POLK COUNTY -- Three people with Polk County connections have been named finalists for the Oregon Book Awards.
Donna Henderson, a Monmouth resident, has been nominated for the Stafford/Hall Award for Poetry. Her book, "The Eddy Fence," is published by Airlie Press.
Henderson is the author of two previous collections of poems. Her first, "Transparent Woman," was a finalist for the 1997 Oregon Book Award in Poetry. A practicing psychotherapist, Henderson also teaches creative writing at Willamette University.
Henry Hughes of Falls City is also vying for the poetry honor for his book "Moist Meridian."
Hughes, who's taught English at Western Oregon University for the past nine years and is a Falls City Councilor, won an Oregon Book Award in 2004 for "Men Holding Eggs."
Hughes' commentary on poetry regularly appears in the "Harvard Review."
Scott Carter of Salem was nominated for the Leslie Bradshaw Award for Young Adult Literature for his book "The Last Great Getaway of the Water Balloon Boys." The story centers on two teenagers from broken families.
Carter is an instructional technologist at Western Oregon University who moonlights as a writer. His "The Last Great Getaway" and forthcoming children's novel, "Wooden Bones," are published by Simon and Schuster.
The Oregon Book Awards are presented annually by Literary Arts, a Portland-based organization and lecture series that supports local writers and publishers.
Its awards program lauds work in genres of poetry, fiction, literary nonfiction, drama and young readers literature. The winners will be announced April 25 at the Gerding Theater at the Armory in Portland.
For more information, www.literary-arts.org/.