UBC creative writing alumna Gina Leola Woolsey was successful at the CBC Radio Literary Awards on March 24, nabbing the first prize for creative nonfiction with her story, My Best Friend.
My Best Friend narrates thirty-five years of Woolsey’s relationship with her drug-addicted brother. Described by the award jury as “an unflinching and poignant account of the burdens and comforts of family, and the shifts of balance between siblings”, the tale recounts Woolsey’s interactions with her brother from their troubled childhood to the grim reality of his addictions.
Woolsey is currently working on a full-length memoir about her childhood years shuttling between estranged parents along with her brother.
One of Canada’s most competitive and prestigious awards to writers, the awards receive approximately 5,000 entries each year. Winners of the CBC Literary Awards are determined by a peer review process. This year, two awards were presented in the categories of creative nonfiction, poetry and the short story; first prize is $6,000 and second prize is $4,000.