Earlier this year, James Atlee was awarded the 2017 if:book New Media Writing Prize for The Cartographer’s Confession in a ceremony at Bournemouth University. In their eighth year, the New Media Writing Prizes routinely showcase an exciting array of innovative, interactive, immersive writing.

As in past years, there was also a Canadian connection with Natasha Nunn, a Master’s of Library and Information Sciences student at the University Alberta, winning the Unicorn Student Prize for her piece Mary Rose.

Both prizes look for compelling “born digital” storytelling – fiction  or non-fiction – written specifically for delivery and reading/viewing on a PC or Mac, the web, or a hand-held device such as an iPad or mobile phone.

Much as we have been seen in our preliminary English 335 readings this term, the New Media Writing nominees and winners use a variety of tools, including word processors, DV cameras, social networking tools (i.e. Twitter), mobile phone/s,  scanners, Augmented Reality software . . .

For any students now inspired to create their own works in anticipation of the 2018 New Media Writing Prize, you may want to make note of what the judges are looking in the prize-winning entries:

1.  Innovative use of new (digital) media/transmedia to create an engaging, satisfying narrative, or poem, or as-yet-unspecified form. Fiction or non-fiction.

2.  Ease of accessibility for the reader/viewer.

3.  Effective use of interactive elements.

4.  A great example of how new media can do things traditional media can’t.

5.  The potential to reach out to a wide audience (i.e. not just specialist interest groups).