CBC Literary Prizes

"Getaway" by Emma Drummond

Emma Drummond has made the 2017 CBC Nonfiction Prize longlist for "Getaway".

2017 CBC Nonfiction Prize longlist

Emma Drummond is a 19-year-old high school graduate living in Waterloo, Ont. (Jennifer Durrer)

Emma Drummond has made the 2017 CBC Nonfiction Prize longlist for "Getaway".

About Emma

Emma Drummond is a 19-year-old high school graduate living in Waterloo, Ont. She was born by the light of a kerosene lantern on her parents' Mennonite farm near Wingham, Ont. She was raised in the Old Order Mennonite community, and is the youngest of seven siblings. Two years ago, Emma left the Mennonites and stepped into the modern world. She has never looked back. Although she has faced obstacles and devastating discouragement, she continues her journey with inner strength and the support of relatives. This is Emma's first effort at writing her story for publication.

Entry in five-ish words

My escape from the Mennonites.

The story's source of inspiration

"My most dramatic and pivotal event that I have encountered in my 19 years, which changed my life forever by affecting every aspect of my life."

First lines

"I snapped a brussels sprout off its stalk and concentrated on carefully harvesting the green knobs. I was helping my married sister before the next family had me in its grasp for maid duty. The bottom of my ankle-length dress was wet from the dew and swished against my rubber boots. I tugged at my kerchief to bring it closer to my forehead. Ruth didn't mind extra exposure of my hair but most Mennonite women would turn a disapproving brow to the display of a girl's immodest hair.

"Ruth glanced up. 'What are you thinking about?' she demanded. She had this habit of asking me that question at the most unexpected times. I kept my head bent to conceal my anxiety. 'I was just thinking about what quilt to make this winter.' I stood up and brushed my faded apron nonchalantly."

About the 2017 CBC Nonfiction Prize

The winner of the 2017 CBC Nonfiction Prize will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, will have an opportunity to attend a 10-day writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity and have their story published on CBC Books and in Air Canada enRoute magazine. Four finalists will receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and have their story published on CBC Books

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