Author Ali Smith has said the Goldsmiths Prize, which is now in its third year, has encouraged publishers to take risks.
The prize, awarded to bold and inventive fiction, was won by Smith last year for How to be Both (Hamish Hamilton).
Smith said of the prize: “The change it’s made is that publishers, who never take risks in anything, are taking risks on works which are much more experimental than they would’ve two years ago.
“That to me, is like a miracle. And that’s the Goldsmiths Prize.
“The prize has already its two years running changed the industry. That’s what it took, for Goldsmiths to launch a prize which was novel about the novel and understood the novel form.”
“Already the industry is acting on something which Goldsmiths knew all along; which is that the novel is completely alive, completely experimental and energetic at base, always will be revolutionary, and at the same time the readers love that.”
Goldsmiths Prize literary director Tim Parnell said: “We always hoped that the Goldsmiths Prize would be more than just another book prize. We wanted it to stimulate debate about the novel and to encourage publishers to take more risks. So it’s especially pleasing to hear Ali’s assessment of its impact.”
The £10,000 Goldsmiths Prize was launched in 2013, and was won that year by Eimear McBride for A Girl Is A Half-formed Thing (Galley Beggar/Faber).
The six shortlisted novels for the 2015 prize will be announced on 1st October, with the winner announced on 11th November at Foyles in Charing Cross Road, London.
Picture: Helen Jones/EIBF