Rowda Mohamud and Brandon Trotter win new $10K faith-based literary prize

The Ross and Davis Mitchell Prize for Faith and Writing recognizes writers who focus on the theme of religious faith in Canada.
Calgary-based writer Brandon Trotter and Rowda Mohamud of Oakville, Ont. are 2017 winners of the inaugural Ross and Davis Mitchell Prize for Faith and Writing. (faithincanada150.ca)

Two emerging Canadian writers are the winners of the inaugural Ross and Davis Mitchell Prize for Faith and Writing.

The literary prize, with a purse totalling $25,000, is awarded to short story and poetry writers who focus on the theme of religious faith in Canada.

Rowda Mohamud of Oakville, Ont., who is a Somali-born Canadian Muslim poet, took home the $10,000 poetry prize for her collection of poems Please Find Yourself a Space.

Calgary-based Christian writer, actor and arts chaplain Brandon Trotter won the $10,000 short story prize for his story, Saint 148.

The prize is founded by the think tank Cardus, which is "dedicated to the renewal of North American social architecture."

The runners-up in both categories each received $2,500. New Brunswick-born poet Shane Neilson was the poetry runner-up for his collection Loss Sonnets. Susan Fish, a writer and editor from Waterloo, Ont., was the short story runner-up for her story Easter Water.

The judges for the poetry category were parliamentary poet laureate George Elliott Clarke, U.K.-based British-Canadian poet Todd Swift and Deborah Bowen, the chair of the English department at Redeemer University College in Ancaster, Ont.

The short story category was judged by PEN Canada president Randy Boyagoda, literary critic, professor and writer David Staines and novelist and psychotherapist Susan Lynn Reynolds.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.