Nuzhat wins 2022 Rachel Funari Prize for Fiction
Zarin Nuzhat is the winner of the 2022 Rachel Funari Prize for Fiction for her story ‘Sanjida Learns to Drive’.
Judges Julie Koh, Melissa Manning and Sonia Orchard said the story, which explores the challenges a migrant woman faces when she tries to eke out her identity, freedom and dreams in a new country, was ‘a well-rendered story with strong scenes, tightly executed tension, and a sharp-focus insight into the protagonist’s emotional landscape’.
Nuzhat receives $1000 cash prize, a 12-month membership to the Queensland Writers Centre, and a book pack from the award’s sponsors. ‘Sanjida Learns to Drive’ will also be published on Lip magazine’s website, alongside second-place runner-up Claire Alcock’s story ‘The Reliquary’ and third-place runner-up Zeynab Gamieldien’s ‘The Cleaner’. The judges highly commended Liz Walkenhorst’s story ‘Aftermath’.
Chosen from a shortlist of 11 announced earlier this month, the winner was announced at the Emerging Writers’ Festival’s ‘Amazing Babes’ event on Monday, 20 June.
In its 10th year, the prize is open to women, female-identifying and non-binary writers, and is held in honour of Lip’s founding editor, the late Rachel Funari. Writers were invited to submit up to 2000 words of unpublished and unperformed fiction that engaged with the theme ‘aftermath’.
Last year’s winner was Keshe Chow for her story ‘Lady Finger’.