BRUNSWICK — The Maine Humanities Council has announced that Maine author Monica Wood has been awarded their 2019 Constance H. Carlson Public Humanities Prize, honoring her commitment to Maine communities, her support of Maine libraries, and all that she does to support the literary and cultural life of the state.

A novelist, memoirist and playwright, Wood’s books include “The One-in-a-Million Boy,” “When We Were the Kennedys” and “Any Bitter Thing.” Her novel “Ernie’s Ark,” set in the fictional paper-mill town of Abbot Falls, has been selected by several Maine towns as their One Book, One Community read. She later adapted “Ernie’s Ark” into her first play, “Papermaker,” which saw a bestselling run at Portland Stage in 2015.

In 2017 she was the recommending author for Read ME, a statewide summer reading program offered in partnership by the Maine Humanities Council and Maine State Library. Her second play, “The Half-Light,” is currently running at Portland Stage.

“The Carlson Prize is named for the first-ever woman president of a University of Maine campus and is given in recognition and appreciation of individuals or organizations who have made extraordinary contributions to the state through the humanities,” said Hayden Anderson, executive director of the Maine Humanities Council. “The impact of Monica’s work is felt all across the state and is a spectacular example of the humanities playing out in our everyday lives.”

Wood is the eighth person to receive the Constance H. Carlson Prize since its creation in 1998. Previous honorees include Gary Lawless, Donald Soctomah, Joseph Conforti, Neil Rolde, Northeast Historic Film, Billie Gammon and Tabitha King.

Wood’s contributions to the state will be honored during a prize luncheon scheduled for noon Tuesday, May 7, at Bowdoin College. Tickets are available beginning Tuesday, April 2, at

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