The Michael L. Printz Award is an award for a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature. It will be selected annually by an award committee that can also name as many as four honor books. The award-winning book can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry or an anthology, and can be a work of joint authorship or editorship. The books must be published between January 1 and December 31 of the preceding year and be designated by its publisher as being either a young adult book or one published for the age range that YALSA defines as young adult, i.e. ages 12 through 18. The deadline for both committee and field nominations will be December 1.
The selection committee for the award consists of nine YALSA members appointed by the vice-president/president-elect for a one-year term. Beginning in 2002, four members of the committee will be elected by the membership.
This award "serves notice on the reading, publishing, and bookselling communities that young adult literature has come of age", says Michael Cart, Chair of the Best Young Adult Book Award Feasibility Task Force. The task force laid the groundwork for the award that was approved by the YALSA Board in January, 1999. You can also read about the award criteria and policies.