The Sunday Times/Peters Fraser +Dunlop Young Writer Of The Year Award in association with The University Of Warwick

Picture the scene…..

A grim, hum-drum, run of the mill morning in the office.  The usual pleasantries have been exchanged, the debate about who’s turn it is to brew up rumbles on and the only thing I have to look forward to is my daily 3pm biscuit, or ‘threesies’ if you will.

That is until my iPhone pings with an exciting email (it didn’t actually ping, it was on silent, office rules).  So what did this ‘exciting email’ say Mand?, I hear you cry! well, sit your bottom down and lemme tell ya….

I had been asked to be on the shadow panel of The Sunday Times/Peters Fraser and Dunlop Young Writer Of The Year Award! I know right!? Me! Little old (fairly wet behind the ears) Book Blogger me!

After an initial hike in heart rate, the like of which my body hasn’t experienced since I attempted the 30 Day Shred, I checked, double checked and triple checked it wasn’t a hoax.  It wasn’t.  To be honest I’m still waiting for the email to arrived which either says ‘Gotcha!’ OR ‘Sorry we emailed the wrong gal!’……..but it hasn’t arrived yet so………it must be legit! I’m here now anyway and I’m staying!

So what’s it all about?  Well The Sunday Times/Peters Fraser and Dunlop Young Writer Of The Year Award (to give it it’s full tongue twisting title!) is awarded annually for a full-length published or self-published work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry, by an author aged 18-35 years.  The winner receives a smashing £5000! There are also three prizes of £500 each for runners up.

Previous winners of this prestigious award have been Sally Rooney for Conversations With Friends (last years winner), Max Porter for Grief Is The Thing With Feathers (which I adored!) Sarah Waters, Zadie Smith and many more….what an illustrious list!

The prize had become the definitive platform for young writing.  Working with a growing network of partners including the British Council, it provides a very important support system for the very best talent at work now.  The award is sponsored by literary agency Peters Fraser and Dunlop and created by The Sunday Times.  The award also runs in association with The University Of Warwick home to the Warwick Writing Programme who are offering a 10 week residency for whoever wins the award and a year long programme of digital support for the prize.

How fantastic does that all sound!

I will of course be in prestigious company on the panel with 4 talented bookbloggers:

Paul Cheney at Half Man Half Book

Susan Osborne at A Life In Books

Lucy Pearson at The Lit Edit 

Lizzi Risch at These Little Words

Here are our lovely little faces (well half of mine!):

I cannot wait for us to get together and bash it out over who we want our winner to be.

Of course you must now all go and follow those guys above IMMEDIATELY and check out what they’re saying too.

The official judging panel is made up of Andrew Holgate,  Literary Editor of The Sunday Times, along with authors Susan Hill (a total legend!) and Kamila Shamsie, winner of The Women’s Prize For Fiction 2018.

At the time of writing this post I cannot reveal which 4 amazing books and authors have been shortlisted. Suffice to say it’s a diverse and exciting list! However please do swing by the blog on Sunday 4th November when all will be revealed!…….Shameless tease!

I will of course be taking you all along with me for the ride and will be reviewing all four books here on the blog as well as revealing our choice of winner and the overall winner.

In all honesty I am ridiculously delighted and excited to be involved with this fabulous prize and I am naturally forever grateful to be a book blogger, spreading the book love wherever I go, like a little fairy sprinkling magic book glitter…….except fatter with a mortgage to pay.

I’ve rambled.  Please do check out all our deets here and please follow @youngwriteryear on twitter and catch up on all the latest news using the #youngwriterawardshadow hashtag.

You are duly dismissed, but I expect to see you all back here on Sunday 4th November for the big reveal! Don’t be late!

Other important dates to put in your diary are:

Blogger event held at The Groucho (fancy!) 17th November.  Bloggers are invited to this exclusive event at London’s Groucho Club, to meet the shortlisted authors and hear them read from their books. For more details and to get yourself on the list click here.

Shadow Panel Winner Announced 28th November.

Overall Winner announced 6th December.

In the meantime please do go and give me a follow on the old socials and lets have some bookish chat……(see what I did there). @Bookishchat (Twitter and IG)

Big bookish love.

See you soon! Oooohh exciting!

Bookish Chat xxx

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