Sands to chair Women’s Prize for Fiction judges

Sands to chair Women’s Prize for Fiction judges

BBC Radio 4's "Today" programme editor Sarah Sands has been unveiled as the chair of the judges for the 2018 Women’s Prize for Fiction.

She will be joined by writer co-founder of the Women’s Equality Party, Catherine Mayer, radio and television journalist Anita Anand, writer and comedian Katy Brand and actress Imogen Stubbs, to help select the winning title of the award, formerly known as the Baileys Prize.

“I am proud to be chairing this admirable prize along with such independent-minded fellow judges,” Sands said. “The variety, originality and confidence of the authors this year is cheering and I am very much looking forward to discussing the nature of female achievement. “

The winner will receive an anonymously endowed cheque for £30,000 and a limited edition bronze figurine known as a ‘Bessie’, created and donated by the artist Grizel Niven.

The 2018 Women’s Prize for Fiction is administered by the Society of Authors and will be awarded on 6th June 2018 at an awards ceremony in central London, marking the 23rd year of the prize. Eligible novels must be published in the UK between 1st April 2017 and 31st March 2018.

The award is the UK’s only annual book award for writing by women celebrating excellence, originality and accessibility.  Established in 1996, to celebrate and promote international fiction written by women to the widest range of readers possible, the prize is awarded for the best novel of the year written by a woman. Any woman writing in English is eligible.

Naomi Alderman won the prize this year for her feminist science fiction novel The Power (Viking) in the last year of drink company Baileys’ sponsorship. It was revealed in May that the prize would adopt a new, collective sponsorship model instead of a single headline sponsor going forward.