NEW WELSH WRITING AWARDS 2015: WWF CYMRU PRIZE FOR WRITING ON NATURE AND THE ENVIRONMENT #newwelshawards
New Welsh Review, in association with WWF Cymru and the CADCentre announced the winner of the inaugural New Welsh Writing Awards at a ceremony at the Old College in Aberystwyth on 25 February 2015. The Awards celebrated the finest non-fiction writing for works between 8,000 and 30,000 words on the theme of nature and the environment, judged by New Welsh Review Editor Gwen Davies and nature writer Mark Cocker.
Eluned Gramich came first with Scenes from a Hokkaidan Life and was presented with her cheque for £1,000 at a ceremony in Aberystwyth on 25 February by the eminent author, naturalist and environmental activist Mark Cocker, who judged the entries alongside magazine editor Gwen Davies. Elaine Ewart came second with Heligoland, An Ecology of Exile and Philip Jones was the runner-up with Waves on the Hydrocarbon Seas of Titan.
As well as £1,000 cash, Eluned Gramich’s work was published in e-book format as Woman Who Brings the Rain: A Memoir of Hokkaido, Japan by New Welsh Review ‘s e-book imprint New Welsh Rarebyte on 15 October 2015. Eluned also won a weekend stay at Gladstone’s Library, Flintshire, and a positive critique of the work by leading literary agent at WME, Cathryn Summerhayes, and lunch with her in London. Elaine Ewart won a week-long residential course of her choice at Tŷ Newydd Writers’ Centre in Gwynedd. Philip Jones, Eluned Gramich and Elaine Ewart also receive a year’s subscription to New Welsh Review.
Woman Who Brings the Rain has also been shortlisted for the Wales Book of the Year 2016: The Open University in Wales Creative Non-Fiction Award. Available in print via the Gwales website (£7.99) and Kindle ebook (£2.99).
Here is a two-minute interpretation of the winning work, Scenes from a Hokkaidan Life by Eluned Gramich: