Budding Writers 2009 – Inspiration behind young writers’ winning works transpires into support for social causes
Winning entries published in both print and digital format for the first time, with Marshall Cavendish donating part of the proceeds to organisations that champion the young authors’ causes and beliefs
Singapore. December 4, 2009 – Marshall Cavendish, a member of Times Publishing Limited, today announced the winners of Budding Writers Project 2009, in conjunction with a prize presentation and book launch graced by Mr S Iswaran, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Trade and Industry, and Ministry of Education. The annual initiative aims to promote creative writing among primary and secondary school students in Singapore, and this year’s winners will see their winning entries published in both print and digital format for the first time. Part of the proceeds from the book sales will also go to organisations that champion the causes and beliefs the authors wrote about in their stories.
Budding Writers Project 2009 recorded the largest number of entries in the competition’s history with a total of 615 entries, a 54 per cent jump from last year.
"Authors are the backbone of the publishing industry anywhere in the world. Strongly rooted in Singapore, Marshall Cavendish is committed to the cultivation of talented local writers from a tender age, so that the reservoir of writers continues to expand in Singapore. Budding Writers can also serve to open doors for them on the international stage," said Shane Armstrong, Senior Group Publisher and Head of Marshall Cavendish Publishing Group. Senior Group Publisher and Head of Marshall Cavendish Publishing Group.
Budding Writers 2009 Winning Entries
Lee Kitt Anya, 11, from Singapore Chinese Girls’ School, won the Primary School category with her story "The Crying Dream", based on an Indian foreign worker who came to work in Singapore as a construction worker. The story creates awareness of how foreign workers are treated and their harsh living conditions. Anya was inspired to write her story when she saw some foreign workers sitting at the back of a lorry, drenched in a heavy downpour.
Yuli Steffina, 16, from Raffles Girls’ School (Secondary) won the Secondary School category with "Ricky Learns to Fly", about a bird named Ricky that overcame daunting peer pressure and despite encountering some difficulty at first, learnt how to fly.
Steffina revealed, "What started as a children’s literature school project eventually grew to mean something more meaningful to me. While it was challenging to balance my schoolwork with the competition, I hope to inspire young children and encourage them to persevere to achieve their dreams. I have read my story to a kindergarten class and received very positive feedback, which has spurred me on further. I have learnt so much from the Budding Writers editorial attachment. I now know what goes into the production of a book from start to finish, and this will come in handy when I plan for my future stories."
"The students have truly raised the standards of the competition this year. Not only did they write creatively, they also drew beautifully to express their imagination. We look forward to seeing even more talented young writers getting inspired for next year," said Armstrong.
Proceeds to Support Winners’ Causes
Part of the proceeds from the book sales will go to organisations that champion the causes and beliefs the authors wrote about in their stories.
A portion of the proceeds of Anya’s book "The Crying Dream" will go to Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (HOME), an organisation that responds to the special needs of migrant communities. The preface of Anya’s book is endorsed by Bridget Lew, Founder-President of HOME.
On the other hand, a part of the proceeds from Steffina’s book "Ricky Learns to Fly" will be given to I Love Children and the Centre for Fathering, and the preface of her book is endorsed by Lim Soon Hock, Chairman of National Family Council.
The two winners will receive royalties from their book sales, nurturing them not only into young writers, but also young entrepreneurs. They will also conduct a book-signing on December 7, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at Times Bookstores, located on level three of Tampines 1.
New Digital Initiative
Recognising the new consumption patterns of readers today underscored by the rise of e-books and the proliferation of digital content, Marshall Cavendish will publish the winning stories in digital formats. This new digital initiative was introduced as part of the usual four-day Budding Writers editorial attachment programme, which allows the winners to experience the entire authorship process.
The first day of the attachment was spent going through the pre-publication process spanning editing, illustrating and designing, while the second and third day were dedicated to content digitisation and sales and marketing training respectively. The winners also visited Times Printers on the last day to view their final products after having walked through the entire commercial printing process from prepress to production.
Learning EDvantage (LEAD), a subsidiary of Marshall Cavendish, conducted the digitisation segment of the attachment programme. The winning e-books will be hosted on the LEAD and Budding Writers websites.
Adeline Foo, an award-winning local children’s book author and a judge in Budding Writers Project 2009, remarked, "The entries this time round demonstrated the writers’ maturity and stance on current issues, and have strong moral undertones and inspiring themes."
The panel of judges this year also included Duriya Aziz, Deputy General Manager and Publisher of Marshall Cavendish Education, as well as Judy Ling, an author of children’s books and of the textbooks and workbooks of the "My Pals are Here! English" series.
The two winners presented their published books to Mr S Iswaran, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Trade and Industry, and Ministry of Education and narrated a few pages of their books for the crowd. The published books were put on display and available for sale at the awards ceremony. Also on exhibit were the entries of the other 18 finalists in the competition. They will also conduct a book-signing on December 7, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at Times Bookstores, located on level three of Tampines 1.
To learn more about Budding Writers Project, please visit www.marshallcavendish.com/education/buddingwriters.