The £10,000 Prize is presented in the name of the acclaimed publisher and literary agent Desmond Elliott, whose personal commitment to finding and nurturing new authors is commemorated with this award.
The Desmond Elliott Prize is given to a debut novel from any genre, published between 1April 2016 and 31March 2017. The judges will be looking for a novel which has a compelling narrative, arresting characters and which is both vividly written and confidently realised. The deadline for entries is Friday 25 November 2016 and entry forms can be downloaded from the website: www.desmondelliottprize.org.uk/submissions
Chairman of the Trustees, Dallas Manderson, said: “In 2017 we will be celebrating ten years of dazzling debuts. To date, we’ve had nine outstanding winners, all of whom have gone on to continue to their literary careers and produce second novels – thanks in no small part to the support provided by Desmond and his legacy. I know that he would be incredibly proud of the talent that the Prize has nurtured over the past decade, and as excited as us to learn who the tenth winner of the Desmond Elliott Prize will be.”
A longlist of ten books will be announced in April 2017, and a shortlist in May. The winner will then be revealed at a London ceremony at the end of June.
Previous winners of the prize are: Lisa McInerney for The Glorious Heresies (2016); Claire Fuller for Our Endless Numbered Days (2015); Eimear McBride for A Girl is a Half-formed Thing (2014); Ros Barber for The Marlowe Papers (2013); Grace McCleen for The Land of Decoration (2012); Anjali Joseph for Saraswati Park (2011); Ali Shaw for The Girl With Glass Feet (2010); Edward Hogan for Blackmoor (2009); and Nikita Lalwani for Gifted (2008).
Each year a trio of judges is appointed by The Desmond Elliott Prize Trustees. The 2017 panel will be announced in January.
In 2017 the Desmond Elliott Prize will be working directly with major book retailers, independent bookshops and book wholesalers to promote those titles selected for the prize. In particular for those short listed and the winning title where the Prize will endeavour to secure front of store retail promotions.