The Michigan Author Award recognizes an outstanding published body of literary work by an author who is either from Michigan or has substantial ties to the state. The award was established in 1992 with the intention of recognizing significant Michigan authors with a lifetime achievement award. Over the years, the award has been given to a diverse collection of writers working in a variety of genres and styles. A panel of judges representing Michigan Library Association members determines the recipient on overall literary merit.

To learn more about the award, please download a PDF resource below.

Award Guidelines

Nomination form

List of Past Winners

2017 Michigan Author Award Winner - Doc Fletcher

Doc Fletcher

The Michigan Library Association (MLA) is pleased to announce Doc Fletcher as the 2017 Michigan Author Award Winner. The award will be presented at a luncheon during the MLA 2017 Annual Conference in Lansing on Wednesday, October 18, 2017.

Fletcher’s published work includes six books about the joy of paddling Michigan's rivers, "Weekend Canoeing in Michigan", "Michigan Rivers Less Paddled", “Paddling Michigan’s Hidden Beauty”, “Michigan’s Pere Marquette River: Paddling Through Its History”, “Paddling Michigan’s Pine: Tales From the River” and his latest book, “Canoeing and Kayaking College Campuses in Michigan”.

A selected group of MLA members determine the award recipient on overall literary merit.  To be eligible, authors must be a current resident of Michigan, a long-time resident of Michigan, recently relocated or an author whose works are identified with Michigan because of subject and/or setting. 

“The committee selected Jeffrey “Doc” Fletcher for this year’s award because of his passion for the state and what it offers in natural beauty," said Michigan Author Award Work Group Chair James Pugh. "We felt that as an author he captures what it means to be a Michigander through adventures up north on the river. Michigan is lucky to have such an adoring fan of its great outdoors who shares his affection through authorship and advocacy.”

Fletcher was born 1954 in Detroit, Michigan near the Main Branch of the Rouge River. He is a 1976 graduate of Eastern Michigan University, the school where he met and fell in love with his future bride, Maggie. They were married August 8, 1981 on the banks of the Huron River in Ypsilanti. Fletcher took his first canoe trip in 1978 on the Pere Marquette River and ever since then gets back into a canoe or kayak whenever possible. For Michigan-Out-Of-Doors segments, he joined co-host Jimmy Gretzinger in paddling the length of the Sturgeon River and the headwaters of the Pere Marquette River.

Read the official press release here.

Past Michigan Author Award Winners include: Jacqueline Carey, David Small, Tom Stanton, Sarah Stewart, Steve Hamilton, Christopher Paul Curtis, Patricia Polacco, Dan Gerber, Charles Baxter, Nancy Willard, Janet Kauffman, Elmore Leonard, Loren Estleman, Gloria Whelan, Jerry Dennis, Janie Lynn Panagopoulos, Thomas Lynch, Nicholas Delbanco, Diane Wakoski, Dave Dempsey, John Smolens, Gary Schmidt, Bonnie Jo Campbell, Laura Kasischke, and Jim Harrison.