News roundup: awards, free short stories, Sarah Waters novel on the distant horizon, and love actually

15 Sep

So, in my best BBC accent, here is the news:

POLARIpinkLARGEThe short list for the Polari Prize has been announced and it has a very healthy number of women finalists. The list was announced at the latest colourful Polari event (see Jon Dolores’ blog for an account of the evening). Here’s the shortlist:

The Murder Wall – Mari Hannah
Tony Hogan Bought Me An Icecream Float Before He Stole My Ma – Kerry Hudson
The Sitar – Rebecca Idris
Catching Bullets: Memoirs of a Bond Fan – Mark O’Connell
The Tale of Raw Head and Bloody Bones – Jack Wolf

You can read more about the announcement on The Bookseller. The winner of this year’s prize will be announced at November’s Polari evening.

tony hoganOne of the finalist’s, Kerry Hudson, has also just won the Scottish First Book Prize. Her book Tony Hogen Bought Me And Ice Cream Before He Stole My Ma has been described as Trainspotting on a sugar rush. From the blurb, it tells a story of a Scottish childhood of council flats and B&Bs, fags and booze and drugs, the dole queue and bread and marge sandwiches. It is also the story of an irresistible, irrepressible heroine, and a dysfunctional family you can’t help but adore.

Together with three other category winners her book goes forward to a final round of voting for the £30,000 overall prize starting at the beginning of October. There’s more information here. Good luck Kerry!


Sarah Waters (from Wikimedia Commons)

Good news for Sarah Waters fans who thought that 2009 for the Little Stranger was a very long time ago. The wait for a new novel is now finite (huzzah!)  But it is still a year away (ya, boo, sucks). The Bookseller has reported that the as yet untitled book is to be sold in autumn 2014. It is set in London, 1922, in the  tense aftermath of World War One. You can read more about it here.

Orla Broderick, author of the January Flower, has a piece on the Irish writing site She talks about her background as a writer and how she develops her stories, not restricted to the taught seven major plots.

Time for some freebies. Jade Winters has four short stories available on her website. The Love Letter, My Story of You, Love on the Cards and Makeover all have love as a theme from love letters from the past spanning the decades to a new job, a new boss, a new love.

And finally, Ke Payne and Nicola Griffith got married (not to each other, their partners will be glad to hear). Nicola has a sweet photo on her blog. Congratulations both!

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