KANSAS CITY, Mo., May 11, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- In keeping with its vision to create a more emotionally connected world, Hallmark Cards today introduces the Hallmark Great Stories Award, honoring new children's picture books that celebrate family, friendship and community and that exhibit excellence in both writing and illustration. Nominations are being accepted now, and the winning book will be announced in March 2017.
"For more than 100 years, Hallmark has encouraged people to tell and share stories that celebrate the very best in the human heart and soul," said Amy Winterscheidt, director and committee chair, Hallmark Great Stories Award. "Our goal with this award is to honor stories that will endure in the minds and hearts of readers … stories that become a valued, shared memory between people. We are interested in all kinds of stories but primarily are looking for themes of togetherness and community."
Each nomination will be reviewed by a multi-disciplinary panel of judges made up of experts in the fields of children's storytelling, literacy, child development and library science. Also, each year a senior Hallmark artist and writer will serve on the selection committee. For the inaugural year, judges include: Elizabeth (Betsy) Bird, Evanston Public Library, Evanston, Ill. and blogger at A Fuse #8 Production; Alfredo Lujan, Monte de Sol Charter School, Santa Fe, N.M.; Alan Bailey, associate professor, East Carolina University, Greenville, N.C.; Cheri Sterman, director of education, Crayola; Melvina Young, Hallmark senior writer; and Daniel Miyares, Hallmark senior artist.
Eligible picture books include those published by publishers in the United States between January 1 and December 31, 2016. Books must be entered into the competition by the publisher. Only finished picture books are eligible; self-published books are not eligible.
The winning picture book's author and illustrator each will receive a special award medal and $5,000. If the author and illustrator is the same individual, the cash prize is $10,000. In addition to traditional distribution, the winning picture book will be available in Hallmark Gold Crown® stores nationwide.
Publishers should visit http://hallmarkgreatstoriesaward.com/ to learn more or to submit a nomination.
For more than 100 years, privately held Hallmark has been dedicated to creating a more emotionally connected world. In the U.S., products offered by Hallmark Greetings, Hallmark Retail and Hallmark Home & Gifts can be found in more than 40,000 retail accounts including mass retailers, Hallmark Gold Crown® stores and online. Hallmark's family of companies also includes Crayola®, maker of creative art tools and toys, Crown Center, a mixed-use entertainment, office and residential district in Kansas City, and Hallmark International, which offers products in more than 30 languages available in 100 countries. Hallmark also is a majority stakeholder in Crown Media Holdings, Inc., which owns and operates cable television's Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., Hallmark employs more than 27,000 people worldwide. For more information, visit Hallmark.com. Connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
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