Writers’ Trust Distinguished Contribution Award
For more than 100 years they have played a leading role in bringing Canadian stories and storytellers to the forefront of this country’s culture. We honour them in recognition of a prize they founded a quarter-century ago that has helped launch the writing careers of countless Canadian stars. Twenty-five years ago, Avie Bennett, then president of McClelland & Stewart, devised the structure of the Journey Prize and launched an annual anthology that featured the work of new and developing writers. The prize would recognize the writer of the best short story that had its first publication in a Canadian literary journal. That first anthology published in 1989 contained short stories from such notable writers as David Bergen, Frances Itani, Thomas King, M.G. Vassanji, and Bronwen Wallace. Subsequent anthologies have included a who’s-who list of our country’s greatest writers. This prize, which has become the starting point for so many Canadian writers, making winners of 25 emerging writers and advancing the careers of the close to 300 writers who’ve seen their work appear in the anthology – giving them all a public acknowledgement of their talent at a pivotal stage in their career. We are proud to recognize McClelland & Stewart for the influential role they have played in developing the Canadian writing community’s next generation of talent through the creation of the Journey Prize.
As "the Canadian Publishers" it is natural that the McClelland & Stewart name should be associated with the fine fiction of authors like Rohinton Mistry, Alice Munro, Michael Ondaatje, and Jane Urquhart. In addition to redesigning the classic New Canadian Library series, McClelland & Stewart launched Emblem Editions as their trade paperback line, and includes fiction and non-fiction in reprint editions, as well as select titles that originate in paperback. M&S takes pride in being the only major trade house in Canada to continue to publish poetry, and is proud of its leading role in dealing with environmental and Native issues, problems in the justice system, Canadian history, and other matters of national concern, with books and authors representing every part of Canada.
McClelland & Stewart founded the Journey Prize in 1989. Now known as the Writers' Trust of Canada/McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize, the $10,000 prize is awarded annually to an emerging and developing writer of distinction for a short story published in a Canadian literary publication. This award is made possible by James A. Michener's generous donation of his Canadian royalties earnings from his novel Journey, published by McClelland & Stewart in 1988. The Journey Prize itself is the most significant monetary award given in Canada to a developing writer for a short story or excerpt from a fiction work-in-progress. The winner of the Journey Prize is selected from among the stories that appear in the current volume of The Journey Prize Stories, published annually in the fall by McClelland & Stewart.
About the Prize
Established in 2005, this prize is presented annually to an individual or an organization in recognition of their long-standing involvement with the Writers' Trust of Canada. The award honours those individuals and organizations which, through their on-going commitment of time, energy, and resources, have given selflessly to shape and further the aims of the Writers' Trust. The recipient of the 2013 prize was announced on November 20 at the annual Writers’ Trust Awards.