We are delighted to announce the First Novel Award 2020 Longlist. This year’s judges are literary agents Caroline Wood and Carrie Plitt from Felicity Bryan Agency and best selling author, Anna Hope (Expectation, The Ballroom, Wake). Prizes for the winners include agent introductions as well as cash and an editorial report. The Award is given to unpublished writers without representation.
We received more than 960 entries from writers throughout the UK and as far afield as Australia, New Zealand, the US and Europe. Entries were across all genres including YA, contemporary fiction, magical realism, literary fiction, historical, psychological, crime and comedy.
The cast of this year’s longlisted novels come in all shapes and forms and from all walks of life: an Anabaptist martyr distributing forbidden bibles from under her skirts; a young nun in the French Resistance, a Jamaican farmer sent to the Western front during World War 1, a translator who talks to a dead spider named Gladys, a Bosnian boy and his disabled brother who makes a living diving off bridges, a baby found in a box, a former slave hunting a sadistic killer in the backstreets of Bristol as well as Bulgarian spys living in Wales.
The Shortlist will be announced on July 27. Those writers shortlisted will be asked to submit an additional 15,000 words to their original 5,000 word opening extract.
The names of writers on the Longlist will be announced along with the winners on September 30. In the meantime, many congratulations to the authors of the following 20 exceptional titles:
|A Secret Life|
|A Stone in Her Hand|
|Bridge over the Neretva|
|He Doesn’t Live Here Anymore|
|The Baby in the Box|
|The Clay Wife|
|The Curation of Eamonn O’Reilly|
|The World According to Joan|
|Then A Starling|
|Those Who Come This Way|