Well, 2012 will be all done and dusted in three weeks, and it's time to vote for your favourite novel by an LDS author in the annual Whitney Awards.
The Whitneys are an awards program for novels by LDS authors. Elder Orson F. Whitney, an early apostle in the Church, prophesied “We will yet have Miltons and Shakespeares of our own.” At an annual gala the talent of LDS authors is recognised and celebrated. It highlights the tremendous talent of LDS authors who have written clean romances, thrillers with a moral message, and uplifting stories set firmly within the Mormon mindset. It celebrates these people becoming household names despite not including base language, graphic scenes or other objectionable content. In short, it celebrates all that is wonderful about literature, and honours those of us who write it and happen to be Mormon.
Stephanie Black (who wins the mystery/suspense category every year) pointed out to me yesterday that one of the wonderful things about the Whitneys is that they are a level playing field. Stephenie Meyer, Shannon Hale and Orson Scott Card (had they published books this year) would have the same chance of winning as an unknown busy mother who self-published her first romance novel. It's about the book itself and how much the readers enjoyed it, not about sales figures, marketing or critical acclaim. There can be–and have been–surprise winners.
I have two eligible books this year. No Escape was published at the very start of the year, and The Saved Saint was self-published just over a month ago, although my co-author for that one isn't LDS so I'm not sure it's eligible. I'm under no illusion that I'm in with any chance of winning though, because there are just so many amazingly good LDS writers, and so many fantastic books have been released this year.
Have you read a book by an LDS author that you loved? Vote while you still can! Go to http://whitneyawards.com/wordpress/. It's not the Booker Prize, but it's a lovely way to let your favourite LDS author know that their efforts are worthwhile.