We're pleased to announce the results of our 2020 W&A Working-Class Writers' Prize
Firstly, here are our two brilliant runners-up with a few words from our judge Lisa McInerney on why they made the cut. Congratulations to the following writers:
The Half Life of Snails by Philippa Harry Holloway
Lisa: "Philippa’s story was fully-realised. Her writing shows a deft touch, and the synopsis proves she’s got a great concept and the plotting chops to succeed with it."
The Voices of Rats & Birds by Joshua Holton
Lisa: "Josh displays a knack for detail and knowing exactly how much of that detail to deliver to make an intriguing read. I think the concept driving the novel is extremely powerful."
Another big congratulations to our four other shortlisted writers, for whom, Lisa was so impressed, she decided to create another category. Highly Commended places go to Denise Rawls, Hana Fazal, Din Havolli & Lou Kramskoy.
Our runners-up and Highly Commended writers will receive a W&A book bundle as well as a year's free subscription to The Society of Authors.
We're pleased to announced that this year's winner is Steve Hennessy with his story, The Red Collar.
Hennessy, who was selected from hundreds of entries, will receive a 12 months of mentoring from Lisa McInerney, as well as a cash prize of £200, one year's free subscription to the Society of Authors, free admission to one of our events as well as a bundle of books.
Of the winning entry, our judge Lisa McInerney said: Steve Hennessy's submission was a lively read and his affection for his characters immediately apparent. Even restricted to 2000 words, it was obvious that he has a knack for knowing what to reveal and when; he lets the characters exist in their own space, rather than as a means to deliver a plot. His idea - a contemporary retelling and then extension of Othello - is ambitious in that he's aiming to tackle a classic story in his own style and then push beyond it to examine the ramifications for its players. I think it has the potential to excite readers too. It's the submission I thought about most after reading, and I'm keen to see what Steve does next.
A massive thank you to everyone who entered our prize this year. We were overwhelmed by the wealth of brilliant writing and we do hope that you continue to write and share your brilliant stories.