A social entrepreneur and a web developer are the winners of the 2017 Ashton Wylie Mind Body Spirit Literary Awards, with works announced this evening by the judges’ convenor, Adonia Wylie, as ‘accessible and profound.’
Wellington’s Scottie Reeve, who founded Georgia’s and Stories, two container cafes which offer employment to young people, won the Book category for 21-Elephants: Leaving Religion for the Reckless way of Jesus.
Ms Wylie says Scottie Reeve is only thirty-one, yet has lived a full life and had his share of troubles. His aim through this book and his way of life, is to make a difference.
“He rails against the unfulfilled promises of living in the Western world with its commercial emphasis and the rapaciousness of society yet somewhat ironically brings entrepreneurial skills to his spirituality. He runs social enterprises giving work to young people in need and has set up a community with people of like-mind who provide food and comfort for the less fortunate. It is a life after the style of St Francis of Assisi – personal denial for the greater good, a courageous way to live a sacred, spiritual life.
“This book would be inspirational to anyone who values the life of the spirit.”
Ms Wylie says Jeremy Cole has the knack of making even his writing seem effortless as if to demonstrate that yes, being divinely lazy is a good way to live.
“His work’s original concept and title are a refreshing counterpoint for prevailing current wisdom that insists the only life worth living must be driven by goals and purpose.
“It is an original, profound and exemplary work.”
The judging panel comprising of Ashton Wylie trustee, Adonia Wylie, author and broadcaster Lindsay Dawson and writer Joan Rosier-Jones were unanimous in their overall choice of the winning works, which took the honours from a total of 10 finalists.
Each category winner received a $10,000 prize.
Awards director, Tim Eddington, says “the Awards always attract an eclectic and impressive body of work by New Zealanders writing in the genre. We very much hope that the calibre of the Unpublished Manuscript winners and their recognition with these awards will facilitate their publication.”
The Awards are unique in New Zealand for their encouragement of writing in the mind, body, spirit genre.
The 2017 Ashton Wylie Mind Body Spirit Literary Awards winners (in order) are:
Scottie Reeve 21-Elephants: Leaving Religion for the Reckless Way of Jesus
Cathryn Monro Spilt Milk Yoga: A Guided Self-inquiry to Finding Your Own Wisdom, Joy and Purpose Through Motherhood (Familius)
Stephanie Harris Death Expands Us: An Honest Account of Grief and How to Rise Above It (Lion Crest Publishing)
Emma Farry Beloved (Be Loved Press)
Sangeeta Sharma Reality in Reflection: a Journey Towards Holistic Living (Blurb Inc)
UNPUBLISHED MANUSCRIPT CATEGORY
Jeremy Cole Divine Laziness: The art of living effortlessly
Hugh Major Out of the Mouths of Fishes
Terence Green Wisdom’s Lament: A History of God and Science in the Modern Age
Ellaine Millard A New Mystic’s Teaching & Testimony on Holistic Faith: Integrated Healing of Body, Soul & Spirit through Information Theory
Caryl Haley The Splendour of light