Calling all British Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) writers- this competition needs your talent!
This year heralds the third annual BAME short story competition run by The Guardian Newspaper and 4th Estate team. The prize celebrates the talents of British ethnic minority writers who are in need of representation and promotion.
The winner will receive a chance to win £1,000, an exclusive one‑day publishing workshop and a taste of online publication.
Last year’s winner, Lisa Smith, had her story Auld Lang Syne published on the Guardian news website. The story follows a man in his 70s, Rufus Samuels, during an evening in jail after an altercation with his much younger girlfriend. It is a absorbing story of masculinity and ageing.
“Writing is exposing, so to have people from the literary world praise my work and reward it was a tremendous boost to my confidence.”
Sian Cain, Guardian books site editor and competition judge said of the short story:
“(It’s) a perfect example of what the short story can do when the form is at its best: containing as much of an emotional blow as that of a 800-page novel, regardless of its brevity.”
The prize is open to all Black, Asian, minority ethnic writers aged 18 or over who live in the UK or Ireland.
Judges include award-winning writer Reni Eddo-Lodge, journalist Sarah Shaffi, Mostly Lit podcast co-host Alex Reads, agent Elise Dillsworth and 4th Estate commissioning editor Anna Kelly.
Manuscripts of up to 6,000 words should be submitted to 4thestate.co.uk/prize.
Deadline for entries is the 1st of June 2018.
Entrants will have to wait until September for the winner announcement.
The Bookseller reports that in all, forty-eight bookshops are competing, from nine regions of the UK and are all hoping to win in their local area before going forward to compete for the overall, nationwide prize.
Here are the shortlisted books for each region. We have some of the bookshops listed in our bookshop section so the ones featured are linked:
Behrouz Boochani is a failed asylum seeker from Iran who has been held on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea for almost six years. The place doesn’t get much coverage for an offshore detention centre that holds failed refugees indefinitely, and maybe it should but all that might be about to change as Boochani’s book is about his time on the island and his attempted journey to safety.
This year’s winners have been announced by Poets & Writers, and the well-deserving recipients of the 2019 Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award are:
Reginald Dwayne Betts – “for mentoring individuals involved in the criminal and juvenile justice systems and for his efforts to reform these systems.”
Reginald Dwayne Betts writes memoirs and poetry. His most recent collection of poetry, Bastards of the Reagan Era, won the 2016 PEN New England Award in Poetry. While his memoir, A Question of Freedom: A Memoir of Learning, Survival and Coming of Age in Prison, is just the beginning of his campaigning to reform the criminal justice system in the UK. He has also made numerous visits to prisons and juvenile detention centres, where he shares his poetry and talks about the power of reading, literacy and mentoring those in incarceration.