Literary Awards Honour Bermuda’s Top Authors

December 27, 2018

Today the Minister of Labour, Community Affairs and Sports Lovitta Foggo announced the winners of the 2018 Bermuda Literary Awards.

“Literary artistry demands talent, hard work, research, time, and dedication; and the writing of a novel, or a book of poetry, stems from a desire to tell a story about the world we inhabit, in a way that holds meaning for its inhabitants,” said Minister Foggo.

“As the Minister responsible for Culture, I am delighted to have a mechanism through which to reward excellence in this area; and I am therefore very pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 Bermuda Literary Awards.”

The Bermuda Literary Awards began in 1999 to honour literary achievement by Bermuda’s writers. The competition runs once every five to six years, and books are eligible if they have been published subsequent to the previous award cycle.

Some of the winners: Florenz Webbe Maxwell, Jonathan Smith, Colin Duerden, and Paul Maddern

Bermuda Literary Awards December 2018 (1)

This year the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs added a seventh category of competition – the Prize for Cultural Merit. This new prize is offered for books or scripts that are notable for contributing to the preservation of Bermuda’s culture, heritage, folklife or history.

Another addition to this year’s competition stems from a recognition of the importance of film as storytelling tool in our society. As a result, the ‘Prize for Drama’ is now the ‘Prize for Drama and Screenwriting’; and so in addition to theatre and radio scripts, eligibility for this category now includes screenplays that have been made into feature-length films.

The winning entries are as follows:

  • In the category of Non-Fiction: Island Flames by Mr. Jonathan D. Smith;
  • In the Drama and Screenwriting category: Me and Jezebel by filmmaker Ms. Lucinda Spurling;
  • In the Children and Young Adult Fiction category: Girlcott by Mrs. Florenz Webbe Maxwell;
  • The winner of the Brian Burland Prize for Fiction is Dr. F. Colin Duerden for his novel about the antics of Bermudian boyhood, Fried White Grunts;
  • The winner of the Cecille N. Musson Prize for Poetry: Pilgrimage by Dr. Paul Maddern;
  • The winner of the inaugural prize for Cultural Merit is Dr. Clarence V.H. Maxwell for Pembroke, part of “Bermuda’s Architectural Heritage Series”, published by the Bermuda National Trust;
  • And finally, the Founder’s Award, which is offered for books or scripts published prior to the establishment of the Bermuda Literary Awards in 1999, has been awarded posthumously to Cyril Outerbridge Packwood for his invaluable text exploring slavery in Bermuda, Chained on the Rock, second edition published by the National Museum of Bermuda

Bermuda Literary Awards December 2018 (2)

Each winner is given a prize of $2,000 and will be honoured in a special ceremony in February. Every one of the books under consideration has already gone through an editing process, and been made available to the general public.

Minister Foggo added: “I would like to particularly thank the judges for this year’s competition: Mrs. Meredith Ebbin, Ms. Ellen Hollis, Mr. Michael Jones, Mr. Alan C. Smith, and Dr. Sajni Tolaram. Each of these judges spent a tremendous amount of time reading the entries and analyzing the strengths of the writing according to rubrics provided by the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs.”

In making these selections, the judges acknowledged that, since the quality of several submissions was quite high, they wanted to offer an Honorable Mention in each category as follows: Bermuda Maps by Mr. Jonathan Land Evans for Non-Fiction; Mr. Dale Butler for his plays Sinnerman and Second Last Supper; The Great Wave of Tamarind by Ms Nadia Aguiar in Young Adult Fiction; What We Hold In Our Hands by Ms Kim Aubrey in Fiction; Ms Wendy Fulton Steginsky’s Let This Be Enough in Poetry; and Hands On! The Art of Traditional Crafts and Play in Bermuda by Mrs. Shirley Pearman, MBE in Cultural Merit.

“I would like to once again congratulate the winners and those receiving honourable mentions in the 2018 Bermuda Literary Awards,” said Minister Foggo. “I hope that this will encourage other Bermudian writers to strive for excellence in the literary arts.”

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  1. Congrats says:

    Congrats to all.