By Jana Zoriry – EMTV Online, Port Moresby
A Trinidad writer has won the ‘2018 COMMONWEALTH SHORT STORY’ Prize.
Kevin Jared Hosein stunned the jury chaired by the novelist and poet Sarah Hall with “a truly crafted piece of fiction” to claim the world’s most global literary prize.
Hosein was surprised by the announcement and says he was not expecting to be the winner.
“First to be among this eclectic quintet of winning stories, all with central resonating themes – happiness, connection, isolation, freedom, repression, acceptance; then, to be chosen from that, I feel incredibly honoured that this Trinidadian tale has travelled so far”.
Novelist and poet, Sarah hall described Hosein’s story “a truly crafted piece of fiction”.
“Our winning story, ‘Passage ‘, was immediately and uniformly admired by the judges. It is an uncanny bar story, about a man who hears a strange tale, only to become part of the tale’s re-lived strangeness.
It balances between formal language and demotic, ideas of civility and ferality, is tightly women and suspenseful, beautifully and eerily atmospheric, and finally surprising,” says Sarah Hall.
Hosein hoped that others in his region were inspired by this accomplishment.
Hosein had written three books, The Beast of Kukuyo (Burt Award for Caribbean Literature), The Repenters (OCM Bocas Prize for Fiction shortlist) and Littletown Secrets. He had been shortlisted twice for the Small Axe Prize Prose, and his work has been featured in numerous publications, such as Lightspeed, Adda and most recently, We Mark Your Memory: Writing from the Descendants of Indenture.