A book prize I love following is The Sunday Times/Peters Fraser & Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award. This is an award which came back with gusto last year after being on hiatus since 2009. Only writers who are 35 years or younger are eligible. It’s wonderful to see promising young writers encouraged and supported in this way. Not only does the winner receive an award of £5000 but the runners-up also receive £500 each – a nice addition which means it’s not all or nothing for the writers being recognized. The shortlist for the 2015 prize was so interesting and diverse with the winner being Sarah Howe who wrote the beautiful book of poetry “Loop of Jade”. This award straddles multiple genres considering fiction, non-fiction and poetry, but I think it’s particularly nice that a poet was recognized for such a prestigious prize. Past winners have included great literary stars including Adam Foulds, Zadie Smith, Sarah Waters, Caryl Phillips and Helen Simpson.
So I'm delighted that I've been invited to join an official shadow panel for this year’s prize alongside great book bloggers Naomi from TheWritesofWomen, Kim from ReadingMatters, Simon from SavidgeReads and Charlie from TheWormHole. When the shortlist for this year’s prize is announced we’ll be reading all the books on it and meeting to discuss them to decide our own winner. This will be announced as a kind of fan favourite proceeding the announcement of the actual winner. I’ll be so excited to join in as having detailed discussions and debates about books is what I love most!
The shortlist will be announced on November 6th.
The winner will be announced on December 9th at a ceremony at the beautiful London Library – this is a library I particularly love. Back in May I wrote about a special publication “On Reading, Writing and Living with Books” which came out as part of the library's 175th anniversary.
Stay tuned to find out what authors are shortlisted for this year’s award and our discussions about the books. I hope you’ll join in reading them with us!