The AOI is delighted to support the Faber Andlyn Prize for undiscovered BAME writers and illustrators.

The first prize for illustration was awarded jointly to Sarah Christou and Simji Park with a Special Commendation has gone to María José Rodríguez Cano (María Coco) and Takae Mizutani.

Sarah Christou has an MA in Screenwriting and attended the Children’s Book Illustration summer school at Anglia Ruskin University. Sarah has just completed the Faber Academy’s Writing A Novel course.

Simji Park is a freelance illustrator and animator from South Korea. She completed an MA in Animation from the Royal College of Art in 2017.

The judges, Leah Thaxton, Faber Publisher and the Andlyn Agency’s Davinia Andrew-Lynch, were joined by guest judges author Polly Ho-Yen (The Boy in the Tower), illustrator John Aggs (Noughts and Crosses Graphic Novel) and Margaret Casely-Hayford CBE, alongside Faber Creative Director, Donna Payne and Children’s Art Director, Emma Eldridge.

In addition to the prize money illustrators receive an AOI membership, a year of mentoring plus a selection of Faber books. BookTrust Represents will be offering support and promotion to all the awardees over the next 12 months. This includes opportunities to shadow already established authors and illustrators on school visits, BookTrust Represents training workshop.

AOIs CEO Ren Renwick says: It is such a privilege to be part of this award, and support some breathtaking new talent take flight.  The fact there are two winners this year, speaks to the talent that there is.  The FAB award is a wonderful investment in unearthing and profiling otherwise hidden BAME talent.

Shortlistees in both categories are: Tara Marron, Zoe Logan, Sheraz Arif, Sumana Seeboruth, Olivia Duchess and Muj Shah. In addition, Chiu-hsuan Huang, Sunita Chawdhary, Adrianne Rutherford, Sital Gorasia Chapman, Davina Tijani, Tola Okogwu, Erica Jo Kingsley and Mina Patria were commended for their entries.

Winning this award has been a career catalyst for previous winners with multiple book deals, and, for Poonam Mistry,  inclusion in the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal for You’re Safe With Me.

26th September 2019

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