Ukrainian Literary Award ‘Coronation of the Word’
This year, the competition received six thousand submissions in different genres.
The award ceremony of the 19th international literary competition ‘Coronation of the Word’ has taken place in Kyiv. This year, it was dedicated to the memory of Ukrainian poet, songwriter, and composer Volodymyr Ivasuk.
“There are new stars at the literary Oscars. Many good people – this is what we’re expecting from the competition. These are people who’ve known each other for years. Some friends are meeting (for the first time) in 10 years. Newcomers are meeting everyone for the first time. The atmosphere is friendly,” competition co-founder Tetiana Lohush said.
“This is the third wave of new Ukrainian literature. The first one was in the 1920s-1930s, the second one – in the 1960s. And 19 years ago, we created the third powerful wave. It didn’t form spontaneously in the 1990s. We created a new incentive for writers, and it gave results,” competition co-founder Yuriy Lohush said.
This year, the competition received six thousand submissions in different genres. While evaluating the works, experts were forbidden to see the names of the authors. After the selection stage, the jury receives 20 texts belonging to each category.
“There are no strict criteria for selecting the best work, and there shouldn’t be. We are living in multi-genre times, when everything is mixed and we cannot limit the authors with frames. We talked about the literary value of the works with other jury members during a live discussion. We argued for two hours, fought for the works we liked, and finally made a decision,” jury member Pavlo Arie said.
The ‘Coronation of the Word’ competition featured dozens of categories. However, four of them; novel, play, song lyrics, and film script, have existed since the contest was founded. The latter category is judged by famous directors and film producers. Often after the competition, they start filming a movie based on the winning script. This year, the award went to Alla Melentyeva for her script “Kyivans’.
“This script tells about the life of a regular Kyiv family who found itself under unusual circumstances. The unusual circumstance is World War II. Half of the family survived, went through occupation, the Syrets concentration camp, Babi Yar. It’s a story of my family. I’m very glad that I brought it to life and paid tribute to these people,” she said.
The award for the best novel is considered to be the main prize of the competition. This year, it went to Vasyl Dobrianskyi, a writer and journalist from the Ivano-Frankivsk region.
“A couple of years ago, I returned to writing after a 10-year break. I wrote a few novels and submitted them to the ‘Coronation of the Word’. They were appreciated. They have already been published. And here I am again on this stage with a new novel – ‘Broken Stairs’,” he said.
The ‘Coronation of the Word’ also has a category for representatives of the Ukrainian diaspora, who write and publish their works abroad. The prizes went to residents of the United States, Greece, Malaysia, and other countries.