The Historical Writers' Association has joined forces with Goldsboro Books to launch its 2016 Debut Crown Award.
Goldsboro Books renewed its sponsorship for the prize - having sponsored the award in previous years, 2012 and 2013 - just weeks after Ben Fergusson was presented with the 2015 Debut Crown Award for The Spring Of Kasper Meier at the Harrogate History Festival.
The HWA Goldsboro Debut Crown will be awarded to the best historical novel by a first-time fiction author published in the UK during the judging period. A trophy, as well as prize money of £1,000, will be presented at the 2016 Harrogate History Festival, which will take place on 20th - 23rd October of next year. Submissions by authors and publishers can be made via the Historical Writers' Association new website www.historicalwriters.org.
Andrew Taylor, author and head of the judge’s panel, said: "Now in its fifth year, the HWA Goldsboro Debut Crown has emerged as the leading award for first-time historical novelists. Its prestigious shortlists reveal and celebrate the rising stars of the genre. The winner is, in the judges' view, the finest debut novel of the year's historical fiction, and attracts publicity to match."
The HWA and the Harrogate History Festival team welcomed Goldsboro Books as the sponsor for the award, describing the London bookshop as “the perfect partner” owing to its passion and enthusiasm for the genre.
Goldsboro Books expanded into adjacent premises over the summer, coinciding with a reported growth in revenue (up 27% in its financial year), helped in part by the relaunch of its website in March.
Managing director for Goldsboro Books, David Headley said: "Goldsboro Books is delighted to sponsor this award that promotes and supports historical fiction. Goldsboro remains a champion for debut writers, and we are especially proud to work with the Historical Writers' Association."
Headley plans to launch an online international bookseller called Bookman & Black, completely separate from Goldsboro Books, next spring.