I’m back from the Outdoor Writers & Photographers Guild (OWPG) annual AGM weekend. To be fair I didn’t have to travel too far, as it was just up the road in the north Lakes, in the Newlands valley near Keswick. The event culminated in the Awards for Excellence ceremony, and I was very fortunate to be nominated in both the guidebook and technical feature categories.
It was all very overwhelming to win the award for Best Guidebook, for my Chamonix trail running book, which was published by Cicerone. The judges wrote “Genuinely innovative in its choice of subject, and well written, passionate and authoritative”. Great news that this project was recognised, and a real endorsement to Cicerone for having the confidence to back me in producing this.
In the category of Technical Feature award, I was Highly Commended for my article ‘Trail Running in the Alps’, which appeared in edition 73 of Trek & Mountain magazine. It was great to be awarded this certificate by Joe Williams from Cicerone, as he’s been closely involved in my two mountain running guidebooks to date, and is a very highly accomplished runner himself.
So, a very successful weekend, but I left completely humbled. It was bizarre meeting so many authors who are household names in the outdoor press. Some of the entries, such as the photography award won by Chris Howes for his caving portfolio, were amazing.
Anyway the upshot is that I left the awards a very happy man, and really motivated with my outdoor writing. Next year it’ll be the turn of my latest publication, ‘Trail and Fell Running in the Lake District‘ to be put through its paces against the cream of the crop! It’s funny that the net effect of being recognised like this, is to feel spurred on and greater pressure, to produce better in the future.
Further details about the 2017 award winners will soon be released on the OWPG website, and in the meantime here is a press release on the judges comments. All that’s left for me to do is say a big thanks to the team at Cicerone for all your help and support, and to put those certificates on the wall to be a constant reminder that the clock is still ticking, and to get writing the next title…