Emirates Novel Award honours winning novels of second cohort

04 May 2015

Ahmad Al Hammadi and Nadia Al Najjar awarded AED 60,000 for “Best Novel” and “Best Short Novel” respectively

His Highness Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of the National Media Council, has honoured the winners in the second cohort of The Emirates Novel Award. Held under the patronage of His Highness and powered by twofour54, the winners were presented with the awards in a ceremony held at the Park Rotana hotel in Abu Dhabi in the presence of Noura Al Kaabi, CEO of twofour54; and Jamal Al Shehhi, Secretary General of the Emirates Novel Award.

The “Best Novel” category was awarded to Ahmad Al Hammadi for his work “The Last Day”; while Nadia Al Najjar received the “Best Short Novel” award for “Cities of Eagerness”. Both were commended for literary, creativity and originality. “Our Farm Conquers” by Hessa Al Mansouri, and “The Devil’s Hut” by Mohammad Al Habsi were both awarded Commendation awards.

Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Rashid Abdullah Al Nuaimi, was presented with the “Distinctive Emirati Author” award as he was the author of the first Emirati novel, “Shahenda’s Novel”. Additionally, Badriya Al Bashar, renowned Saudi author of many novels and short story collections and winner of the “Best Column” Award at the 11th Arab Journalism Awards, was the honorary guest of the ceremony.

HE Noura Al Kaabi, CEO of twofour54, said: “I would like to congratulate the winners of The Emirates Novel Award and we are honoured to have played a role in their development as writers through this successful Award programme. This is an important initiative that celebrates Arab creativity and literature, and helps to both preserve and create new aspects of our rich heritage and identity.”

“As the regional hub of media, twofour54 is dedicated to nurturing creative talent. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the Emirates Novel Award and hosting its training workshops, helping aspiring Emirati writers to shine.”

Jamal Al Shehhi, Secretary General of the Emirates Novel Award, commented: “This year marks the second cycle of the Emirates Novel Award and we are very proud of this year’s winners. The quality of the work submitted is incredibly good and the winners have demonstrated native wit and creative energy that have resulted in great literary work. Today, we celebrate a new and upcoming generation of novelists who are ready to take the local literary scene by storm.”

“The Emirates Novel Award aims to promote literature and novels among Emiratis looking to explore different avenues to document their stories and present them to the public. The award has a significant value in recognising local talent and we hope that by celebrating the winners today, its influence is spread even further across regional and international borders,” he added.

The winners in each category received a monetary award of AED 60,000 while Commendation awards received AED 20,000. The winning novels will be published in time for print copies to be available at the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair which is being held 7-10 May this year.

The Emirates Novel Award was launched in 2014 and powered by twofour54 to acknowledge and support Emirati talents in literature, highlight the literary culture of the Emirati society and educate the community on the importance of reading and writing. twofour54 hosted the workshops of the Novelists’ Programme, which is set up by The Emirates Novel Award to teach aspiring Emirati novelists professional writing techniques.

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