But in an odd twist, Connolly, nominated for his poetry collection Revolver (which is also up for the Griffin Poetry Prize), is included in the list of nominees for the Trillium Book Award and is competing against five novels; he isn't listed with Sol ( Jeremiah, Ohio), Jeremy Dodds ( Crabwise to the Hounds; Coach House, and also up for the Griffin), and Joanne Page ( Watermarks; Pedlar Press) in the list for the Trillium Book Award for Poetry.
According to a spokesperson for the awards, Connolly was ineligible for the $10,000 poetry prize because Revolver is his fourth collection and the competition, designed to focus on emerging poets, is only open to first, second and third collections.
Luckily for Connolly, then, that the big prize -- the $20,000 Trillium Book Award -- is open to all genres.
The other finalists for this year's award are Nino Ricci ( The Origin of Species; Doubleday Canada), Pasha Malla ( The Withdrawal Method), Ibi Kaslik ( The Angel Riots; Penguin Canada), Helen Humphreys ( Coventry; HarperCollins) and Charles Wikins ( In the Land of Long Fingernails; Penguin Canada)
The Trillium Book Awards are given out annually by the Ontario Ministry of Culture. It's open to Ontario writers who have lived in the province for at least three years. There are also prizes for French-language works.
The winners will be announced June 16.
UPDATE: Sarah MacLachlan, president of Anansi, is all aglow from her company's recent successes. "What can I say, make hay while the sun shines - life is good at our publishing house," she said in an e-mail.
"2009 is proving to be a very good year for Anansi and Groundwood Books," she continued. "We have a number of books on different bestsellers lists across the country: The Cello Suites by Eric Siblin, McMafia by Misha Glenny, The Outlander by Gil Adamson and of course the surprise hit of last year continues to sell strongly in 2009, Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth by Margaret Atwood.
"From Groundwood, Skim by Mariko and Gillian Tamaki has just been awarded the Doug Wright award for Best Graphic Novel of the Year.
"And now we have our poetry making a big splash. Kevin Connolly has been nominated for both the Griffin Prize and the Trillium for his book, Revolver; Al Moritz has also been nominated for the Griffin for his book The Sentinel and Adam Sol has found himself for the second time nominated for the Trillium poetry prize for his second book, Jeremiah, Ohio. And Elise Partridge's collection Chameleon Hours has been nominated for the Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry - announced on June 6.
"And last but not least Pasha Malla's short story collection, The Withdrawal Method (winner of the Denuta Gleed Award for Best First English Language Collection of Short Fiction), has also been nominated for the Trillium.