The entries for this new literary award initiated by Fairway Holdings closed on September 15, with tremendous response from writers and publishers. A total of 89 entries were recoded for the first edition alone. Sinhala, Tamil and English novels published in 2014/15 are eligible to win this prize. The initiation of this award followed the partnership formed between Fairway Holdings and the Galle Literary Festival.
The FGLF will be held in three cities following this upcoming edition in order to reach a larger audience. The festival will be held on January 8-9, 2016 in Kandy, Galle 14 to17 and in Jaffna 23 to 24.
The release of the list of short-listed entries has been scheduled to take place by the end of November. Thus give critics the opportunity to review them on forums in national newspapers. Speaking to the press, Fairway Holdings Chairman, Hemaka de Alwis stated, “We are encouraged by the response we got from writers and publishers, considering it’s the first time we are initiating such a national-level activity. Through the Fairway National Literary Award, we hope to recognize and reward Sri Lankan authors and encourage them to strive towards excellence. The award also compliments the Galle Literary Festival, which we are very pleased to be associated with. Through the revival of this unique event, we hope to contribute towards the development of arts and culture of this country. For a country to be rich, peace and prosperity alone is not enough. Its people need to be culturally sophisticated.”
A total of five publications from each language will be shortlisted for this award, and the best novel comprising the most excellent and creative work from each stream as per the decision of the panel of judges will be eligible for a cash award of Rs. 500,000 Further, every book that has been shortlisted will earn a reward o f Rs. 100,000. The award ceremony will be held in Galle in January 2016 to coincide with the Galle Literary Festival.