More info has come our way about the mysterious Writing Retreats in the Welsh Borders which form part of this year’s short story competition prize. LitCamp, who some of you may remember, is putting on a spate of retreats in the New Year. “If you plan to get real with writing a book in the new year, check it out. You can even drop Xmas hints about this to your nearest and dearest as EarlyBird tickets rates run until 24 December – you heard it here first. Or, Plan B, win the short story comp!”
The priceless trophy has arrived from our secret, latter day Fabergé cup maker. The true, the one and only 2014 prize mug.
Virginia Gilbert’s A Long Way from Home starring James Fox, Brenda Fricker and Natalie Dormer opens at cinemas throughout the UK this December. Virginia is a previous winner of the Willesden Herald short story competition. We reported recently on the launch of her novel Travelling Companion.
The View from the Tower by Charles Lambert is now available for pre-order on Amazon UK and US. It has been described as ‘a literary and psychologically charged murder mystery that slowly cuts deep to the bone’ and is a prequel to Charles’s previous novel Any Human Face. (More)
Charles Lambert is the judge for this year’s Willesden short story competition.
Actress Brenda Fricker with Virginia Gilbert at the launch of Virginia’s debut novel Travelling Companion at Dubray books, Grafton Street, Dublin, 12th September 2013. Writer and film director Virginia Gilbert’s story “Winter Lambing” took first prize in last year’s Willesden Herald international short story competition. You can read it in New Short Stories 6. Probably fair to blow a little trumpet or at least a party whistle for ourselves to celebrate the continuing success of our writers.
Thanks to LitCamp, the first prize this year now includes a writing retreat at a bookish guesthouse in Knighton/Tref-y-Clawdd, which is set amid “the lush, rolling countryside of the Welsh Marches”. It’s one week, half board, travel expenses not included. Write like demons.
We are delighted and honoured that the acclaimed writer, Charles Lambert, has agreed to be our judge for the 2013-14 international Willesden Herald short story prize.
“Born in England, Charles Lambert has been living in Italy since 1980. His début novel, Little Monsters, was published by Picador in March 2008 and his story The Scent of Cinnamon was selected as one of the O Henry Prize Stories 2007. … He now lives in Fondi, exactly halfway between Rome and Naples, a stone’s throw from what was once the Appian Way.” (guardian.co.uk)
Charles’ second novel “Any Human Face” was published by Picador in May 2010. Just this year, his agent made the following announcement: “The Blake Friedmann Literary Agency is pleased to announce two new deals with UK publishers for Charles Lambert. Angry Robot’s crime imprint, has acquired World English Language rights to two novels by Charles Lambert. The first to be published will be THE VIEW FROM THE TOWER, a gripping psychological thriller about friendship, love and betrayal, which begins with the killing of a high-level Italian civil servant when his wife is in a Rome hotel room with her lover, not far from the scene of the assassination. She must cut through the complex web of deceit that surrounds her in order to discover who is responsible.” (Charles Lambert – Wordpress).
You can see that only the highest standard of writing will suffice to set before this writers’ writer, also very much a readers’ writer. So you’d better round up those stray stories, throw a bucket of water over them and start schooling them if they are going to get anywhere in the annual Willesden story gala. Opening 1 August 2013.
Photo credit: Patrizia Casamirra
Description The best new short stories of 2013, as submitted to the Willesden Herald international short story competition. This year we are transported to locations in Australia, Britain, Ireland, Italy and Nigeria as vividly as in a waking dream. Relationships within and around families are played out in dramatic scenes of crisis, social alienation, dark humour and ultimately compassion. All in the company of ten writers with effulgent and compelling narrative gifts.
Publisher Pretend Genius Press, 1 May 2013
All Its Little Sounds and Silences – by Barnaby Walsh
Bolt – by Thomas Morris
Dance Class – by SJ Bradley
Donor – by Nici West
The Gift – by Alistair Daniel
Hangman – by Angela Sherlock
Holidaying with the Megarrys – by Danielle McLaughlin
Last Payment – by Anna Lewis
Rip – by Merryn Glover
Round Fat Moon and Jingling Stars – by Marie Murphy
And the winning entry in the 8th international Willesden Herald short story competition 2013, as chosen by David Means is:
“Holidaying with the Megarrys” by Danielle McLaughlin.
“All Its Little Sounds and Silences” by Barnaby Walsh
“Round Fat Moon and Jingling Stars” by Marie Murphy
Thanks to all who entered and to everyone who has supported the competition over the years, especially this year’s judge, David Means.
If you would like a masterclass in short story writing, David Means will be leading WordTheatre Writers’ Workshop & Retreat on July 5-July 12, 2013 in Edale, England.
We are thrilled and honoured to announce that David Means has kindly agreed to be the judge for the eighth annual Willesden Herald international short story competition.
David Means’ stories have a diamond-like sharpness and clarity, in which we visit locations, society and climates as vividly as in a waking dream. I couldn’t point to Sault Ste Marie on the map but I feel I’ve been there. I’ve never hung onto a train but I sort of know what it’s like now. I’ve never lived in an apartment in New York or slept rough but…you get the picture? Writers, you have your work cut out for you.
Wikipedia: David Means
The Spot by David Means review by James Lasdun in the Guardian
Interview with David Means in the New York Times
Short stories by David Means in The New Yorker
NY podcast: David Means reads Chef’s House by Raymond Carver
David Means’ author page at Faber and Faber
So intercept a story when it stops at traffic lights, shine its windscreen with a piece of tissue paper the size of a coin, run home, type it out and send it to us as soon as electronically possible. Or whatever your process is. Closing date: Friday, 21 December 2012.
Update, January 2013
Mary O’Shea’s story was runner-up in the London Magazine short Story competition. The prizes were awarded at a champagne reception on the House of Commons terrace on Tuesday 22nd January 2013. The judges for the competition were Edna O’Brien, Cathy Galvin and Alison Macleod.
The New Short Stories book series has a sparkly new website. Oh, you’re already here.
Update, November 2012
Jenny Barden’s novel Mistress of the Sea has been published by Ebury Press in hardback, with the paperback to follow. The word is it has been a runaway success in bookstores, including at Heathrow airport. Jenny’s story “Propitiation” in New Short Stories 3 was an excerpt from her then work in progress.
Duotrope have interviewed Steve Moran here for their listing of the Willesden Herald competition. You might not be able to read it after December, as they have announced that starting from January 2013, there will be a membership fee to access their literary markets database in full.
Update, October 2012
October 2. Henrietta Rose-Innes has taken the runner-up prize of £2,500 in the BBC 2012 international short story competition for her story “Sanctuary”. The results were announced at a ceremony in London, broadcast live on Radio 4 arts show Front Row. Miroslav Penkov took the first prize with “East of the West”. Details
October 24. A. J. Ashworth has won the Negative Press short story competition. Judge Evie Wyld says: ‘It was the voice that attracted me and Nicholas Hogg to this one. Her story is strong and understated at the same time.’ Details
You can read stories by A. J. Ashworth and Henrietta Rose-Innes in the New Short Stories series. (See sidebar for links.)
Update, September 2012
“Sanctuary”, a new short story by Henrietta Rose-Innes, has reached the short list for the BBC International Short Story Award 2012. The short-listed stories will be read by some of Britain’s most popular actors on Radio 4. Subscribe to this BBC podcast series to receive them as they are broadcast.
Update, May 2012
Emma Martin of New Zealand has won the
Commonwealth short story prize for the Pacific region with her story “Two Girls in a Boat”. Emma’s story “Victor” was included in Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 5.
Charles Lambert’s story “Bad Romance” is runner up in the Short Fiction competition 2012. His story “Curtains” features in Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 6.
Somewhere Else, or Even Here, a short story collection by A.J. Ashworth,
has been short-listed for the Edge Hill prize. A.J’s story “Overnight Miracles” was also included in New Short Stories 5.
Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 6 is now available on Kindle
And the result is…
12 April 2012: The results of the international Willesden Herald short story
competition 2012 as judged by Roddy Doyle were announced
at Willesden Green library centre tonight.
First prize went to “Winter Lambing” by Virginia Gilbert.
Equal runners up were “Curtains” by Charles Lambert
and “Frost Heave” by Geraldine Mills.
“Liars’ League actors read extracts from six stories shortlisted for the international fiction prize, plus the winner and runners-up are revealed.” The actors in order of appearance on the night: Susan Moisan, Camila Fiori, Silas Hawkins, Rob Witcomb, Adam Diggle, Will Goodhand. (More)
- Announcement: Willesden 2012 short list
- Introducing the authors of the short-listed stories 2012
- Save the Library Centre/Keep Willesden Green
- Facebook event listing and comments
- Nick Holdstock (including excerpt from “Half”)
- Charles Lambert
- Mary O’Shea (on Facebook comments: “A mug?”)
- Mikey Delgado
- Willesden Green Writers’ Group
- The Library Lab
- The writing of “In the Service of the Demon”
- A mention at Blake Friedmann agency
- Geraldine Mills: When Someone Believes in your Writing
Read all the short-listed stories in New Short Stories 6 from:
The Willesden Bookshop, Library Centre, 95 High Street, Willesden, London NW10.
Please support our local bookshop. Website
- Amazon.co.uk (free delivery UK)
- Publisher direct
- The Book Depository (free delivery worldwide)
- Amazon.com (possible free delivery US)
- Barnes & Noble
Available worldwide. To order from your preferred supplier, please quote:
“Willesden Herald: New Short Stories 6” (Publisher Pretend Genius Press, 2012).
Update, April 2012
Jo Lloyd, who won our 2009 competition, has a story
in Salt Publishing’s
Best British Stories 2012. This is the second in their annual
series selecting the best
stories by British writers published in the previous year, and
includes luminaries like Jeanette Winterson, Jon McGregor and
Alison MacLeod etc etc, as well as some newer names.
New Zealand writer and Willesden Herald New Short Stories 1 contributor,
Wes Lee has been chosen as one of the final five on the
shortlist for The Bryan MacMahon Short Story Award,
judged by Christine Dwyer Hickey in Ireland.
The Bryan MacMahon Short Story Award (2,000 euros) is one of the most
prestigious Irish prizes for an individual short story,
and is administered by
Listowel Writers’ Week.
Update, March 2012
- Invitation to Willesden on a spring evening
- Introducing the authors of the short-listed stories 2012
- Willesden Green Library Centre website
- Facebook event listing
Update, February 2012
- 2012-13 Results – Holidaying with the Megarrys by Danielle McLaughlin
- 2011-12 Results – Winter Lambing by Virginia Gilbert. Video playlist of readings, etc.
- 2010-11 Results – Out of Season by Mary O’Shea. Pictures, reports, links
- 2009-10 Results – The Architects by Wena Poon. Pictures, judge’s report, links to other coverage
- 2008-09 Results – Work by Jo Lloyd. Pictures, video, judge’s report and biographies
- 2006-07 Results – Kid in a Well by Willie Davis
- 2005-06 Results – Dodie’s Gift by Vanessa Gebbie & Secure by Mikey Delgado
- New Short Stories – the book series
- Write This – our publisher’s ezine
- Short Circuit – A Guide to the Art of the Short Story, edited by Vanessa Gebbie