About the award

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - READS -

THE World Read­ers Award was an­nounced last year (“Bor­der­less books”, Star2, April 12, 2015) with the in­ten­tion of search­ing out “the best read of the year”.

Mooted by the Hong Kong and Aus­tralia- based Asia Pa­cific Writ­ers And Trans­la­tors ( APWT) as­so­ci­a­tion, it was in­tro­duced to hon­our good lit­er­a­ture with no ge­o­graph­i­cal re­stric­tions, no spe­cific na­tion­al­ity re­quire­ment, and no genre ex­clu­sions ( for in­stance, no dis­tinc­tions are made be­tween fic­tion and non­fic­tion, or adult and young adult books).

The world’s top lit­er­ary awards, such as the Bri­tain- based Man Booker Prize and the Amer­i­can Pulitzer Prize, usu­ally have re­stric­tions that ex­clude many of the world’s writ­ers: the for­mer is open only to books pub­lished in Bri­tain, while the lat­ter is re­stricted to au­thors with an Amer­i­can pass­port. The World Read­ers Award’s sole cri­te­ria is that the books be writ­ten with the world’s di­ver­sity in mind. Only books writ­ten in or trans­lated into English are el­i­gi­ble.

On Tues­day, the in­au­gu­ral award went to Beauty Is A Wound by In­done­sian au­thor Eka Kur­ni­awan ( see story on page 12). Ac­cord­ing to the award’s web­site, worl­dread­er­saward. com, a Young Writer of the Year award was also given out and was won by Gabrielle Mei Ying Tse, aged 16, for her “com­plex, mul­ti­level short story, Ter­ra­cotta”.

“To­day we de­clare war on any sug­ges­tion that peo­ple on the East­ern side of the planet can­not be richly, pow­er­fully, de­light­fully cre­ative in the world of lit­er­a­ture,” said prize chair­man Vit­tachi on Tues­day in Hong Kong, where the cer­e­mony was held.

Ac­cord­ing to the web­site, the award was co­or­di­nated by vol­un­teers from the APWT, work­ing with PPP, a pub­lish­ing com­pany and the prize or­ga­nizer in Hong Kong. The young writ­ers awards were ar­ranged through the Hong Kong Young Writ­ers’ Award team: the award, al­though orig­i­nally de­signed for Hong Kong schools only, have be­come pop­u­lar with en­tries from sev­eral coun­tries.

For more in­for­ma­tion on the Asia Pa­cific Writ­ers’ and Trans­la­tors’ as­so­ci­a­tion, go to ap­writ­ers. com; for more in­for­ma­tion on the award, go to worl­dread­er­saward. com.

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