Image: Report in The Hans India daily, 7 Jan 2017
The annual ‘Muse India-Satish Verma Young Writer Award’ for 2016 goes to three writers, a poet and two novelists. Muse India is a reputed literary ejournal of 12 years standing with membership from over 50 countries. It is dedicated to Indian literature either originally in English or by way of translation from regional languages. Instituted in 2011, the Muse India Young Writer award was given away for 2011 and 2012. From 2015 with the sponsorship received from Satish Verma, an Ajmer based poet and social worker who runs a holistic therapies centre (Sewa Mandir), the award has been renamed. The award is aimed at recognising and rewarding outstanding literary talent among writers up to 35 years of age.
While the poetry prize goes to Goirick Brahmachari (New Delhi) for his work ‘For the Love of Pork’ (Les Editions du Zaporogue, Denmark); the fiction prize goes to two joint winners – Karan Mahajan (Delhi) for his novel ‘The Association of Small Bombs’ (Harper Collins); and Radhika Maira Tabrez (Rae Bareilly) for her novel ‘In the Light of Darkness’ (Readomania). The three winners will receive Rs 10,000 each.
The runners up are A Reshma (Trivandrum) for her poetry work ‘I Am’ (Writers Workshop); and Anandamayee Singh (student at University of California, Los Angeles) for her novel ‘As it happened in 1942’ (OM Books).
The judges for poetry were Ambika Ananth and Charanjeet Kaur, both editors of Muse India; while those for fiction were Prof S Mohanraj (EFLU), Prof Jayashree Mohanraj (EFLU) and BS Prakash (noted actor in English plays).
Here are the judges’ brief appraisals of the work of the winners.
“Goirick Brahmachari makes a compelling exploration of the social and political conflicts and identity issues; his focus on the North East, and the angst of coming to terms with different life patterns in a metro. The prose poems interspersed with the 'poetry' poems makes his book explorative both in form and content.”
“Karan Mahajan masterfully crafts a story around an act of terrorism and analyses the minds of terrorists, survivors and families of victims. The author delves deep into the psyche of each character and comes up with a gripping and well-rounded account of this act of terror. Having read this novel, no newspaper reporting of any act of terror will ever remain the same to its readers.”
“Radhika Tabrez dexterously weaves a good tale of many relationships, based on old-fashioned values, in a fictional island off the mainland of India. The grip on the tightly knit plot and narration gets the author the Fiction award. The novel claims full attention and involvement of its readers. A sterling effort from a debut novelist.”
The enthusiastic participation by a large number of budding writers is a pulse on the contemporary themes and trends in writing.
As for the year 2017 Muse India proposes to announce the awards for outstanding translations from regional literatures (no age bar). It plans to give the Young Writer Award and the Translation Award in alternate years. The formal announcement will be made in June.
NB: A shorter version of the above report has been carried in The Hans India daily, Jan 7, 2017. Here are the links:
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