Writers from six countries and across four continents, including Colum McCann, Deborah Levy and Petina Gappah, make up the 12-strong longlist for the £30,000 2016 Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award.
Now in its seventh year, the award "has a reputation for showcasing established and emerging writers", the organisers have said. The longlist this year is made up of "Backcountry" by Maggie Shipstead, "Clap Hands" by Thomas Morris, "Poppies in the Snow" by Madhulika Liddle, "The Dacha" by Alix Christie and "The Elector of Nossnearly" by Rob Magnuson Smith.
Levy's "The Glass Woman" and McCann's "What Time is it Now?" join "The Human Phonograph" by Jonathan Tel, "The Master Swordsman" by Marcel Theroux, "The News of Her Death" by Petina Gappah, "The Phosphoresence" by Nicholas Ruddock and "Unbeschert" by Edith Pearlman on the longlist.
This year’s judging panel comprises broadcaster Melvyn Bragg; critic and commentator Alex Clark; novelist and short story-writer Mark Haddon, and award winning author Rose Tremain. Andrew Holgate, Literary Editor of The Sunday Times, completes the line-up, alongside the non-voting chair of judges Lord Matthew Evans.
Holgate said: "This year's longlist shows once again the great strengths of the Sunday Times EFG Short Story Prize. Its internationalism, with writers represented for four different continents and six countries. Its breadth, with all types of stories, from fairy tale to meta fiction. And its happy knack, because the stories are read blind, of mixing internationally recognised names with newcomers."
The Award accepts entries of 6,000 words or under published in English from fiction authors from anywhere in the world who have been published in the UK or Ireland. The Award reflects The Sunday Times’ support for outstanding writing and the rich literary heritage of the newspaper, and the ongoing commitment of EFG, a leading international private bank, to the literary world. The Award is managed each year by the reading charity, BookTrust.
The winner will receive £30,000, and the five other shortlisted writers will each receive £1,000. The shortlist will be announced in The Sunday Times on 20th March. The winner will be announced at a gala dinner hosted by EFG at Stationers’ Hall in London on Friday 22nd April. Readers can read the longlisted stories on the Sunday Times website.
Last year's winner was Chinese writer Yiyun Li for her story "A Sheltered Woman".
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