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Rowda Mohamud and Brandon Trotter win inaugural Ross and Davis Mitchell Prizes

Rowda Mohamud

Two authors have been honoured with the first-ever Ross and Davis Mitchell Prize for Faith in Literature, administered by think-tank Cardus for its Faith in Canada 150 initiative. Judges this year included Parliamentary poet laureate George Elliott Clarke and Pen Canada president Randy Boyagoda. Approximately 250 entrants submitted work for the new prize, which honours writing based on themes of faith and religion.

Somali-born, Ontario-based poet Rowda Mohamud won in the poetry category for her collection Please Find Yourself a Space, while Calgary writer and director Brandon Trotter won in the short-fiction category for his story “Saint 148.” Both authors received a $10,000 prize at an Oct. 30 reception at Toronto’s Aga Khan Museum.

Two runners-up, poet Shane Nielson (for Loss Sonnets) and writer-editor Susan Fish (for “Easter Water”), each took home $2,500. Works by the recipients and finalists will be anthologized in 2018.