Bergstrom Studio Awards Writing Grant to Marissa Mireles Hinds
It is with great pleasure that I’m able to share with you today that we’ve awarded our £6000 grant to Marissa Mireles Hinds who is working on her first novel, Sucre. A blend of magic realism and historical fiction, the novel will explore themes of (anti)colonialism, black history, fear of motherhood, Caribbean and African spiritualism, family and identity.
Sucre is a multi-generational saga about the family of Ahan Vita, a fourteen-year-old girl haunted by secrets, magic and a generational curse. During the end of the 18th century, in a small village called Sarakoum, Ahan lives hidden from a coven of witches known as "The Othermen” - colonists and the Portuguese papacy - by her grandmother’s magic and for over fifteen years no one can find it except those who already know where to look.
Marissa is a London-based Afro-Latinx and Caribbean American poet, filmmaker, writer, and founder of film and music collective creative until death and co-founder of babes in development – a safe ideation and growth incubator for black women and non-binary writers, filmmakers and creatives. Her writing has also previously been shortlisted for the RSL Sky Arts Award.
I really want to first thank those businesses and individuals who have helped us fund this grant, without them it would never have been possible:
We received hundreds of applications and the standard of submissions was incredibly high. So if you applied, thank you so much, we really enjoyed reading your material.
Marissa told me: "I want to thank everyone who contributed to the grant, the studio and Abigail and Megan for their consideration and for believing in me and the project. I have been working on Sucre over the course of the last ten years; fitting it between my work and my personal life. This grant will allow me to continue my investigations into important historical elements of the slave trade, Caribbean slave narratives and Haitian Revolution on which the historical nature of the book is based, as well as my research into physics, religion, fables and spirituality. With this grant I will be able to focus the first half of next year solely on finishing my novel and travelling to important sites in the Caribbean which will have a great impact on the work.”
As I’ve written before, I know how hard it is to write a book and I know first-hand the sacrifices it takes. To be in a position to support and platform an aspiring novelist brings me so much joy. Thank you so much for being a part of this community and please join me in congratulating Marissa.
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