Samoa Observer calling all Pacific writers

By Aruna Lolani 30 September 2017, 12:00AM

Prestige, financial prizes and the chance for your story to be read worldwide.

This is what lies ahead for authors of successful entries in the 2017 Samoa Observer Tusitala Short Story competition.

This is a competition specifically set up for writers in the Pacific. 

The top three entries from the three areas, Australia and New Zealand, Samoa and All other Pacific Islands, win generous, cash prizes of US$1,000 each. Then the overall winner judged from those three categories, receives an additional US$2,000.

But that’s not all.

A further 12 or so stories from the competition will be included with the winners’ entries and published in a book of short stories in the third ‘Our Heritage, the Ocean’ series. 

From today, you may start submitting your entries online from Sunday 1 October – Friday 10 November on the website, 

Organising Committee member, Marj Moore, said this is the third year this competition has been running. 

It was started as an initiative in 2015 by the Samoa Observer Editor in Chief, Gatoaitele Savea Sano Malifa a noted writer, published author and poet.

He wanted to provide a forum for Pacific writers to tell the stories of their own lives and to share issues and ideas which were important to them.  

Following the success of this inaugural competition, the stories in that 2015 publication were later translated into Chinese by the Chinese Ambassador in Samoa, Wang Xuefeng and Madam Tong Xin. That translation of Pacific stories was then published in China to critical acclaim from academics and the general public.

The second annual Samoa Observer Tusitala Short Story Competition in 2016, also attracted some outstanding entries. These original stories are set around the Pacific – in American Samoa, Australia, Fiji, Hawai’i, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Samoa, with one even further afield. “Stories of superstition and courage, migration and old age, tales set in the past, present, and future. While the plots are diverse, many have the same underlying message – we need our family and each other” said an early reviewer of the collection.

This second publication of the best stories from 2016 is entitled, ‘Only the Word Survives’. It has recently been published and is available from the Samoa Stationery and Books outlets in Samoa (Upolu and Savaii); American Samoa and Mangere, Auckland, New Zealand.

But from now, until November 10, we look forward with much excitement to receiving your entries for the 2017 competition. 

We know that everyone of us, has a story to tell.

For further information, please contact Marj Moore - [email protected]

By Aruna Lolani 30 September 2017, 12:00AM

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