The 14th of April commemorated the launch of the 6th issue of Particle, an online magazine run by the School Of English that publishes the literary works of Nottingham students from all three campuses. Since this issue did not have a theme, writers were free to write according to their own inspirations.
After a brief introduction of by Essays & Review Student Editor Sara Samir Foad Albadran and a reading of the issue’s ‘Letter from the Editor‘ by Essays & Reviews Student Editor Kelvin Wong, UNMC students who had poems and stories published in Particle’s Issue 6 were invited to read their submissions.
Eric Chow (alias Ian E.C.) read his story “Ouranós“, followed by Yehezkiel Faoma reading an extract of “Utopia“, a creative nonfiction entry that evoked the essence of his hometown, Jakarta. He was followed by Suzanne Ong, who read her poem “Birthday Song”, by Jonathan Sim, who read his poem “at the end of a day” and by Puteri Yasmin Suraya, who read her poem “A Study on Celestial Bodies“.
After the readings, Fiction and Creative Nonfiction Student Editor Augustine Chay introduced the recently-introduced Cascade Aspiring Writers Contest, which is financially supported by the Cascade Grant. Cascade has funded the prize money for the contest, providing RM 100 to the best entries in all five categories (Creative Non-Fiction, Essays, Fiction, Poetry and Reviews) for five years. Augustine hoped that the award would help promote the literary arts in Malaysia, and noted that there were presently two other existing online literary journals in Malaysia: Anak Sastra and Asiatic.
Dr. Derek Irwin was then was called up to present the awards to the winners of this year’s Cascade Aspiring Contest Winners. “Vietnamese Bride“, a story by Zhang Yanting (a student from the Ningbo campus) won the prize for fiction. The editors noted that the story was narrated in simple prose, but highlighted the complex issue of bride kidnapping in rural China.
Yehezkiel Faoma won the prizes for the Creative Non-Fiction (“Utopia“) and Review (“On the Road: A Review“) categories, while Jonathan Sim won the Poetry prize for “at the end of a day“. Finally, Lim Hui Ee, who also contributed the cover image of Issue 6, won the Essay prize for “Leadership 101: Be a Volunteer“.
To wrap up the launch, the final year Particle editors were given some a token of appreciation before they graduated: Sarah Yee (web editor), Augustine Chay (fiction & creative nonfiction editor), Norazlin Khalit (poetry editor) and Amanda Jacob (poetry editor).
By Geethanjali Mahendran