Unconditional love, mysticism, consciousness and death feature in this year’s Ashton Wylie Mind Body Spirit Literary Awards finalist works, written by New Zealanders from all walks of life and from all over the country.
The Awards’ judges’ convenor, Adonia Wylie, says it is always surprising the depth and breadth of writing in this specialised genre, which varies hugely year-on-year.
“The Unpublished Manuscript finalists in particular, are extraordinary. Ellaine Millard talks of mystical faith and information theory, Terence Green presents a scholarly and extensively researched work demonstrating the interconnectedness of all things, Hugh Major’s manuscript shimmers with a reverence for the mysterious life that seethes beneath the oceans’ surface and makes frequent reference to how our own lives and challenges have similarities to the complexities of underwater existence, Caryl Haley tackles that most difficult experience – the witnessing of a startling and profound spiritual phenomenon and Jeremy Cole offers a convincing argument for divine laziness in his profound, original and exemplary work.
“We face a considerable task in selecting a winner from such a strong line-up. “
There are ten finalists, five in each of the two categories - for published works and unpublished manuscripts. Each category winner receives a $10,000 prize.
The 2017 Mind Body Spirit Literary Awards Unpublished Manuscript category finalists are:
- Paekakariki-based historian and lecturer,Terence Green’s Wisdom's Lament: A History of God and Science in the Modern Age
- Whangapararoa-based retired teacher, Caryl Haley’s The Splendour of Light
- Matakana-based English and Drama teacher, Hugh Major’s Out of the Mouths of Fishes
- Plimmerton-based web developer,Jeremy Cole’s Divine Laziness: The Art of Living Effortlessly
- Whakatane-based holistic healer Ellaine Millard’s A New Mystic's Teaching & Testimony on Holistic Faith: Integrated Healing of Body, Soul & Spirit through Information Theory
Ms Wylie says this year’s Book category finalists are deeply personal works, each with powerful messages, to be read slowly and returned to over and over again.
“These published works are thought provoking and contain much wisdom. We are delighted to see 2014 Manuscript category finalist Cathryn Monro in this year’s Book category and encourage all unpublished finalists to persevere to publication stage.”
The 2017 Ashton Wylie Mind Body Spirit Literary Awards Book Category finalists are:
- Wellington writer, artist, educator and mother Cathryn Monro’s Spilt Milk Yoga: A Guided Self-inquiry to Finding Your Own Wisdom, Joy and Purpose Through Motherhood (Familius)
- Muriwai Beach-based writer Emma Farry’s Beloved (Be Loved Press)
- North Shore, Auckland writer and coach Stephanie Harris’ Death Expands Us: An Honest Account of Grief and How to Rise Above It (Lion Crest Publishing)
- Wellington social entrepreneur Scottie Reeve’s Twenty-One Elephants: Leaving Religion for the Reckless Way of Jesus (Scottie Reeve)
- West Auckland Sangeeta Sharma’s Reality in Reflection: a Journey Towards Holistic Living (Blurb Inc)
The awards are unique in the country for their encouragement of writing in the mind, body, spirit genre. The awards were established in 1999 thanks to a bequest from the late businessman, Ashton Wylie.
The winners will be announced at a ceremony at The Ashton Wylie Charitable Trust’s own venue, Hopetoun Alpha in Auckland on Friday 18 August, 2017.