One of the flagship projects of Commonwealth Writers, the Commonwealth Short Story Prize is now open for entries, with an international judging panel comprising judges from each of the five Commonwealth regions: Zukiswa Wanner (Africa); Mahesh Rao (Asia); Jacqueline Baker (Canada and Europe), Jacob Ross (Caribbean) and Vilsoni Hereniko (Pacific).
The chair of this year’s panel is the novelist Kamila Shamsie, who is the author of six novels, including Burnt Shadows, which has been translated into more than 20 languages and was shortlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction, and A God in Every Stone which was shortlisted for the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction.
“One of the pleasures of short stories is the potential for encountering both breadth and concentrated depth of writing over the space of just a few stories. In the case of the Commonwealth Short Story Prize, the geographic range of the entrants, as well as the prize's track record of attracting extraordinary writing, turns that potential into near-certainty.” Kamila Shamsie, Chair, 2017 Commonwealth Short Story Prize
The prize is for the best piece of unpublished short fiction. Entries translated into English from other languages are also eligible. Writers from across the Commonwealth can enter their stories online at here.
“As well as the scope of the Prize to unearth truly ‘less heard’ voices, it’s also one of only a handful of international prizes open to unpublished writers, as well as published writers, with £15,000 in prize money. And we believe that it’s the only major international prize which invites writers to enter in languages other than English – Bengali, Portuguese, Samoan and Swahili this year.” Lucy Hannah, Programme Manager, Commonwealth WritersCommonwealth Writers is delighted to continue its partnership with Granta Magazine to give the overall and regional winners of the 2017 Commonwealth Short Story Prize the opportunity to have their story edited and published by Granta online.
________________________________________________Notes to Editors
- The Commonwealth Short Story Prize is part of Commonwealth Writers, the cultural programme of the Commonwealth Foundation. It is awarded for the best piece of unpublished short fiction (2000-5000 words). Regional winners receive £2,500 and the Overall Winner receives £5,000. Short stories translated into English from other languages are also eligible. Translators receive additional prize money.
- Commonwealth Writers develops and connects writers across the world. It believes that well-told stories can help people make sense of events, engage with others, and take action to bring about change. Responsive and proactive, it is committed to tackling the challenges faced by writers in different regions and working with local and international partners to identify and deliver projects. Its activities take place in Commonwealth countries, but its community is global.www.commonwealthwriters.org
- Commonwealth Foundation is a development organisation with an international remit and reach, uniquely situated at the interface between government and civil society. It develops the capacity of civil society to act together and learn from each other to engage with the institutions that shape people’s lives. It strives for more effective, responsive and accountable governance with civil society participation, which contributes to improved development outcomes.www.commonwealthfoundation.com
- Granta is a quarterly literary magazine of new writing. Published in book format, each issue includes stories, essays, memoir, poetry and art centred around a theme. Throughout its long history, Granta has published the most significant writers of our time featuring work by writers including Julian Barnes, Edwidge Danticat, Kazuo Ishiguro, Salman Rushdie, Santiago Roncagliolo, David Mitchell, Lorrie Moore, Zadie Smith, Jeanette Winterson and more. In recent years, the magazine has expanded to include foreign editions – in Spain, Italy, Brazil, Norway, China, Finland, Sweden, Portugal and Bulgaria. www.granta.com