The Commonwealth Writers prizes have relaunched with a new community website aimed at “connecting and inspiring new authors”.
The new site is a free-to-join forum for aspiring writers to get advice from established authors and publishers and debate the future of publishing.
Authors signed up to take part include the UK’s David Mitchell, Jon McGregor and Giles Milton, and Australian author Kim Scott. The current writer in residence is Canadian writer Katrina Best.
Lucy Hannah, Commonwealth Foundation programme manager culture, said the website was a “hub for connecting and inspiring new authors”. The prizes have been relabelled Commonwealth Writers, as reported previously, consisting of the Commonwealth Book Prize, awarded for best first book, and the Commonwealth Short Story Prize, and dropping the “best book” category.
Hannah said the intention was to “bring those prizes into the 21st century—[we’re] trying to make the prizes much more relevant by focusing on what’s unique about us—our reach across 54 countries. We are focusing on emerging voices with the prizes as catalysts to unleash new talents.”
The revamped prizes will be awarded next year, their 25th, and are now open for submissions.