|Photo: Leif Norman / Courtesy of the Manitoba Writer's Guild||
Author: Di Brandt, Winnipeg, MB
What a great honour it is to present the Manitoba Book Awards Lifetime Achievement Award to David Arnason, the man who, above all others, has led and nurtured and fed the creation of a home-grown Manitoba literature right here in Winnipeg, over the past half century, that began with a small handful of local wannabes in the 1970s and grew under his benevolent watch, in the space of a few short decades, to become a world class oeuvre, renowned and celebrated the world over: the grand and lovely collective achievement we are lucky to be part of and celebrating here once again today.
David Arnason made this extraordinary literary blossoming possible with his own gorgeous, larger-than-life blend of excellence, humour, wit, appreciation, generosity, entrepreneurial foresight, hard work, kind mentorship, and canny ability to recognize the possibilities of the “not yet,” and how to bring them into being in his own writing, and thinking, and the creative writing of our province and country generally.
David Arnason’s literary achievements make up a formidable, star-studded CV. . . .