The William C. Morris YA Debut Awards

The William C. Morris YA Debut Award, first awarded in 2009, honors a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens and celebrating impressive new voices in young adult literature.

The award's namesake is William C. Morris, an influential innovator in the publishing world and an advocate for marketing books for children and young adults. Bill Morris left an impressive mark on the field of children’s and young adult literature. He was beloved in the publishing field and the library profession for his generosity and marvelous enthusiasm for promoting literature for children and teens.

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) , a division of the American Library Association (ALA), selected five books as finalists for the 2014 William C. Morris Award, which honors the year’s best books written for young adults by a previously unpublished author. YALSA will name the 2014 award winner at the Youth Media Awards at 8 a.m. on Jan. 27, in Philadelphia during the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting.

The 2014 finalists are:

  • “Charm & Strange” written by Stephanie Kuehn, published by St. Martin’s Griffin, an imprint of St. Martin’s Press, a division of Macmillan.  
  • “Sex & Violence” written by Carrie Mesrobian, published by Carolrhoda LAB, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group.  
  • “Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets” written by Evan Roskos, published by Houghton Mifflin, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.  
  • “Belle Epoque” written by Elizabeth Ross, published by Delacorte Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.  
  • “In the Shadow of Blackbirds” written by Cat Winters, published by Amulet Books, an imprint of ABRAMS.


1) Elizabeth Ross and her Belle Epoque Manuscript were discoverd by Krista Marino, Senior Editor Delacorte Books for Young Readers, during a critique at the SCBWI Summer Conference.

2) Stephanie Kuehn and Cat Winters are also members of SCBWI