Gillian Slovo wins Golden PEN award 2013

Writer Gillian Slovo has won English PEN's Golden PEN Award 2013.

Slovo will be presented with the award, along with a golden pen and a cheque for £1,000, later today (Monday 2nd December).

The award is given annually to an accomplished British resident writer who is highly regarded by the literary community with a body of work that has had a profound impact on readers. The winner is elected by the Trustees of English PEN.

Slovo served a three-year term as president of the Board of English PEN, resigning earlier this year.

Raficq Abdulla, acting president of English PEN, said: "Not only does [Slovo's] writing demonstrate the kind of courage, commitment and political acumen we celebrate at PEN but she has given the charity three years of dedicated service as President and seen our organisation grow year on year in reach and impact."

South African Slovo is the author of 12 novels and a family memoir, Every Secret Thing (Virago), as well as a playwright, with her co-authored play, "Guantanamo", reaching audiences worldwide.

She described her win as "an immense honour . . . made more special because this is the organisation which I value so highly and know so well after my three years as president, an organisation started by writers for the good of all writers."

Previous winners of the award include Iris Murdoch, Harold Pinter, Doris Lessing, Salman Rushdie and last year’s winner Linton Kwesi Johnson.