For The Media

Congratulations to this year's winners! Our judges worked hard to select from the abundance of great submissions. Our members are so talented! A special thanks to the members who volunteered their time to judge. ASJA thanks you!

ASJA Writing Awards Co-chairs, Salley Shannon and Janine Latus

Salley ShannonJanine Latus

ASJA 2018 Writing Awards winners

ARTICLES -- Categories open to all freelance writers:

The Arlene Award for an Article that Makes a Difference: When Hurricane Warnings Are Lost in Translation” by Terena Bell, writing in The Atlantic.  

The Donald Robinson Memorial Award for Investigative Journalism: “The Watson Files” by Laura Heaton, published in  

ARTICLES -- Categories Open Only to ASJA Members:

Blog Post/Personal: “A Better Excuse than ‘The Dog Ate My Homework,’” by Martin Hirsch.

Business/Technology/Science: "The Blood of the Crab" by Caren Chesler, writing in Popular Mechanics.  

Honorable Mention: "The Uncertain Future of Puffin for Dinner" by Cheryl Katz, published in Hakai Magazine.

Excellence in Reporting: “Journey to Gunland" by Melinda Wenner Moyer, writing in Scientific American.  

Honorable Mention: "Protecting Negative Heritage in Rwanda" by JoAnn Greco, published in The Pennslyvania Gazette.

First Person Experience Article or Essay: “Drinking Chai to Savannah: Reflections on Identity, Inclusion and Power in the South” by Anjali Enjeti, writing in Longreads.  ​

Health and Fitness:   "When drinkers suffer liver disease, should getting a transplant be so hard?" by Alexandra Fleming, published in The Washington Post.

Honorable Mention: "How Anti-Choice Lawmakers Are Getting Around Roe v. Wade" by Sarika Chawla, published in Vice Tonic

How-to Article:  "College Advice I Wish I’d Taken" by Susan Shapiro, writing in The New York Times.

Honorable Mention: "The Special Bond of Older Dogs and Older Owners: Money-saving 'Seniors for Seniors' pet adoption programs are gaining popularity" by Jen Reeder, published in PBS’s Next

June Roth Award for a Medical Article: "Deserted” by Melinda Wenner Moyer, published in Women’s Health.  

Honorable Mention: “After the ICU” by Kenneth Miller, writing in Prevention.  

Lifestyle:  "A Japanese Baseball Tour: The Healing Power of Baseball in Japan" by Todd Pitock, published in Travel & Leisure Magazine.  

Honorable Mention: "Quest for Gray Ghost: Tracking the Snow Leopard in Ladakh" by Jill Robinson, writing in The San Francisco Chronicle.

Opinion/Op-Ed: “The Wealthy Are Poised for the End of the World” by Lara Kristen Herndon, writing in   

Honorable Mention: “A Kindness While Dying” by John Moir, published in Catamaran Literary Reader.  

Profiles:  "In Pursuit of Justice” by Julia M. Klein, writing in The Pennsylvania Gazette.

Honorable Mention: “Homeland Insecurity” by Jack El-Hai, published in the Minnesota Alumni Magazine.

Trade: "When the Target of Bias is the Doctor" by Robin Warshaw, writing in AAMCNews.  


Biography/History:  Through a Glass, Darkly: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and the Quest to Solve the Greatest Mystery of All by Stefan Bechtel and Laurence Roy Stains.  

Children/Young Adult Nonfiction:  50 Wacky Things Animals Do by Tricia Martineau Wagner.   

Honorable Mention:  The Encyclopedia of Whales, Dolphins and Porpoises by Erich Hoyt.  Published by Firefly Press (US, Canada, UK.)  

General Nonfiction:  Little Soldiers: An American Boy, A Chinese School and the Global Race to Achieve by Lenora Chu. Published by HarperCollins Books, NYC.  
Honorable Mention: The Book of Noticing: Collections and Connections on the Trail by Katherine Hauswirth.  Published by Homebound Publications, Pawcatuck, CT.  

Memoirs/ Biography/ Autobiography:  At the Broken Places: A Mother and Trans Son Pick Up the Pieces by Mary Collins. Published by Beacon Press.  

Service/self-help:  Thriftstyle: the Ultimate Bargain Shopper’s Guide to Smart Fashion by Allison Engel, Reise Moore and Margaret Engel. Published by Imagine Books. 


ASJA is awarding its prestigious Conscience in Media Award to the Maltese journalist, writer, and anti-corruption activist Daphne Caruana Galizia. 

Ms. Caruana Galizia, 53, was murdered in her native Malta, a Mediterranean island nation, on October 16, 2017 after numerous threats and attacks to her and her family. She had been writing since 1987 and was the first person in Malta to have a signed opinion column. Since 2008 she published her self-funded personal blog, Running Commentary, and at the time of her death she was a regular columnist with the Malta Independent.

The Conscience in Media award calls attention to the increasingly dangerous profession of investigative journalism. More than 700 journalists have been killed over the past decade, according to Reporters without Borders (RSF). Six murders occurred in 2017; in 2018 a Slovak reporter was shot to death while investigating corruption. For more information, click here

Awards Reception 

All are welcome to the ASJA Awards Reception on Friday, May 18, 2018, at the Sheraton New York Hotel Times Square. Tickets for the reception are available here. The presentation program will be emceed by Joanne Lipman, author of That's What She Said: What Men Need to Know About Working Together. Until December 31, 2017, she was Chief Content Officer of publishing company Gannett, and Editor-in-Chief of USA TODAY and the USA TODAY NETWORK. 

  • A blank piece of paper is God's way of telling us how hard it is to be God.
    – Sidney Sheldon
  • A critic is a man who knows the way but can't drive the car.
    – Kenneth Tynan
  • A good many young writers make the mistake of enclosing a stamped, self–addressed envelope, big enough for the manuscript to come back in. This is too much of a temptation to the editor.
    – Ring Lardner
  • A young musician plays scales in his room and only bores his family. A beginning writer, on the other hand, sometimes has the misfortune of getting into print.
    – Marguerite Yourcenar
  • All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary – it's just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences.
    – Somerset Maugham
  • Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.
    – Christopher Hampton
  • Being a writer is like having homework every night for the rest of your life.
    – Lawrence Kasdan
  • Copy from one, it's plagiarism; copy from two, it's research.
    –Wilson Mizner
  • Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them.
    – Flannery O'Connor
  • I just wrote a book, but don't go out and buy it yet, because I don't think it's finished yet.
    – Lawrence Welk
  • I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
    – Douglas Adams
  • I'm writing a book. I've got the page numbers done.
    – Stephen Wright
  • It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn't give it up because by that time I was too famous.
    – Robert Benchley
  • It's a damn poor mind that can only think of one way to spell a word.
    – Andrew Jackson
  • Most writers can write books faster than publishers can write checks.
    – Richard Curtis
  • No fathers or mothers think their own children ugly; and this self–deceit is yet stronger with respect to the offspring of the mind.
    – Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
  • There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.
    –Somerset Maugham
  • Writing a novel is like paddling from Boston to London in a bathtub. Sometimes the damn tub sinks. It's a wonder that most of them don't.
    – Stephen King
  • Writing a novel is like spelunking. You kind of create the right path for yourself. But, boy, are there so many points at which you think, absolutely, I'm going down the wrong hole here.
    – Chang–rae Lee
  • Your manuscript is both good and original, but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.
    –Samuel Johnson