The Emerging Caribbean Writers Prize, formerly known as the Hollick Arvon Caribbean Writers Prize, is an award which allows an emerging Caribbean writer living and working in the Caribbean to devote time to advancing or finishing a literary work, with support from an established writer as mentor. Sponsored by the Hollick Family Charitable Trust for a period of 3 years (2013-2015), the Prize awarded writers in three literary genres over consecutive years: fiction in year one (2013); non-fiction in year two (2014); and poetry in year three (2015).
The Prize is jointly administered by the non-profit organisation the Bocas Lit Fest and the creative writing organisation Arvon.
Previous winners of this much-coveted and valuable Prize are Trinidadian Danielle Boodoo-Fortuné in 2015 (poetry), Jamaican Diana McCaulay in 2014 (non-fiction), and the inaugural Prize in 2013 went to Trinidadian Barbara Jenkins (fiction).
The Bocas Lit Fest is now seeking a new sponsor with regional reach to take over the funding of this unique Caribbean-wide prize from 2016.
The Prize consists of:
Danielle Boodoo-Fortuné from Trinidad and Tobago was announced as the winner of the 2015 Hollick Arvon Prize on Saturday 2 May at the 2015 NGC Bocas Lit Fest in Port of Spain.
Poets from the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, and Trinidad and Tobago were shortlisted for the Prize.
The five shortlisted writers were:
A further five poets were included on the longlist, announced on 15 March:
The ten longlisted poets were selected by the judges from an overall 53 entries, the largest number since the Prize started in 2013.
The international judging panel of five was chaired by Funso Aiyejina, author, scholar, and former Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Education at UWI’s St. Augustine campus. On behalf of his fellow judges, Dr. Ayejina said, “Any one of the five shortlisted poets is good enough to walk away with the prize! These poets are confident explorers of the human condition. They possess the requisite individual styles for an effortless articulation of their visions, and are as much children of the great poetic tradition of the Caribbean as they are purveyors of new vistas and metaphors.”
The other judges were Ruth Borthwick, Chief Executive, Arvon; Edward Baugh, poet and scholar; Jennifer Hewson, literary agent, Rogers, Coleridge & White; and Caroline Hollick, representative of the Hollick Family Charitable Trust.
To be eligible for the 2015 Hollick Arvon Caribbean Writers Prize, a writer must:
Download the 2015 prize guidelines and entry form here.
The 2014 Hollick Arvon Caribbean Writers Prize was for the genre of literary non-fiction. Diana McCaulay of Jamaica was announced as the winner on the 26 April 2014 at the NGC Bocas Lit Fest.
In March 2014, the judges announced a list of eight finalists:
The inaugural Hollick Arvon Caribbean Writers Prize was for the genre of fiction. Barbara Jenkins of Trinidad and Tobago was announced as the winner on Saturday 27 April, during the 2013 NGC Bocas Lit Fest. Barbara Jenkins has since published her debut work of fiction, Sic Transit Wagon (Peepal Tree Press, 2013) and is working on her first novel.
In April 2013, the judging panel for the inaugural Hollick Arvon Prize announced a shortlist of six:
A further eight writers were included on the longlist, announced in March: