NEW WELSH WRITING AWARDS 2019 #NewWelshAwards WINNERS ANNOUNCED
The New Welsh Writing Awards 2019, run by New Welsh Review in association with Aberystwyth University, sought the best dystopian novella in the Aberystwyth University Prize and the best writing with a Welsh theme or setting in the Rheidol Prize, the latter being run with the generous support of long-term subscriber Richard Powell. The winners of the New Welsh Writing Awards 2019 are Pontypool’s JL George with The Word in the dystopian novella category and Norfolk’s Peter Goulding with On Slate in the Rheidol category. Both winners will receive £1,000 cash each as advance against e-publication by New Welsh Review under their New Welsh Rarebyte imprint and a positive critique each by leading literary agent Cathryn Summerhayes at Curtis Brown.
Sarah Tanburn was placed second in the Rheidol category for her fantasy novel set in the Brecon Beacons, Hawks of Dust and Wine, and Rhiannon Lewis in the dystopian novella category for The Significance of Swans; both Welsh authors will receive a £300 voucher towards a week-long residential course at Tŷ Newydd Writing Centre in Gwynedd, north Wales. Richard John Parfitt was runner-up with his popular cultural history of Newport, Tales from the Riverbank in the Rheidol category and Rosey Brown was runner-up in the dystopian novella category with her gay coming-of age-story Adrift – both Welsh writers received a voucher for a two-night stay at Gladstone’s Library in Flintshire, north Wales.
Gwen Davies was judge in the two categories, and was joined by co-judge Cynan Jones in judging the Rheidol Prize; both were helped by students from Aberystwyth University. The results were announced at a ceremony at Hay on 24 May 2019.
Winner, Aberystwyth University Prize for a Dystopian Novella: ‘JL George’s The Word manages to place at the heart of her ambitious novella – which explores ideas about propaganda, communication and cohersion – a touching and compelling story of friendship between two teenage boys on the run.’
Winner, Rheidol Prize for Writing with a Welsh Theme or Setting: ‘Peter Goulding’s On Slate stood out immediately. It is funny and insightful, and the lively picture it paints of the characters and community drawn to or defined by the Dinorwic slate quarries in the 1980s stays strongly in the mind. Because the prose is good and clear and honest, On Slatesucceeds also in bringing a sense of purpose to this history, a sense of life to the rock faces, and a personal regard for both these things that never feels off-balance. Like the climbers it presents, the story is at the same time careful and risk-taking, ambitious and humble. And these are the things of great writing.’
Congratulations to the winners below.
Aberystwyth University Prize for a Dystopian Novella – WINNERS
FIRST PLACE JL George (Pontypool, Wales) – The Word
SECOND PLACE Rhiannon Lewis (Abergavenny, Wales) – The Significance of Swans
THIRD PLACE Rosey Brown (Cardiff, Wales) –Adrift
Rheidol Prize for Writing with a Welsh Theme or Setting – WINNERS
FIRST PLACE Peter Goulding (Thetford, England) – On Slate (Non-fiction)
SECOND PLACE Sarah Tanburn (Penarth, Wales) – Hawks of Dust and Wine(Fiction)
THIRD PLACE Richard John Parfitt (Penarth, Wales) – Tales from the Riverbank (Non-fiction)
Both winners will receive £1,000 cash each as advance against e-publication by New Welsh Reviewunder their New Welsh Rarebyte imprint and a positive critique each by leading literary agent Cathryn Summerhayes at Curtis Brown. Second prizes are a £300 voucher towards a week-long residential course at Tŷ Newydd Writing Centre in Gwynedd, north Wales, and third prizes are a two-night stay at Gladstone’s Library in Flintshire, north Wales. The top six shortlisted authors will also receive a one-year subscription to New Welsh Review. In addition, New Welsh Review will publish the highly commended and shortlisted nominees for publication in the autumn 2019 edition of its creative magazine New Welsh Reader with an associated standard fee.
The Awards are open to all writers based in the UK and Ireland plus those who live overseas who have been educated in Wales.