Storylines Children’s Literature Charitable Trust of New Zealand | Te Whare Waituhi Tamariki o Aotearoa

Storylines Awards

Storylines, in line with its  advocacy for the development of New Zealand children’s literature, offers 11 awards to writers, illustrators, publishers and those working in the field of children’s literature and literacy.

These include:

New Awards announced June 2022

Storylines is delighted to announce the addition of new awards for unpublished writers in the Storylines Tessa Duder Award, the Storylines Te Kahurangi Kāterina Te Heikōkō Mataira Award, and the Storylines Joy Cowley Award, alongside the current $500 award for an unpublished writer in the Storylines Tom Fitzgibbon Award.  Should a published writer win the award The Friends of Storylines Nga Pou o te Waituhi Tamariki o Aotearoa is offering a $500 prize (where merited) to a shortlisted unpublished writer in each of these categories. If the winner of any of these awards is unpublished, the $500 Storylines prize will go to an unpublished writer on the shortlist.

In the event of there being two or more unpublished writers on the shortlist, the judging panel shall decide the recipient.


These awards are nationally and internationally recognised, acknowledging achievement and service and providing opportunities for established, emerging and new talent.

Several Storylines awards are presented at the annual Storylines Margaret Mahy National Awards Day, usually in early April each year. The recipient of the Storylines Margaret Mahy Medal is announced in advance, and presents a lecture on a topic of their choice.

The Storylines Betty Gilderdale Award recipient delivers the Storylines Spring Lecture at an award presentation usually held in November.

All Storylines awards are chosen by appointed panels of acknowledged experts in children’s literature, among them authors, illustrators, teachers, children’s librarians, academics and whanau.

All awards where a manuscript or artwork (for the Gavin Bishop Award) is submitted, are judged ‘blind’ – that is, the identities of all authors or illustrators are unknown to members ofthe judging panels.  

Storylines Award Deadlines

Deadlines, entry forms and guidelines for Storylines’ achievement and manuscript awards are detailed on the pages for each award:

2020 Storylines Award presentations

All our virtual award presentations made online in 2020 are available for you to watch or re-watch on our YouTube or Vimeo channels. Use the links below to see:

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