Christina Tyson NZ Panellist, Chair of the Awards Commission
An international young writer 'Awards Commission' has been established to look afresh at the 'awards' structure for 2018 and onwards and the chair is Major Christina Tyson the Salvation Army Media Unit head.
The Press Service International young writer program with Christian Today Australia and Christian Today New Zealand has an 'awards' process whereby the top young writer in any given year receives the Basil Sellers Award.
There are four sets of six Panellists who mark the young writer articles for these awards – Australia, New Zealand, Internationals and Sport.
In April the Australian Panellists discussed the nature of the award deliberations and out of those discussions an Awards Commission group will meet by Email in the second half of this year to recommend an ‘awards policy’ for 2018 onwards.
This small Awards Commission will be chaired by Christina Tyson NZ Panellist (NZ Salvation Army Media Unit head). The aim is to have Awards Commission made up of Panellists and long-term young writers from New Zealand, Australia, the Internationals and Sport.
Aust 1st - $1000
Aust 2nd - $500
Theology - $500
New Zealand Awards
NZ 1st - $1000
NZ 2nd - $500
NZ Theology - $500
Sport - (only 5 sport writers) – Certificate
Internationals - (overseas - a Certificate)
A number of books are given for various other awards
Sports writer Josh Hinds is on the Awards Commission
Award Commission 'ideas'
Already some brain storming ideas have come to the fore for this Awards Commission to consider.
The Panellist marking period are the first 6 months of each year in which each young writer has five articles published for marking. Currently all the articles get marked and the program's statistician collates those scores until the end of the 5th Cycle - upon which the winners are determined.
Already two ideas in this brainstorming on the table – The first is marking only the 3 best of the 5 articles of each young writer.
Another is the ARPA model (Australasian Religious Press Association) whereby each professional (or media organisation) submits what they consider their 'best' article. That one article is marked by the Panellists.
NZ Panellist Bishop Brian Carrell sent the following on these two models -
“The answer may rest on what the aim of the competition is - to select the best writer or the best written article. If it is the former, option 1 would fit best because it takes into account the overall quality of a writer's contributions; if it is the latter, option 2 would seem best as it shows the heights a writer is able to achieve when pushed.”
NZ Panellist Bishop Brian Carrell
The Christian Today program recognises this is a small commitment, one article every 5 weeks.
Many young people are at University with assignments coming out their ears, and / or involved with youth leadership or youth groups, starting a career, involved with a relationship, numbers have young families …. a thousand different things … we realised there needed to be some 'give and take'.
The issue is that the full component of 5 articles is problematic due to time commitments, redrafting previous articles, and the like. The current policy relaxes the original strict rules, such as being late with an article. This adjustment has worked well 2013-17 (five years).
The Awards Commission for 2018 is to look afresh at this.
Christina Tyson – Wellington, New Zealand
Dr Deidre Tronson - Panellist, Sydney
Russell Modlin – WBA Board, Sunshine Coast
Josh Hinds – sports writer, Qld
Irenie How – Christchurch, Kiwi editor
Laura Veloso – Panellist, Sydney
Nathanael Yates – Panellist, Perth
Daniel and Danielle Stott – Panellists, Melbourne
Sam Gillespie – young writer, Sydney
Cheryl McGrath – young writer, Melbourne
Mr Basil Sellers and Dr Mark Tronson - who raise the funding for the young writer awards
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html