And The Winner Is …

Authors will tell you it’s not always wise to give away the ending of a story at the very beginning. But this year’s Troybery nominees and winners didn’t always follow conventional storytelling methods.

So without further ado — and as you can tell by the lead photo — OCDaniel, written by Wesley King, took home top honors.

The “coming-of-age story about a boy whose life revolves around hiding his obsessive compulsive disorder—until he gets a mysterious note that changes everything,” was the favorite of Troy middle schoolers who voted for it among 32 nominees.

Drumroll please, students patted their laps as a build-up to the announcement of the 2017 Troybery winner.
(photo by Rodney Curtis/School Life Troy)

“It’s wonderful to see the kids so fired up about reading and literature,” said Assistant Superintendent and the morning’s emcee Mark Dziatczak.

Pretending that he read every Troybery book cover to cover, Dziatczak then hilariously fell flat describing them. So he invited up representatives from the middle schools to actually describe the books.

Students applaud the Troybery winner. (photo by Rodney Curtis/School Life Troy)

Author Wesley King Skyped into the ceremonies — held at the district services building — as did other Troybery finalists. Author Marina Cohen, who wrote The Inn Between, was on hand signing books and lunching with the students. 

“We’ve never had an author at the Troybery ceremony before, so it’s all new and exciting with the other three authors Skypeing in,” said Boulan and Smith media specialist Christina Chatel.

Smith student Kanal Patel showed up on three screens.
(photo by Rodney Curtis/School Life Troy)


“I’m happy to be here because there are so many good authors,” said Boulan 6th grader Kashyap Bathina.

“I’m so excited. I’ve been looking forward to this for a really long time,” said Boulan 6th-grader Aditi Kashi. “I really love reading!”

“I love reading all the Troyberys. They’re my favorite books now. I’ve read 20 so far,” said Smith 6th-grader Amelia Rackers.

Baker 6th grader Harrison Otton got to ask a question of a Skypeing author about finding ideas and inspiration.
(photo by Rodney Curtis/School Life Troy)

“I really have enjoyed the Troybery’s I’ve read. You can tell that the librarians really looked for some good ones,” said Baker 7th-grader Claire Young.

“I think all the Troybery’s are super good,” said Larson 6th-grader Julia Dos Santos Weiss. “It’s pretty interesting to see all the authors because it’s not something you get the opportunity to do every day.”

And hey, if you’re looking for a conclusion to this story, why, please go back to …

The Beginning.

All four of the middle school principals were in attendance: Jo Kwasny from Boulan, Dr. Audra Melton from Baker, Joe Duda from Larson and Tim Fulcher from Smith. (photo by Rodney Curtis/School Life Troy)
Author Marina Cohen signs some books before the ceremony.
(photo by Rodney Curtis/School Life Troy)