Nature writing was once considered to be the rock and roll of literature. In the last few decades it has shown a steady decline. Like all extinctions, nature writing’s gradual disappearance represents a profound loss. Writing in this category is born out of love, respect, and awe of nature. It finds its subject during days of close observation of the beauty of the natural world. There is a pressing need to restore this literary art. The best way to do it is through stories.
Sincere efforts are being made through Kumaon Literary Festival to revive nature writing and through this form of literature bring the spotlight on critical environment issues. The festival recognises and awards the writers who write on nature and climate change.
Meghna Pant bagged the 2016 Fellows of Nature (FON) South Asia Short Story Award on Nature Writing for her story People of the Sun. FON Award is an initiative of the Kumaon Literary Festival, in partnership with the French Institute of India and Wildlife Trust of India, to revive nature writing.
“Nature writing was once considered to be the rock and roll of literature. In the last few decades, it has shown a steady decline. Like all extinctions, nature writing’s gradual disappearance represents a profound loss. FON is our little effort to revive this art,” said Sumant Batra, the founder of the Kumaon Literary Festival.
Asha Batra, the Founder of FON Award said, “writing about the close relationship between humankind and nature plays an important role in creating interest and building respect for it amongst book lovers and others. There is a pressing need to restore this literary art”.
The winner will be awarded a cash prize of rupees one lakh at an event to be hosted in New Delhi by the French Ambassador on October 11-13.
The first runner is Shabir Ahmad Mir from J&K and the second runner up is Vrinda Baliga from Hyderabad. Short stories of Richa Bhattari from Nepal and Amal Singh from Gaziabad made it to the FON shortlist of 5 top stories.
FON has been founded to build a community of nature writers and revive interest in nature writing and reading, and through this form of literature, build awareness and develop respect for nature, and eventually help in conservation. The initiatives of Fellows of Nature will help put the spotlight on critical environment issues through literature.