New Mexico Book Co-op

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2011 New Mexico Book Awards

New Mexico Book Awards

the best books in
New Mexico & the Southwest

Each year, the New Mexico Book Awards Program honors special New Mexico authors/publishers for their special contributions to New Mexico's book community. In 2011, the New Mexico Book Awards will present Friends of New Mexico Books Awards to Max Evans (Albuquerque) and Sabra Brown Steinsiek (Albuquerque). The Friends of New Mexico Authors Award will be given to David Steinberg (Albuquerque), Anne Hillerman (Santa Fe) and Jean Schaumberg (Santa Fe) for their support of local New Mexico books. The complete list of honorees is below.



Max Evans (Albuquerque)
Max Evans is one of the best-known New Mexico writers with over 25 books like:
The Rounders, Bluefeather Fellini, Madam Millie, and Hi Lo Country. Evans’ newest book, a Finalist in the 2010 New Mexico Book Awards, is War and Music. The Rounders 50th anniversary edition was re-released in the fall of 2010. Ol’ Max has been a rancher, miner, trapper, and prospector while all the time a cowboy. He now lives in Albuquerque with his wife. Evans has written books, articles, and many of his books were made into movies. He has won many awards including the Owen Wister Award for lifetime contributions to literature from the Western Writers of America.

Sabra Brown Steinsiek (Albuquerque)
Sabra Brown Steinsiek is the author the prize-winning Timing Is Everything, Annie’s Song, and The Tale of the Pronghorned Cantaloupe as well as two other novels and a book of haiku poetry. In 2008, after bemoaning the lack of reviews for small press books, Steinsiek started an online website,, that would review only New Mexico books; books about New Mexico or by a New Mexico author. With a staff of reviewers, all-volunteer, the site promised an honest and civil review to any New Mexico book for free. By the site’s first-anniversary in September 2009 more than 200 books had been reviewed. Books have always been important to Steinsiek, even before her first book was published in 2000. She has been a life-long librarian, was top summer reader repeatedly during her childhood in Carlsbad, New Mexico, and even won an essay contest in high school on “If I Ran The Library.” She is married to Will Steinsiek, executive director of ReadWest Literacy Volunteers of Rio Rancho, and mother to one son, Jared, and two outrageously spoiled cats. She lives life with an overactive imagination always engaged.

Anne Hillerman & Jean Schaumberg, WordHarvest (Santa Fe)

Anne Hillerman & Jean Schaumberg are no strangers to New Mexico books and authors. Anne and Jean founded Wordharvest in 2002, which is devoted to the art and craft of writing. Wordharvest celebrates the legacy of iconic mystery author Tony Hillerman with two writing contests: the Tony Hillerman Prize for first mystery novel which is also sponsored with St. Martin’s Press, and the Tony Hillerman Mystery Short Story Contest which is sponsored with New Mexico Magazine. They also sponsor the Tony Hillerman Writers Conference on writing techniques and the business of writing. From time to time, Wordharvest also offers one-day writing intensives featuring such topics as travel writing, memoir and writing for children. Wordharvest also sponsors the Joe Leaphorn Award which honors contributions to the world of readers and authors. WordHarvest has been a supporter of the New Mexico Book Awards since the beginning sponsoring the Mystery Category.

Anne Hillerman is also a writer and won the Best Cookbook in the 2009 New Mexico Book Awards for Santa Fe Flavors, and is a 2011 Finalist (and hopefully Winner!) for Santa Fe Gardens which she wrote with husband Don Strel.

Jean Schaumberg, born and raised in Santa Fe, has been in the book business (libraries and bookstores) since 1974. From acquisitions librarian at the Santa Fe Public Library to bookstore owner, she is an avid reader. Currently she is co-owner of WORDHARVEST. Along with business partner Anne Hillerman, she organizes writers’ workshops and conferences for writers of all abilities. Jean graduated from New Mexico Highlands University with degrees in History and Library Science.

David Steinberg (Albuquerque)
David Steinberg been a newspaper reporter/editor and wire service reporter for more than 45 years, having worked for the Miami News, Cocoa (Fla.) Today, The Associated Press in New Orleans, and the Albuquerque Journal. He has also been a (freelance) correspondent for the New York Times and Time magazine in New Mexico. Steinberg has worked for the Journal for 37 years, first in Santa Fe covering local news and the state Capitol beat before moving to Albuquerque to cover the arts. He also been the Journal's Books editor for about 23 years.

Nasario Garcia (Santa Fe)
Nasario Garcia lives in Santa Fe. He was on the faculty at NM Highlands University for a number of years and is the author of several books, including Brujas, Bultos, y Brasas and Fe y tragedias. He was one of the featured authors at the 2009 Chama Book Fair.

Demetria Martinez (Albuquerque)
Demetria Martinez lives in Albuquerque and is the author of several books, including Confessions of A Berlitz Tape Chicana. She was one of the featured authors at the 2009 Chama Book Fair.

Derek Buschman (Albuquerque)
Derek Buschman was the general manager at the Borders at Cottonwood Crossing for several years. He was an avid supporter of local books and featured many local authors at events at that store.


Michael McGarrity (Santa Fe)
Michael McGarrity lives in Santa Fe and is most know for his novel Tularosa. He has since written many books and has won the New Mexico Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts. He often lectures at the Hillerman Conference.

Joe Sando (Albuquerque)
Joe Sando lives in Albuquerque but is also very attached to the Jemez Pueblo and the Sun Clan. He has be instrumental in encouraging Native American writers and it speaking on Native American history. He wrote Popé among many other books.

Howard Bryan (Albuquerque)
Howard Bryan lives in Albuquerque. He has written Albuquerque Remembered and received Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 1994. He also won the Spur Award from Western Writers of America for Incredible Elfego Baca. He was a journalist for 42 years.

Joe Wesbrook (Albuquerque)
Joe Wesbrook was the Marketing Manager at the University of New Mexico Press and now works part time at Bookworks in Albuquerque. He first love is New Mexico Books and bees. He has been a frequent contributor to the New Mexico Book Co-op.

Denise Chavez (Las Cruces)
Chavez is an author, playwright, director, actress, activist, and lecturer. The Mexican culture is a constant theme in her books as she grew up and lives in Las Cruces. One of the many things she is known for is the annual Border Book Festival in Old Mesilla which is celebrating its 14th year promoting literature of the Southwest. She is an award winning author and has written numerous books including Loving Pedro Infante, Face of an Angel, and the Taco Testimony.

David Morrell (Santa Fe)
Morrell is a Canadian transplant who taught at the University of Iowa. He now lives in Santa Fe. He might be best known for his ”Rambo” books. He is considered the “Father of modern action novels.” His books have been turned into films and television series. With over thirty books, Morrell is best known for First Blood, Brotherhood of the Rose, and Burnt Sienna. He is a guest instructor at the Hillerman Mystery Writers Workshop.

Ruthe Francis (Albuquerque)
Francis is an author or publisher’s best friend. She has had a long career as a reader, bookseller and now as a book consultant. She advises authors and publishers on how to write their books, their covers, and how to market their books. Many of the books she edited have been selected as Winners in the New Mexico Book Awards. She has been an active participant in the New Mexico Book Co-op since its beginning and has been a Board Member in the New Mexico Book Association. She is the first recipient for the Friends of New Mexico Authors from the New Mexico Book Awards.

Tony Hillerman (Los Ranchos)
Hillerman was born is Sacred Heart, Oklahoma, and now lives in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque. He was a reporter in Texas, Oklahoma, and Santa Fe. He finally settled in Albuquerque and taught at the University of New Mexico. He has written many books and may be known across the world “as the New Mexican author.” Thanks to his daughter Anne, he now has a yearly mystery writers workshop — the Tony Hillerman Mystery Writers Workshop and an annual writers contest by Wordharvest and partners. His books have been turned into movies, television shows, and specials.

Rudolfo Anaya (Albuquerque)
Born in Pastura, New Mexico, Anaya now lives across the river in Albuquerque. He has been called the "Father of modern Chicano literature." Anaya began his career as a public school teacher and later taught at the University of New Mexico. His first novel, Bless Me Ultima has received countless awards, including the 2007 People's Choice Award from the New Mexico Book Awards. He has gone on to publish many books about the Hispanic culture of New Mexico. His four seasons collection talked about the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta and Jemez Springs. He has made it possible for many writers to be published.