Got in from work yesterday to find my twitter feed full of lovely people congratulating me for making this year’s Scott Prize shortlist. For those of you unfamiliar with the Scott Prize, it’s an international annual prize given to debut collections of short fiction. Yes, that’s right, a prize designed to celebrate two of my favourite things, new writers and short fiction, and it’s run by the brilliant Salt Publishing.
Longtime readers of this blog will know how much I have enjoyed Salt’s short fiction collections over the last few years. It is fantastic to have made the shortlist. And what a list it is:
- Alistair Daniel (UK) – Marriage à la Mode
- April L. Ford (USA) – The Poor Children
- Jane Hammons (USA) – A Place Called Beautiful
- Jenny Holden (UK) – Flexitime
- Hilary Hughes (UK) – Word Salad
- Kirsty Logan (UK) – The Rental Heart & Other Fairytales
- Dan Powell (UK) – Looking Out of Broken Windows
- Leone Ross (UK) – Lipstick, Lighters, Pens & Porn
- Colette Sartor (USA) – Kinship, Friendship, and Other Afflictions
- Peter Vilbig (USA) – Signal Boom Signal Crash
- Jill Widner (USA) – A Green Raft on a Muddy Swell
I am both amazed to have my work sitting alongside such great new writers and not a little nervous. After award ceremonies, judges often say that a prize could have gone to any one of the shortlisted writers and this list looks to be no exception. Whatever the result, one thing is for sure, there will be yet another brilliant collection on its way from Salt later this year, the cover bearing the words ‘Winner of the Scott Prize.’ You only have to look at the list of previous winners of the prize to be sure of that: Carys Bray, Rob Roensch, Andrea Ashworth, Cassandra Parkin, Jonathon Pinnock, Patrick Holland, David Mullins, Susannah Rickards and Tom Vowler.
I really do wish each and everyone of my fellow shortlistees the best for the final judging. I can’t wait to read the other ten collections. After all, because of this prize there are that many more new and exciting short fiction collections in the world. How cool is that.