The search is on for the 2024 Heavy Medal Award Committee
After nearly a year of reading, months of discussion, and 58 nominations, it’s time to form the 2024 Heavy Medal Award Committee. This committee is made up of volunteers who are serious about reading and critiquing Newbery eligible titles.
- Read the 12- 15 titles on the Heavy Medal Book List (HMBL). There are 6 titles at this point; the final list goes live on Wednesday, December 13th.
- Write an introduction blog post for at least one of the titles.
- Actively participate in online discussions of these books between December 27th and January 17th.
- Select 5 books as the Heavy Medal Finalists in late-January.
- Participate in a live ZOOM discussion of the 5 Finalists on Friday, January 19th at 1 p.m. EST. finishing with a ballot to decide the Heavy Medal Award winner. This part is not required of all HMAC members (but we hope most take part). Similar to last year, School Library Journal hosts the Zoom discussion and the idea is to replicate the live committee discussions. This session will be open for interested viewers, unlike the actual committee.
Have questions? Here are at least some of the answers:
How many members are on the HMAC? We aim for 15. This year, there is a signup deadline (Thursday December 14 at 6 p.m. EST) and will select members over the weekend. We hope to create a well-rounded and diverse committee.
Can I just read some of the books and post about those? No. Just like on the real Newbery Committee, we expect participants to read all 15 books and be prepared to discuss them online. If there’s a reason which will prevent you from reading one or two titles, though, such as access, please volunteer anyway and we’ll talk.
Do I have to post comments on the online discussions at certain times of the day? No. You can fit posts around your schedule. But you will need to find ways to discuss as many books as you can. The only “live” element is the Zoom discussion.
Can I volunteer for the HMAC if I’ve already done it in past years? Yes. Returnees are welcome and so are first-timers. We will keep your number of times on the committee in mind as we select members.
Ready to volunteer? Fill out this form.
And as always, let us know if you have any questions.
About Emily Mroczek-Bayci
Emily Mroczek (Bayci) is a freelance children’s librarian in the Chicago suburbs. She served on the 2019 Newbery committee. You can reach her at email@example.com.
SLJ Blog Network