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– bemoans ‘poor quality’ of submissions By Kiana WilburgSecretary and Administrator to the Board on the Guyana Prize for Literature Award, Al Creighton, has strongly defended the deadline set for entries for the competition.The Guyana Prize for Literature Award has been open for entries from interested writers since December last year and the deadline is February 28.But concerns have surfaced in relation to the deadline not allowing writers enough time to prepare and submit competitive work.Al Creighton, Secretary to the Board on the Guyana Prize For LiteratureBut Creighton said that such a line of argument is “simply missing the point”.The columnist said that to extend the closing date to two months at least, which was recommended by some critics, is throwing the concept of the Prize totally off.“We have to depend on the panel of judges and it does not coincide with their schedules. We aim as well for it to be done in time with Independence Day and for it to be a part of that period,” Creighton asserted.He said,Cheap Stitched Jerseys, too, that the Prize was originally for published books and it awards Guyana’s best literature but after receiving numerous complaints about what should qualify for the Prize, it was subsequently broadened to allow unpublished work or manuscripts rather to be entered.“However, we don’t expect a lot of people will wait until it’s announced that it is time to submit their work and then to start writing. It is expected that they would be in readiness to submit,” he added.He noted too that the Committee on the Prize would ensure that workshops are held and last year, one was held in January and another in February. These, he said, are conducted to help writers interested in submitting work for the Prize, since they are assisted with the editing process.“But let’s not forget that you don’t make a writer in two months,” he retorted.Weaknesses of writersThe Prize Secretary said that it is often faced with many challenges by writers who would provide work for consideration.The first he cited as the lack of basic quality of writing. Creighton said that the work the Committee gets is not of a high quality and shows that it is written “by those who are learning to write”.“So it reflects that they are apprentices.”Two-time winner of the Guyana Prize for Literature, Ruel JohnsonThe second point he raised was that the work in some cases reflect that “some really aren’t good writers and that is the plain fact. Everyone is not born a writer and that is often reflected.”Creighton on his third weakness highlighted that poorly edited work is often a bother. “If you write 50 poems, not all will be ready and that’s the kind of problem we have sometimes. I remember one year the judges made a decision to drop a book because it had good work but it was a collection of poorly edited work.”Two-time winner Ruel Johnson has been very outspoken about his take on the prize. In a letter to the media, Johnson opined that the while the Prize is around the corner again, the time frame for preparation is simply too short.This preparation time,Cheap Jerseys From China, he said,Jerseys Wholesale, is inadequate, especially for those who are unfamiliar with the actual workings of the prize, in order to submit work that can actually compete. He stressed as well on the need for standing workshop facilities.Johnson believes that the Prize is yet to fulfill its commitment to resident writers, particularly as it relates to fostering quality writing in Guyana.“This presumes the establishment of either standing or ad hoc developmental mechanisms, the sort of which the Guyana Prize Management Committee has perennially failed to put in place,Cheap Nike NFL Jerseys,” he had said.Additionally, Johnson drew attention to the point that at the previous award ceremony, he had stated that approximately $4.7 million was said to be budgeted for workshops under the Ministry of Culture and Arts Development Fund.He posited that the workshops conducted did not, in his professional opinion, seem to be a true reflection of those funds allocated.Creighton, in responding to this allegation said, “As for the $4.7 million cited by Johnson, it was inaccurate. Now the workshops we have were going on for 12 months. Some of them were conducted by persons from overseas and these things cost money.“We have had to pay for air fares in some cases, accommodation, pay them in some cases for their services,Jerseys NFL Cheap, but I don’t want to get into a fight over costs and have it turn into a political issue. Johnson has been determined to do that. He was asked to do a few and refused payment. But what I am saying is that the writers need to continue working and improving,” Creighton stated.Additionally, Johnson’s recommendations to the Prize Committee were the deadline be pushed back at least two months, to the end of April in order to give resident writers a fair chance at preparing competitive work; there be a public education campaign and consultations aimed at informing writers as well as the general public about the Prize; there be writing workshops conducted, both open and in schools, under the aegis of the Prize, in conjunction with the Institute of Creative Arts.He also suggested that, providing that the requisite boards are put in place, shortlisted or honourable mention manuscripts from resident writers be further edited and published by the Caribbean Press.Kaieteur News had also contacted persons who had submitted their work for the prize and some agreed implicitly with Johnson’s recommendations.The Prize Secretary said that Johnson’s suggestions were acknowledged by the Board at one of their meetings but they felt that the writer does not fully understand what the Prize is all about.Contrary to what the award winning writer posited, Creighton said that the Prize has campaigns that have been going on for years.“We have brochures, but we desperately need the help of the media. We send press releases trying to educate the public about the Prize, but the media would have its own idea about what it thinks is news and it would never see the light of day. The Prize needs a lot of help with that kind of exposure,Cheap Jerseys,” he concluded.
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