Hon. Hilary M. Weston and the Writers’ Trust Announce Finalists for $60,000 Literary Award
Literary community invited to puzzle out shortlist
Toronto – September 16, 2015 – The Writers’ Trust of Canada announced today the five finalists for this year’s Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction, the richest annual literary award for a book of nonfiction published in Canada. In a new twist, publishers and authors were invited to learn of their inclusion on the list by piecing together a jigsaw puzzle.
This year’s finalists are:
Eliott Behar for Tell It to the World: International Justice and the Secret Campaign to Hide Mass Murder in Kosovo (Dundurn Press)
Douglas Coupland for Kitten Clone: Inside Alcatel-Lucent (Random House Canada)
Dean Jobb for Empire of Deception: From Chicago to Nova Scotia – The Incredible Story of a Master Swindler Who Seduced a City and Captivated a Nation (Harper Avenue)
Lynette Loeppky for Cease: A Memoir of Love, Loss and Desire (Oolichan Books)
Rosemary Sullivan for Stalin’s Daughter: The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva (HarperCollins Canada)
Each finalist will receive $5,000. The prize winner will receive a total of $60,000.
Finalists were selected by a three-member jury composed of author and journalist Stevie Cameron, novelist and nonfiction writer Will Ferguson, and writer and broadcaster JJ Lee, who was a finalist for this prize in 2012. In total, 97 titles were submitted by 51 publishers for the 2015 prize.
“The work of a nonfiction writer is essential to our understanding of our world, our community, and ourselves,” said the Hon. Hilary M. Weston. “This prize is a celebration of that work, and an opportunity to shine a spotlight on the crucial endeavours – and compelling tales – of Canada’s true-storytellers-in-chief.”
The nominated works are available today for download on iBooks for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac at www.itunes.com/WestonPrize.
Support for the Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize is provided by media partner CBC Books. Additional support is provided by Indigo Chapters.
A jigsaw puzzle revealing the nominated works can be viewed atwriterstrust.com/puzzle.
Further event information and downloadable images are available on our prize page.
About The Hon. Hilary M. Weston, CM, OOnt
The Hon. Hilary M. Weston served as the 26th lieutenant-governor of Ontario from 1997 to 2002. As the Queen’s representative in Ontario, Mrs. Weston was responsible for the Crown’s constitutional and representational roles in the province. Since leaving public office, Mrs. Weston has continued to pursue her diverse interests. She led Renaissance ROM, the largest fundraising campaign in Canadian cultural history, transforming the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. She is a trustee of St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle and serves on the board of the Art Gallery of Ontario. Mrs. Weston is also a corporate director of Wittington Investments and Selfridges Group Ltd. She has also served as deputy chair of the board of Holt Renfrew, promoting Canadian designers in the retailing business.
Mrs. Weston founded the Ireland Fund of Canada and remains a patron of this non-denominational organization promoting peace in Ireland. Her interests in homes and gardens resulted in the publication of In a Canadian Garden (1989) and At Home in Canada (1995). She served as first chancellor of the Order of Ontario, was appointed a member of the Order of Canada in 2003, and is the recipient of six honorary degrees.
About the Prize
The prize is awarded for literary excellence in the category of nonfiction, which includes, among other forms, personal or journalistic essays, history, biography, memoirs, commentary, and criticism, both social and political. Finalist works will, in the opinion of the jury, demonstrate a distinctive voice, as well as a persuasive and compelling command of tone, narrative, style, and technique. This award succeeds the Writers’ Trust Nonfiction Prize, which was established in 1997.
About the Writers’ Trust
The Writers’ Trust of Canada is a charitable organization that seeks to advance, nurture, and celebrate Canadian writers and writing through a portfolio of programs, including literary awards, financial grants, scholarships, and a writers’ retreat. Writers’ Trust programming is designed to champion excellence in Canadian writing, to improve the status of writers, and to create connections between writers and readers. Canada’s writers receive more financial support from the Writers’ Trust than from any other non-governmental organization or foundation in the country.
For more information, visit the press release on the Writer’s Trust of Canada website.
>>From the Canadian Children’s Book Centre
Finalists Announced for the 2015 Canadian Children’s Book Centre Awards
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Toronto (September 10, 2015) – The Canadian Children’s Book Centre (CCBC) is excited to announce the finalists for its eight major children’s book awards:
- TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award ($30,000)
- Prix TD de littérature canadienne pour l’enfance et la jeunesse ($30,000)
- Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award ($20,000)
- Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction ($10,000)
- Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People ($5,000)
- John Spray Mystery Award ($5,000)
- Monica Hughes Award for Science Fiction and Fantasy ($5,000)
- Amy Mathers Teen Book Award ($5,000)
The winners will be announced at the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Awards and Prix TD de littérature canadienne pour l’enfance et la jeunesse – two invitation-only gala events in Toronto on November 18 and Montreal on November 10. Overall, $135,000 in prize monies will be awarded.
TD is once again partnering with CBC Books to present the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Fan Choice Award. Young people across Canada are encouraged to vote for their favourite book online at CBCBooks.ca from October 1 to 30, 2015. This year, in partnership with Radio-Canada, the Fan Choice Award will also be presented to a French-language title — young readers can vote for their favourite book from September 28 to October 24, 2015 at ici.radio-canada.ca/coinlecture. Two lucky voters will be selected to attend the Montreal and Toronto galas to meet their favourite author/illustrator and present the award.
The nominated books exemplify some of the very best work by Canadian authors and illustrators. The Canadian Children’s Book Centre is proud to share these titles and the juries’ notes with you.
For more information, visit the press release on the Canadian Children Book’s Centre website.
Writers’ Trust Announces One-Time Program to Endorse Emerging Writers
“Five x Five” delivers high-profile commendations and $25,000 to writers on the rise
September 8, 2015 – Toronto – The Writers’ Trust of Canada is delighted to announce “Five x Five,” a one-time program made possible by the RBC Emerging Artists Project that will distribute a total of $25,000 to Canadian writers in the developing stages of their careers. Five celebrated writers from across Canada, all past Writers’ Trust award honourees, have each selected one emerging writer of fiction or poetry who they feel has displayed the potential to enter Canada’s literary canon. The nominating writers are: Ken Babstock, Joseph Boyden, Michael Crummey, Esi Edugyan, andMadeleine Thien. The five writers they have selected will each receive $5,000.
About the recipients
Linda Besner (Montreal), selected by Ken Babstock(Toronto)
Linda Besner is the author of The Id Kid, published in 2011 by Véhicule Press and named as one of theNational Post’s Best Poetry Books of the Year. Her poetry has appeared in The Walrus, Maisonneuve, andThe Malahat Review, among other journals, and been anthologized in Best Canadian Poetry 2012.
Megan Gail Coles (St. John’s), selected by Michael Crummey (St. John’s)
Megan Gail Coles is a playwright and fiction writer whose debut story collection, Eating Habits of the Chronically Lonesome (Killick Press), won the 2014 BMO Winterset Award and the Margaret and John Savage First Book Award. She is co-founder and co-artistic director of Poverty Cove Theatre Company in St. John’s.
Ghalib Islam (Toronto), selected by Madeleine Thien(Montreal)
Ghalib Islam has a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of Toronto, where he was mentored by Margaret Atwood. His first novel, Fire in the Unnameable Country (Hamish Hamilton Canada), was met with critical acclaim in 2014 and hailed as “one of the buzziest novels of the season.”
Eliza Robertson (Norwich, UK), selected by Joseph Boyden (New Orleans/James Bay, ON)
Eliza Robertson’s stories have been shortlisted for the Journey Prize and CBC Short Story Prize. In 2013, her story “We Walked On Water” co-won the Commonwealth Short Story Prize. Her first collection,Wallflowers, was published in 2014 with Hamish Hamilton Canada and Bloomsbury UK. She was born in Vancouver, grew up on Vancouver Island, and now lives in England.
Melanie Siebert (Victoria), selected by Esi Edugyan(Victoria)
Melanie Siebert is a poet whose first book, Deepwater Vee (McClelland & Stewart), was shortlisted for a 2010 Governor General’s Literary Award. She was selected by the Writers’ Trust to be a writer-in-residence at Berton House Writers’ Retreat in 2013. Siebert lives in Victoria where she is an instructor at the University of Victoria.
“Five x Five” was made possible by the RBC Emerging Artists Project and an initiative in early 2015 to award $25,000 in funding to one of six arts organizations in an online poll. The Writers’ Trust of Canada generated the most support with 35.1% of the votes cast.
“We couldn’t have secured this funding without the support of the literary community, which rallied around the cause,” said Mary Osborne, executive director of the Writers’ Trust of Canada. “Thanks to that community support, five writers in the early stages of their careers will receive some cash in their pocket and a pat on the back: a valuable endorsement from a celebrated author that says, ‘You are one to watch. Please write more.’”
“What makes this one-time program special is that the writers who receive this additional support have obviously captured the interest of some of the Writers’ Trust’s most accomplished and recognized alumni,” said Valerie Chort, vice president, corporate citizenship, RBC. “The arts are the heart and soul of our communities and cultures, and that’s why we’re proud to support the Writers’ Trust through the RBC Emerging Artists Project.”
The RBC Emerging Artists Project helps artists to bridge the gap from emerging to established, and supports organizations that provide the best opportunity to advance their career trajectory.
Visit the “Five x Five” program page to download images of the recipients and nominators, read citations, and find out more information.
About the Five x Five program
Five celebrated writers from across Canada were each asked to select one emerging writer to receive this recognition and financial reward. To be eligible for nomination, writers must have published a maximum of one literary book (fiction or poetry) with a professional publishing house, or had their work appear in a literary magazine or anthology, and be in the developing stages of their career. No age restriction applied.
About the Writers’ Trust
The Writers’ Trust of Canada is a charitable organization that seeks to advance, nurture, and celebrate Canadian writers and writing through a portfolio of programs that includes literary awards, financial grants, scholarships, and a writers’ retreat. Writers’ Trust programming is designed to champion excellence in Canadian writing, to improve the status of writers, and to create connections between writers and readers. Canada’s writers receive more financial support from the Writers’ Trust than from any other non-governmental organization or foundation in the country.
More more information, view the press release at the Writer’s Trust of Canada website.
>>From the League of Canadian Poets
Toronto, June 2, 2015: The League of Canadian Poets revealed the winners of the 2015 Raymond Souster Award, the Pat Lowther and Gerald Lampert Memorial Awards, and the Sheri-D Wilson Golden Beret Award in Winnipeg on Saturday, May 30, at a joint conference presented by the LCP and the Writers Union of Canada. The celebration marked the 49th annual LCP Poetry Conference and Festival.
Winners of the 2015 League of Canadian Poets Prizes
2015 RAYMOND SOUSTER AWARD: Washita by Patrick Lane (Harbour Publishing)
The Raymond Souster Award is given for a book of poetry by a League of Canadian Poets member published in the preceding year. The award honours the late Raymond Souster, an early founder of the League of Canadian Poets. The award carries a $1,000 prize and is sponsored by the League of Canadian Poets. 2015 Jury: Micheline Maylor, Susan McMaster, D.C. Reid.
2015 PAT LOWTHER AWARD: M x T by Sina Queyras (Coach House Books)
The Pat Lowther Memorial Award is given for a book of poetry by a Canadian woman published in the preceding year, in memory of the late Pat Lowther, whose career was cut short by her untimely death in 1975. The award carries a $1,000 prize is sponsored by the League of Canadian Poets. 2015 Jury: Di Brandt, Candice James, Concetta Principe.
2015 GERALD LAMPERT MEMORIAL AWARD: For Your Safety Please Hold On by Kayla Czaga (Nightwood Editions)
The Gerald Lampert Memorial Award is given in the memory of Gerald Lampert, an arts administrator who organized authors’ tours and took a particular interest in the work of new writers. The award recognizes the best first book of poetry published by a Canadian in the preceding year. The award carries a $1,000 prize and is sponsored by the League of Canadian Poets. 2015 Jury: Sonja Greckol, Charles Mountford, David Seymour.
2015 SHERI-D WILSON GOLDEN BERET AWARD: Penn Kemp
This Sheri-D Wilson Golden Beret Award was created by Sheri-D Wilson-a pioneer of spoken word poetry in Canada-to honour a Canadian spoken word artist who has made a substantial contribution to the development of spoken word, through the originality and excellence of his or her own writing/performance works, and through involvement in-and contributions to-the expansion of the spoken word community. The award carries a $1,000 prize and is sponsored by the League of Canadian Poets and Calgary Spoken Word Society. 2015 Jury: bill bissett, Moe Clark and Sheri-D Wilson.