The winner of the First Novel Award will be announced on Tuesday, May 22, at a gala in Toronto hosted by the CBC's Shelagh Rogers with guest speaker and Giller Prize–winner Michael Redhill
The winner of the Youth Author short-fiction category will also be recognized that evening
SEATTLE, April 28, 2018 /CNW/ - Amazon Canada and The Walrus today announced the nominees for the 42nd annual First Novel Award (www.amazon.ca/firstnovelaward), which celebrates the remarkable achievements of first-time Canadian novelists. This year's finalists will each receive over $4,000 in cash and prizes, and the winner will receive additional prizes totalling over $40,000. The winner will be announced at the annual Amazon Canada First Novel Award ceremony, which will be held on Tuesday, May 22, at the Toronto Reference Library.
New this year is the addition of the Youth Author Award category. Authors between the ages of thirteen and seventeen were invited to submit a short story under 3,000 words. The winner, also to be announced the week of May 22, has been chosen by our esteemed panel of judges. The prize for the winning short story is $5,000 and a mentorship lunch with editors of The Walrus. Due to the overwhelming quality of excellent submissions, Amazon will be extending invitations to attend the ceremony to three Youth Author Honourees.
Also new this year: rather than only one judge reading all the submissions, determining the shortlist, and working with two other judges to decide the winner, all three judges will read every submission. This year's panel is composed of Irene Gammel, professor, author, editor, and Ryerson University's Canada Research Chair in modern literature and culture; Dimitri Nasrallah, winner of the Quebec Writers' Foundation's Hugh MacLennan and First Book Prizes and author of three novels, most recently The Bleeds (2018); and literary journalist, lecturer, and critic Donna Bailey Nurse, editor of Revival: An Anthology of Black Canadian Writing and author of the acclaimed series What's a Black Critic To Do?
The finalists for the 2018 Amazon Canada First Novel Award, listed alphabetically by each author's last name, are:
- The Boat People, Sharon Bala (McClelland & Stewart)
- The Bone Mother, David Demchuk (ChiZine Publications)
- American War, Omar El Akkad (McClelland & Stewart)
- The Water Beetles, Michael Kaan (Goose Lane Editions)
- The Black Peacock, Rachel Manley (Cormorant Books)
- Dazzle Patterns, Alison Watt (Freehand Books)
"Every year, the First Novel Award nominees raise the bar with their outstanding debut novels," said Alexandre Gagnon, vice-president of Amazon Canada and Amazon Mexico. "Not only do we have six strong nominations from authors across Canada, but with the launch of the Youth Author Award, we are expanding our support
to the next generation of Canadian authors. By giving them a platform to share their creativity, words, and thoughts, we hope this inspires young authors to one day aspire to be in the same position as our nominees: established Canadian authors. I hope that Canadians continue to support homegrown talent, no matter their age."
Established in 1976, the First Novel Award program has launched and heralded the careers of some of Canada's most beloved novelists. Previous winners include Michael Ondaatje (1976), Joan Barfoot (1978), Joy Kogawa (1981), W.P. Kinsella (1982), Nino Ricci (1990), Rohinton Mistry (1991), Shyam Selvadurai (1994), Anne Michaels (1996), Margaret Gibson (1997), André Alexis (1998), Alan R. Wilson and David Macfarlane (co-winners, 1999), Eva Stachniak (2000), Michael Redhill (2001), Mary Lawson (2002), Michel Basilières (2003), Colin McAdam (2004), Joseph Boyden (2005), Madeleine Thien (2006), Gil Adamson (2007), Joan Thomas (2008), Jessica Grant (2009), Eleanor Catton (2010), David Bezmozgis (2011), Anakana Schofield (2012), and Wayne Grady (2013).
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