Category Archives: Awards

Advancing Indian English with Regional Literature in the Background

Although it is mainly diasporic writers who have made Indian English writing global, and have translated works into many other languages, there are many others ignored by the media, the government and other establishments.

by Aju Mukhopadhyay

tagoreWhat is Indian English Literature?

Indian English Literature is the work of Indian-origin poets and writers writing in English, and living anywhere around the globe. They usually have similar mindsets, especially when writing about, or referring to India. Meenakshi Mukherjee has said that it is born out of Indian and English parentage–thus twice- born1. Another writer, Maria Tymoczko, thinks that it is born out of one culture and expressed in another2. Their opinions carry the idea of translation, but it may be said that there is exactly no question of translation as such, because when the creation is one’s own and not an independent version or expression of another’s creative production, albeit in a language not one’s own, the creative product is a trans-lingual/cultural endeavor. When an Indian writes his Indian experience in a foreign language it can be said to be a trans-cultural creative process. The history of this expanding literature has covered more than 200 years. Read more

Singapore: Desmond Kon’s Historic Poetry Win at 2015 National Indie Excellence Book Awards

Desmond Kon

Desmond Kon

It’s unprecedented. The first Singapore writer to bag this gold, Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé is also the first-ever author to place in a winning tie for Poetry at the National Indie Excellence Book Awards (NIEA). That there has never been a tie for the Poetry category in NIEA’s ten years of running makes for an interesting turn, but more compelling is how the tie names as its the citation two of Desmond’s poetry collections: I Didn’t Know Mani Was A Conceptualist (Math Paper Press) and Sanctus Sanctus Dirgha Sanctus (Red Wheelbarrow Books).

Based in Los Angeles, The National Indie Excellence Awards has been a strong advocate for independent publishing, a large sector of the publishing world, with most literary presses falling under its umbrella. The prestigious NIEA is open to all English language books in print. Entries come from small, medium, university, self and independent publishers. The judging panel comprises independent experts from all aspects of the indie book industry, including publishers, writers, editors, book designers and professional copywriters. Read more

Neel Mukherjee’s The Lives of Others wins the Encore Award for the Best Second Novel in the UK

the-lives-of-othersPenguin Random House India has announced that Neel Mukherjee’s The Lives of Others has won the Encore Award for the Best Second Novel in the UK.

Alex Clark, Chair of the Encore Judges said: ‘We were immensely impressed by the ambition and depth of Neel Mukherjee’s second novel, in which a suburban house in 1960s Calcutta comes to reflect the political and social convulsions of an entire society. Ranging from the mass hunger of the Second World War to independence and the emergence of the Maoist Naxalbari movement, Mukherjee chronicles these extraordinary years in Indian history through the piercingly observed story of one family. As we read further into the story of the Ghoshes – their lives thrown into crisis by an absconding activist son – we became increasingly convinced of the book’s immense qualities and its ability to inform and provoke at the same time as it entertains. We are excited to see what Mukherjee will produce next, and hope very much that the Encore Award will encourage him in his writing life.’.

On being presented with his Award, Neel Mukherjee said: ‘The Encore Award is the coolest and the most original literary prize in town. It is a burst of light in what is usually considered to be dark, damp, bleak territory — the dreaded second novel. I’m thrilled by my good fortune and, looking at the list of past winners, both humbled and deeply honoured.’

http://www.encoreaward.com/

India: Crossword Prize and most rejections: Anees Salim on his novel ‘The Blind Lady’s Descendants’

AneesSalimI started writing this book shortly after my first manuscript fetched me a few rejection mails. I had just landed my first job and I was living hand to mouth on the top floor of a rundown hotel. The floor had only three rooms besides mine but they were always uninhabited, so I practically had the whole floor to myself, complete with the luxury of a spacious terrace, a pretty view of the city and pin drop silence throughout the night. Read more

Singapore’s Desmond Kon Clinches Silver at 2015 Independent Publisher Book Awards

Desmond Kon

Desmond Kon

Fresh from his double win at this year’s Beverly Hills International Book Awards, Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé has been named a silver medalist at The 2015 Independent Publisher Book Awards (IPPY). This win, in the Multicultural Fiction category, is for his novel, Singular Acts of Endearment (Squircle Line Press & Grey Sparrow Press), which was launched at last year’s Singapore Writers Festival. Monona Wali’s My Blue Skin Lover (Blue Jay Ink) takes the gold, while Chantel Acevedo’s A Falling Star (Carolina Wren Press) walks away with the bronze. Read more

India: Raymond Crossword Book Award 2014 winners announced

The winners of 2014 Raymond Crossword Book Award have been announced and they are:

  • “The Blind Lady’s Descendants by Anees Salim” won the Raymond Crossword Book Award in the Indian Fiction category
  • This Divided Island: Stories from the Sri Lankan War by Samanth Subramanian won the award for Indian Non-Fiction
  • Children, Women, Men By Sundara Ramaswamy Translated by Lakshmi Holmstrom” won the Indian language Translation category
  • “Bankerupt by Ravi Subramanian” won the Popular Award
  • “Timmi in Tangles by Shals Mahajan Duckbill” won Kotak Junior Children writing award
AneesSalim

Anees Salim, winner in fiction category

The winners were honoured at a glittering award function at NCPA in Mumbai. Eminent jurist and a former mayor and Sheriff of Mumbai Nana Chudasama and Indian fashion designer, politician, and a social worker Shaina NC were the Chief Guest for the evening which also included a memorable performance by The Raghu Dixit Project.

With over 50,000 voting entries for the popular award, it was the highest number of votes ever received in the history of the Book Award, Crossword said in a statement. The entire judging process took more than 3 months.

Speaking on the occasion Mr Kinjal Shah (CEO – Crossword Bookstores) said, “This year we complete 13 years of the Book Award. These awards have always been an integral part of the brand & we are thrilled at the way it has grown over the years & supported Indian writing. We at crossword would like to thank the readers, authors, publishers, the jury, and all our sponsors for their support in the endeavour of rewarding the best of Indian Literature”

The 13th edition saw an outstanding response, from the various distinguished writers, publishers, critics and book-lovers who enjoyed the biggest celebration of Indian literature. Shortlisted authors Ravinder Singh, Durjoy Dutta, Ashwin Sanghi, S Hussain Zaidi, Rashmi Bansal, Anand Neelkhantan, Ravi Subramanian, Jerry Pinto, Amitabh Bagchi were present at event.

Write a Singapore neighbourhood story, win S$50,000 in grant

Singapore bank announces storytellers grant of a SGD 150,000 to be awarded to three winning storytellers

POSB, which calls itself Singapore’s neighbourhood bank, has announced the POSB Storytellers Grant, a SGD 150,000 initiative to fund the creation of works from aspiring storytellers that provide contemporary and refreshed perspectives on Singapore’s ‘new neighbourhoods’.

These storytellers could be anyone, from photographers to writers, artists to videographers, or simply just the man-on-the-street with a unique tale, said POSB Bank in a statement on 24 April. The grant of SGD150,000 will be awarded to three winners to produce a story about the new neighbourhood and share it with the community.

The initiative has been launched as part of the bank’s SG50 initiative NeighboursFirst.

The grant aims to uncover and share compelling stories that redefine the way Singaporeans see our neighbourhoods and communities today, the bank said in its statement. Read more

Yiyun Li wins Sunday Times short story prize for A Sheltered Woman

yiyun-liJudges praise the tale of a Chinese-American nanny for its ‘exquisite crafting, brilliant observations and modest but powerful voice’: The Guardian

The “mastery” of Yiyun Li’s tale about a Chinese-American nanny caring for a troubled mother and her newborn baby has made her the first woman to win the Sunday Times short story prize.

Li’s story, A Sheltered Woman, took the £30,000 award on Friday evening. First published in the New Yorker in March 2014, it tells of Auntie Mei, nanny to a new baby whose mother says she is suffering from postpartum depression.  Read more

Japan: Writer’s widow establishes literature award

“The culture of reading printed matter is in crisis, so I want to help produce more writers who deserve to be called artisans — just like young Fujimoto did,” said Tokiko Fujimoto, the 80-year-old widow of Naoki Prize-winning writer Giichi Fujimoto.

Tokiko has established a literature award named after her husband, who died about 2½ years ago. Entries for the award will be accepted from May. Read more

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