Six candidates were distinguished by the 2021 Jury. A seventh team received special recognition from the competition organizers. Each work can be read entirely in its original language.

En attendant Cléo GRAND PRIZE Short novel/Scenario

CASES Anne-Laure

The short story En attendant Cléo takes us to the day of May 21, 2105, in a Paris emptied of its cars, its pollution, its incessant noise. It's very hot, but it's good to live there. Vertical farms, high-altitude forests on top of buildings, artificial lakes to collect wastewater, all live with new technologies, drones and high-speed transportation. As the hours go by, we follow Auguste, we discover his daily life. Auguste is waiting for Cléo. Will she join him or will she prefer to escape to new horizons?

En attendant Cléo, whose title is reminiscent of Beckett's Godot, is a universal story about love and waiting, and makes us reflect on what makes happiness... which is not always to be found elsewhere.

The writing style in "En attendant Cléo" is very fresh and very direct. We don’t really have a lot of information about this relationship, just that it is a man waiting and clearly longing to meet with this woman. But what I find really interesting is the fact that maybe the world, the city, the planet that the story is depicting, is very different from what we live today, but despite all these changes we care a lot about what is happening there. Even if it’s not very dramatic, we really identify with this man. And it shows us that somehow, no matter how much things can change, and everyday life can be different, there is still something that is going to connect us with the people who will live in this new world in the future.  Cristian Jiménez
The text presents us with a future world, but it does not describe it in a way too heavy or too detailed. It makes us feel it, touch it, guess it through the actions of the characters, especially the main character. And the second quality is to have introduced a form of melancholy within this positive and happy future. To have said that even if the world changes, even if the social and political intentions change, even if the great climatic or other difficulties that we face today are overcome, human feelings will not change that much. And that the expectation of love, fear, a form of nostalgia or melancholy will always be there. And I think that's what gives this story its value, it really takes us into a future that we believe in, because it remains a human future, a future where not everything is rosy. Because we know that, whatever innovations we may introduce, the worst utopia would be that of obligatory happiness for all. For that would be the extinction of those feelings, those dreams, those fantasies, which make the value of our lives.  Benoît Peeters
En attendant Cléo" is a simple but yet very touching story. It is about a man who is waiting for the woman he loves. It is not a new story, we have heard this story before, but it makes it very eternal and universal, and that is very touching for everybody I guess. The story also depicts a positive future, which is set in Paris in 2105. And what makes it positive is that though we have seemed to have adapted to climate change thanks to new technologies and thanks to various social upheavals, and though we also have an possibility to migrate, to flee, to explore a new land, there is a possibility also in the story that we might actually like to stay. And in the end it is a story that talks about what should be changed in the future but also what will stay the same for us in the future as a humanity, as a mankind.  Sophie Tran
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