SHERIDAN — Nominations for the 12th annual High Plains Book Awards will open Jan. 11. Nominations will be accepted through March 8. Information and nomination forms can be found online at highplainsbookawards.org.

The Billings Public Library Board of Directors established the High Plains Book Awards in 2006 to recognize regional authors and literary works that examine and reflect life on the High Plains. The High Plains region includes: Montana, North and South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas and the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan region.

In 2017 the High Plains Book Awards Board established nonprofit status and now functions as an independent entity while still collaborating with the Billings Public Library.

The 2019 awards include 12 book categories that include: art and photography, children’s book, creative nonfiction, fiction, first book, indigenous writer medicine/science, nonfiction, poetry, short stories, woman writer and young adult. New this year is the Big Sky Montana book that will be selected from category nominations.

Nominated books must be published for the first time in 2018. Winners will receive $500 and will be announced at the awards banquet that is held in conjunction with the High Plains Book Fest. The 2019 High Plains Book Awards and High Plains Book Fest will take place Oct. 18-19.

All nominated books are read and evaluated by community readers. Finalist books in each category will be announced in June 2019. Winners in each category will be determined by a panel of published writers with connections to the High Plains region.

For more information, contact Shari Nault, High Plains Book Awards president, at 406-672-6223 or shari2redlodge@gmail.com.