The Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award Competition Committee has finished its deliberations and has reached a decision about the 2013 award. Karen Propp, the author of Freestyle, will receive the 2013 Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award at the AJL Conference in June.
Ms Propp is an author, editor and writing coach from Cambridge, MA.
Freestyle is based on the true story of champion swimmer Judith Deutsch and the Viennese Hakoah swim team of the 1930s, familiar to some from the documentary film Watermarks. Despite being selected by Austria to swim in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Deutsch and her teammates boycotted the Olympics to protest the treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany.
The novel covers two years in the life of Elly Hirsch, Propp’s fictional incarnation of Deutsch. The Award committee felt that Freestyle with its strong sense of history, sympathetic characters, and little known story, would appeal to a wide audience and epitomize the ideals of Sydney Taylor’s All of a Kind Family series. Freestyle looks at the years of the Holocaust with a unique light.
In addition to a cash award, Ms Propp will have her manuscript read by a professional literary agent.
Under the new Award schedule, submissions for the 2014 will be accepted until September 30, 2013.