2019 Winners of the New Media Writing Prize
On Wednesday 15 January 2020 it was the 10th Anniversary Awards Evening of the New Media Writing Prize (NMWP) at Bournemouth University. This international prize encourages and promotes the best in new media writing; showcasing innovative digital fiction, poetry and journalism. The types of interactive writing that we have been examining and researching in the emerging formats work at the Library.
Before the NMWP winners were announced there was a fun hands-on session in the afternoon, for guests to experience Digital Fiction Curios. This is an immersive experience; re-imagining selected Flash-based digital fiction by the One to One Development Trust in Virtual Reality, made in collaboration with Sheffield Hallam University. Here in the Library we are interested in their playful and innovative approach to preserving the experiences of reading their digital works, and last October the project team were invited to showcase this work to British Library staff for them to try in VR.
On to the main NMWP awards event, like in previous years, the 2019 competition had attracted strong entries from many parts of the world. With submissions from six continents, the event’s host Jim Pope pointed out that Antarctica was the only geographic area not to have participated yet.
Congratulations to all the 2019 winners:
- The if:book UK New Media Writing Prize, the main category, was won by Maria Ivanova and her team of volunteers: Anna Gorovaya, Alexey Logvinov, Mike Stonelake, Anton Zayceve and Ekaterina Polyakova, from Belarus for ‘The Life of Grand Duchess Elizabeth’. A stunning biographical narrative, featuring open source archive photographs and quotations from the memoirs of generous philanthropist Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna of Russia. A granddaughter of English Queen Victoria, who lived during several key events in the history of Russia: including the Russo-Japanese War, the First World War, the revolutions of 1905 and 1917.She became one of the brightest philanthropists of Russia.
- The Future Journalism award was won by Mahmoud El Wakea’s ‘Made in Prison’, an investigation of Jihadi radicalisation in Egypt.
- The Unicorn Training Student award was won by Kenneth Sanchez for ‘Escaping the Chaos’. An emotive portrayal of Venezuelan migrants in Peru, with video footage of individuals telling their personal stories.
- The Dot award for 2019 went to Clare Pollard, editor of Modern Poetry in Translation, the award will enable them to digitise their magazine and to grow their magazine internationally.
It was gratifying to see that Lynda Clark featured on the main prize shortlist for her work ‘The Memory Archivist’, which was made during her Innovation Placement at the British Library in 2019. Also previous Eccles Centre Fellow, J.R. Carpenter, for the hydro-graphic novel ‘The Pleasure of the Coast’, created in partnership with the Archives Nationales in Paris.
Full shortlists were:
The 2019 if:book main prize shortlist:
- The Life of Grand Duchess Elizabeth, by Maria Ivanova (winner)
- The Data Souls, by David Thomas Henry Wright
- The Pleasure of the Coast, by J.R. Carpenter
- The Wonders of Lost Trajectories, by Jason Nelson
- The Memory Archivist, by Lynda Clark
The Unicorn Student Award 2019 shortlist:
- Escaping the Chaos, by Kenneth Sanchez (winner)
- An Untold Story, by Nia Taylor Aiken and Danielle Werner
- Fake or Truth?, by Maria Stroiteleva
- NovaCorp, by Marine Bernard
The Future Journalism Award 2019 shortlist for the best digital interactive journalism, awarded by Future PLC:
- Made in Prison, by Mahmoud el Wakea (winner)
- Escaping the Chaos, by Kenneth Sanchez
- The KO King, by Steve Kilgallon and team
- The Uyghur Women Fighting China’s Surveillance State, by Isobel Cockerell
If reading this blog post is inspiring you to consider entering the Prize in 2020, please do keep your eyes peeled for their call for submissions later in the year. You can follow NMWP on twitter and Facebook. Also do check out the Competition Rules and the FAQs to make sure your creative output fits the competition's criteria.