementary- and secondary-school librarians participate as collaborative partners in the teaching and learning process.

The grand-prize judging round, which selected state and grand-prize winners from the pool of state finalists, was conducted by a panel assembled by the Library of Congress that included educators, children’s authors and Library of Congress staff.

Each state winner will receive another $50 gift-card prize. The first-, second- and third-place grand-prize winners will be awarded additional gift-card prizes in the amounts of $200, $150 and $100 respectively.

Grand-prize winners will read their essays during the “A Book That Shaped Me” awards presentation at the Library of Congress National Book Festival. The contest presentation will take place at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018 at 11:50 a.m. at the Children’s Green Stage and will be emceed by Eun Yang, NBC4 Washington television anchor. 

Grand Prize & State Winners

1st Place Grand Prize & Pennsylvania State Winner
Tyler Williams, Spring City Free Library - Chester County Library System, who wrote about the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling.

2nd Place Grand Prize Winner & Virginia State Winner
Aria Patnaik, Reston Regional Library - Fairfax County Public Library, who wrote about “One for the Murphys” by Lynda Mullay Hunt.

3rd Place Grand Prize & Washington, D.C. Winner
Zuri Kenyatte, Anacostia Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library, who wrote about “Lucky Broken Girl” by Ruth Behar.

Delaware State Winner
Sarah Jane McMann, Hockessin Library - New Castle County Libraries, who wrote about “Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets” by J.K. Rowling.

Maryland State Winner
Alyssa Yu, Germantown Library - Montgomery County Public Libraries, who wrote about “Amina’s Voice” by Hena Kahn.

State Finalists (winners indicated by asterisks)

District of Columbia Finalists
Safya Biswal, Chevy Chase Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library
Raphael Fox, Tenley-Friendship Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library
*Zuri Kenyatte, Anacostia Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library
Ben Smith, Chevy Chase Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library
Brooke Talbott, Shaw (Watha T. Daniel) Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library
Miles Walters, Chevy Chase Neighborhood Library - DC Public Library

Maryland Finalists
Brea Ampaw, Montgomery County Public Libraries
Ellyce Butuyan, Connie Morella (Bethesda) Library - Montgomery County Public Libraries
Grace Hollenbach, White Oak Library - Montgomery County Public Libraries
Julliette Mamalian, Potomac Library - Montgomery County Public Libraries
Joseph K. Mathew, Germantown Library - Montgomery County Public Libraries
*Alyssa Yu, Germantown Library - Montgomery County Public Libraries

Virginia Finalists
Bella DeFilippi, Central Library - Arlington Public Library
Deven Hagen, Arlington Public Library
Eleanor G. Hoopengardner, Central Library - Arlington Public Library
Julienne Lim, Montclair Community Library - Prince William County Public Library
*Aria Patnaik, Reston Regional Library - Fairfax County Public Library
Landon Pollard, Bedford Central Library - Bedford Public Library

Delaware Finalists
Maggie Clarke-Fields, Brandywine Hundred Library - New Castle County
Reese Corbett, Dover Public Library
Tianyu Mao, Hockessin Library - New Castle County Libraries
*Sarah Jane McMann, Hockessin Library - New Castle County Libraries
Amrita Rai, Kirkwood Library - New Castle County Libraries
Michelle Ratanraj, Hockessin Library - New Castle County Libraries

Pennsylvania Finalists
Sienna Camlin, Perkasie Branch Library - Bucks County Free Library
Michaela Clement-St. Louis
Brayden Samuelsen, Oley Valley Community Library - Berks County Public Library
Hannah Strawhecker, Avon Grove Library - Chester County Library
Annabelle Troup, Quakertown Library - Bucks County Free Library
*Tyler Williams, Spring City Free Library - Chester County Library

The detailed list of current and previous winners, along with more information about the "A Book That Shaped Me" program, is available at loc.gov/bookfest/kids-teachers/booksthatshape/. For further details, contact booksshapecontest@loc.gov.

The 18th National Book Festival will be held Saturday, Sept. 1 from 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. (doors open at 8:30 a.m.) at the Washington Convention Center. The event is free and open to everyone.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States - and extensive materials from around the world -both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov; access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov; and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

 

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