The prize-giving ceremony of the 20th Baihua Literature Awards was held in Tianjin on Tuesday. Thirty-nine works received awards in seven categories, including the awards for short stories, novellas, novels, prose, science fiction and online literature.
In addition, 18 editors from literary journals such as People's Literature, Harvest, October, Chinese Writers, and Shanghai Literature received the Editor's Award, while 30 readers from both China and abroad received the Reader's Award.
In his speech, Chinese literature professor at the University of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and representative of the judging panel, Liu Daxian, said, "The Baihua Literature Awards, through continuous practice, has established itself as a shining brand in contemporary Chinese literature. Here, we can witness the contemporary journey of Chinese literature, its achievements, and dynamic evolution."
Receiving the novella award for Ai De Chuan Liu Bu Xi (The Endless Flow of Love), Zhang Wei said, "I have always written about love, and even when writing about hate, it ultimately serves to express love more deeply. Love is everywhere: between people and the mountains, the earth, between people and nature, and between people and animals. Without love, life is not worth cherishing. People living in this world are on a journey of love — a continuous and unending flow."
Ren Qing won the sci-fi award for Laizi Jinweilai De Zidan (Bullets from the Near Future). "This is the third time the Baihua Literature Awards has presented the sci-fi award. As a creator of science fiction, I am delighted to see that it has become a hot topic in literature and will undoubtedly become an important part of contemporary Chinese literature's journey into the future," he said.
Lin Sen, representative of the award-winning editors and the editor-in-chief of Frontiers journal, said: "I have been engaged in journal editing for more than 15 years, and I deeply understand that the editors' livelihood has not been good in recent years. They need to put their whole heart into their work but only receive minimal professional rewards and face pressures from all sides.
"The Baihua Literature Awards allows editors to also step onto the stage, stand in the spotlight, and provides editors with enough professional glory, which is particularly moving."
As the first literary award in China to be selected by readers, the Baihua Literature Awards is known as a "broad-spectrum public opinion test" of contemporary Chinese literature.
For 40 years, the award has consistently focused on people, keeping pace with the times and launching a large number of works beloved by readers. These include Zhang Chengzhi's Beifang De He (Rivers in the North), Feng Jicai's Shenbian (The Magical Whip), Ah Cheng's The King of Children, Chi Li's Fannao Rensheng (Annoying Life), Su Tong's Raise the Red Lantern, and Yu Hua's To Live.
The Baihua Literature Awards, formerly known as the Baihua Awards, is held once every two years. Over four decades, the Baihua Awards has continuously expanded its scope and areas of interest. In 2015, it added the prose award and became the Baihua Literature Awards. In 2019, the sci-fi award was introduced. This year, the online literature award was also added.