Cape Town writer Mary Watson has been awarded the prestigious Caine Prize for African writing for her short story Jungfrau about social relationships in post-apartheid South Africa. The tale, told from a childs point of view, is part of a collection of stories published under the title Moss in 2004.
31-year-old Watson hopes the 10,000 prize will help her on her way to becoming an established writer. My ambition is to one day focus on writing fulltime and hopefully this is a step in that direction, she told the BBCs Focus on Africa programme. She currently lectures in film studies at the University of Cape Town and is working on her first novel as well as on a collaborative novel with other South African writers.
Instituted in 2000, this year the Caine prize which is often referred to as the Africa Booker received 110 entries from 21 African countries. Four of the five shortlisted candidates were women.