German Publishers Association Names Its 2019 German Book Prize Jurors

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Jurors have been named in the 2019 German Book Prize competition, which will culminate in a winner’s announcement on October 14, coinciding with the Frankfurter Buchmesse.

Heinrich Riethmüller, chair of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association, presides at the 2018 German Book Prize ceremony in Frankfurt. Image: Börsenverein

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

Submission Deadline: March 27
The German Book Prize Academy has named its jurors for the 2019 German Book Prize today (February 5), and submissions are open for this year’s award cycle.

Publishers should note that the deadline for submissions is March 27, and the information and form for submission can be found here.

Publishers may submit two German-language novels each from their current and/or upcoming lists, and they also can recommend up to five additional titles.

Applicants must be members of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association, the Swiss Booksellers and Publishers Association, or Austrian Book Trade Association. The books submitted must be published between October 1 of last year and September 17 of this year when the shortlist will be announced. The books themselves, reading copies, ebooks or galley proofs may be submitted until June 14.

The German Book Prize was awarded for the first time in 2005 and is seen as German-language fiction’s leading award. It’s given annually by the Foundation of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association. The winner receives a prize of €25,000 (US$28,549) and the other five shortlisted authors receive €2,500 (US$2,854) each.

Jurors for the 2019 German Book Prize
  • Petra Hartlieb, owner of the bookstore Hartliebs Bücher in Vienna, author, and member of the jury for the Österreichischer Buchpreis (Austrian Book Prize) 2017 and the Österreichischer Staatspreis für europäische Literatur (Austrian State Prize for European Literature) 2018
  • Hauke Hückstädt, director of the Literaturhaus Frankfurt since 2010, journalist, critic and lecturer
  • Björn Lauer, head of marketing and acquisitions for the Hugendubel bookstore in Frankfurt am Main
  • Jörg Magenau, independent author and literary critic for Süddeutsche Zeitung, the broadcaster rbb and the culture radio program Deutschlandfunk Kultur, amongst others. Most recent book: Bestseller (Hoffmann & Campe)
  • Alf Mentzer, editor at Hessischer Rundfunk (Hessian Broadcasting Corporation), head of the literary department of hr2-kultur since 2006, department head of the hr2 day program since 2014
  • Daniela Strigl, literary scholar and critic, member of the jury for the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize, German Book Prize 2009 and Leipzig Book Fair Prize (from 2013 to 2015), among others
  • Margarete von Schwarzkopf, journalist, author and moderator; she has worked for the Catholic News Agency, Die Welt and the broadcaster Norddeutscher Rundfunk, among others

To be sure the greatest level of independence for the award, the German Book Prize Academy selects a new jury every year. It is possible to be a member of the jury more than once.

The novel of the year will be selected through a multiple-stage process.

  • First, the jury will review all of the novels submitted by the publishers and compile a longlist of 20 titles, which will be announced on August 20.
  • From this list, the jurors will then select six titles for the shortlist, which will be published on September 17.
  • These six authors will only find out which of them has won the German Book Prize on the evening of the award ceremony in Frankfurt on October 14, to coincide with the start of the Frankfurter Buchmesse.

As Publishing Perspectives readers will recall, Inger-Maria Mahlke won the German Book Prize 2018 for her novel Archipel (Archipelago).

The German Book Prize receives funding from the Deutsche Bank Foundation, and additional partners include the Frankfurter Buchmesse and the city of Frankfurt am Main. The television network Deutsche Welle supports the German Book Prize in its media activities, both in country and internationally.

You can follow news of this year’s German Book Prize at hashtag #dbt19.

You can see Mahlke’s acceptance speech for the 2018 award at the Frankfurt Römer in the video below.


More from Publishing Perspectives on the German Book Prize is here, and on publishing and book awards in general is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He is also co-owner and editor with Jane Friedman of The Hot Sheet, the newsletter for trade and indie authors. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook, at London's The Bookseller. Anderson has also worked with CNN International, CNN.com, CNN USA, the Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and other media.

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