Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Robin McGrath and Mary Dalton Shortlisted for Heritage and History Award

Writers' Alliance Announces the Shortlist for the 2007 Heritage and History Award

(May 13, 2008 – St. John’s, NL) In partnership with the Historic Sites Association, the Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador administers the Heritage and History Award for a work of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, or children’s/young adult literature that exemplifies excellence in the interpretation of the history and heritage of Newfoundland and Labrador. The Historic Sites Association sponsors this award as a way to demonstrate appreciation for those writers whose exploration of their culture and heritage has shaped their writing.

The 2007 Heritage and History Award Shortlist, listed alphabetically by author:
  • Vikings to U-Boats: The German Experience in Newfoundland and Labrador by Gerhard P. Bassler (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2006)
  • Red Ledger by Mary Dalton (VĂ©hicule Press, 2006)
  • Covenant of Salt by Robin McGrath (Killick Press, 2005)
  • Lost Country: The Rise and Fall of Newfoundland, 1843-1933 by Patrick O’Flaherty (Long Beach Press, 2005)
The winner of the 2007 Heritage and History Award will be announced during the local Atlantic Book Awards reading, to be held on Thursday, May 15, 2008, beginning at 7 p.m. at The Studio on Water Street in St. John’s.

The Heritage and History Award was first presented in 2004 and is awarded annually. The winner receives a $250 cash prize. Past award winners include talented authors Michael Crummey, Maura Hanrahan, and Robin McGrath. Currently, the shortlist is selected from among those books submitted to the Newfoundland and Labrador Book Awards.

Gerhard Bassler, a Professor Emeritus in Memorial University’s Department of History, has written extensively on German-speaking migrations to Newfoundland/Labrador and Canada. His last three books are Sanctuary Denied, Alfred Valdmanis and the Politics of Survival, and Vikings to U-Boats. He is currently completing a book on post-World War II German migrations to Canada. Bassler has lived in St. John’s since 1965.

Mary Dalton is one of Newfoundland’s most prominent poets. Dalton has published four collections, for which she has won multiple awards, including the 1997 Government of Newfoundland and Labrador Arts and Letters Competition for Poetry, the 1998 TickleAce/Cabot Award for Poetry, and the 2005 E. J. Pratt Award for Poetry. Currently living in St. John’s, Dalton maintains an active academic interest in Newfoundland poetry while also researching contemporary Canadian and Irish poetry.

Robin McGrath is the author of a number of works, including Escaped Domestics, Hoist Your Sails and Run, Donovan’s Station, Salt Fish and Shmattes, and Livyers World. She is winner of the Henry Fuerstenberg Poetry Prize, the Geldert Medal, and the inaugural Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage and History Award. McGrath lives in Goose Bay, Labrador, where she is on the Board of Directors of Them Days magazine and is a feature writer for Labrador Life.

Patrick O’Flaherty was born in Long Beach, Conception Bay. He is the author of two books of short stories, two novels, a survey of writing about Newfoundland and Labrador, and a travel guide that is now in its third edition. In collaboration with historian Peter Neary, he wrote Part of the main: an illustrated history of Newfoundland and Labrador and edited an anthology of writing about Newfoundland and Labrador. More recently, O’Flaherty completed two volumes on Newfoundland political history, Old Newfoundland: A History to 1843 and Lost Country: The Rise and Fall of Newfoundland, 1843-1933.

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Media contact:
Shoshanna Wingate, Executive Director
Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador
102-155 Water Street
St. John’s, NL
Tel: 709-739-5215
Email: wanl@nf.aibn.com


Robin McGrath is the author of numerous books, among them Donovan's Station and Coasting Trade. Mary Dalton is the author of the acclaimed poetry collection, Merrybegot. All three books are available as unabridged audiobooks from Rattling Books.