GRATIAEN PRIZE 2018 shortlist in April | Sunday Observer

GRATIAEN PRIZE 2018 shortlist in April

The Gratiaen Prize 2018 shortlist will be announced on Monday April 8, 6pm at the British Council Library, Colombo at which a moderated discussion with the longlisted authors will also take place.

The Gratiaen Prize was founded in 1993 by the Sri Lankan-born writer Michael Ondaatje after he won the Booker Prize for The English Patient. The Gratiaen Prize 2018, the first after the Prize celebrated its 25th year, sees a number of significant changes.

This year, given the quality of the submissions received, the Prize is pleased to announce a longlist of eight authors. The event to announce the short list on April 8 will also follow a different format by including a discussion with the long-listed writers, moderated by Ruhanie Perera. The prize will be presented under the Gratiaen Trust’s partnership with Sarasavi Bookshop (Pvt) Ltd, who will be sponsoring the main prize awarding event on June 9 at the BMICH.

The Prize is awarded each year to the best submitted creative work in English, written by a Sri Lankan writer resident in Sri Lanka. Both, published works and unpublished manuscripts are accepted as submissions. This year, another award donated by Michael Ondaatje - the H.A.I. Goonetileke Prize for Translation for the years 2017-18 - is also being awarded. There is no shortlist announcement for the H.A.I Goonetileke Prize and the winner will be announced at the main Gratiaen Prize awarding event in June.

The judges for the Gratiaen Prize 2018 are: Gill Caldicott, Director, British Council, Sri Lanka (chair) who has taught English literature and is a strong promoter of literature in general; Ramya Jirasinghe, creative writer and researcher; and Andi Schubert, university academic and social researcher. The judges for the H.A.I. Goonetileke Prize for Translations 2017-18 are: Sumathy Sivamohan (chair), film maker and academic; Saumya Liyanage, dramatist, actor and academic; Charulatha Thewarathanthri, writer; and Esther Surenthiraraj, university academic.

The shortlist event is supported by The British Council, Sri Lanka as has been the practice.

The collection of manuscripts for the Gratiaen and H.A.I. Goonetileke prizes and many administrative activities of the Gratiaen Trust, which administers the prizes, are facilitated by the MARGA Institute which has been supporting the Trust from its outset.

Following from its 25th year when the Gratiaen Trust offered a creative writing workshop in partnership with Commonwealth Writers, this year the Trust is organizing an Editing and Publishing workshop entitled Making the Cut in May in partnership with the renowned Seagull Foundation of India.

This innovative event will see Calcutta-based Seagull resource persons travelling to Sri Lanka and conducting an intensive training program covering a range of aspects related to editing and publishing in creative writing. The event is supported by the Postgraduate Institute of English, The Open University of Sri Lanka at which the workshop will be held.

The 2018 Gratiaen Prize Long List

Seneka Abeyratne - The Beast and Other Stories

Elmo Jayawardena - Kakiyan: The Story of a Crow

Chamali Kariyawasam - Catharsis

Shehan Karunatilaka - Chats with the Dead

Upali Mahaliyana - Youthful Escapades

Ayathurai Santhan - Every Journey Ends

Arun Welandawe-Prematilleke - The One Who Loves You So

Zeneefa Zaneer - They Failed to Kill Her