Monday, April 27, 2015

Hedwig Anuar Children’s Book Award

I have been very upset with the National Arts Council (NAC) of late, especially when they rejected my application for the Iowa University's International Writer's Program (IWP). What's up with you NAC? This is like the rejection? Am I not a good author? Although I am a new writer, I have written 3 good books. How much more must I prove to you NAC?! Suddenly, few days ago, I received news that my second book 'The Mango Tree' has been shortlisted for the Hedwig Anuar's Children's Book Award (HABA). Dig that NAC!

The HABA is presented biennially to an outstanding, published children’s book by a Singaporean author or authors. 'The Mango Tree' is one of the 6 books shortlisted from 63 submissions and 3 shortlisted books had won other awards before HABA. 

Let's hope 'The Mango Tree' will bear sweet, juicy victory this time round. Fingers crossed! 

And the mother of irony is that the one who will be presenting the award is the Minister who knew about the Mango Tree saga (and he obviously let the Malay Heritage Foundation and the Mamanda restaurant do as they pleased). Imagine if the book wins the award, I will go on stage, smile widely, accept the prize and tell that Minister, "Sweet revenge!"

ps. The Mango Tree was shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize 2014 (English non-fiction). It was the only children's picture book while the other 4 were non-fiction novels. An amazing achievement for children's books!

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