This Year's Shortlist
The Paul Torday Memorial Prize (2021) official shortlist:
Judged by Paul Bailey, Roopa Farooki and Anne Youngson
- All the Water in the World by Karen Raney (John Murray, Two Roads)
- Dirt Clean by Judith Amanthis (Victorina Press)
- In Love with George Eliot by Kathy O’Shaughnessy (Scribe UK)
- Let Sleeping Dogs Lie by Elfan Jones (Unbound)
- The Man on the Street by Trevor Wood (Quercus)
Anne Youngson, Paul Torday Memorial Prize judge and inaugural winner of the Prize in 2019, says:
‘The five shortlisted novels demonstrated ambition, and significant literary skill in the way the writers realised that ambition. There were no commonalities of theme, and though two were in the crime fiction genre, they interpreted that genre in different ways. It was refreshing, but perhaps not surprising, to find that novelists coming to the form later in life understand what it is they want to achieve. None of these novels could be accused of following a trend or aiming for a particular niche. There is a confidence in the purpose and execution of all five books.’
The 2021 Prize winner: Kathy O'Shaughnessy
PAUL TORDAY MEMORIAL PRIZE WINNER 2021: KATHY O’ SHAUGHNESSY FOR IN LOVE WITH GEORGE ELIOT (SCRIBE UK) AWARDED £1,000
Kathy O’Shaughnessy has worked as Deputy Editor of the Literary Review, Arts and Books Editor of Vogue, Literary Editor of the European, and Deputy Editor of the Telegraph Arts and Books. She has done Book Choice for Channel 4, and has reviewed books for the Guardian, the TLS, the Telegraph, the Times, the Financial Times, the Independent, the Observer, New Statesman, Spectator, Evening Standard and other publications, as well as the World Service. Kathy also edited and introduced Incompatible Animals, poems in English written by the Croatian poet Drago Stambuk, and her short stories have been published by Faber in First Fictions.
PAUL TORDAY MEMORIAL PRIZE 2021 RUNNER-UP: KAREN RANEY FOR ALL THE WATER IN THE WORLD (JOHN MURRAY, TWO ROADS)
Karen Raney is a writer of fiction, an academic and a painter. She grew up in Schenectady, New York, attended Oberlin College and graduated from Duke University. In San Francisco, she managed an international guest house and worked as a jail nurse before moving to London, where she gained a Diploma from John Cass School of Art, and an MA in Visual Theory from University of East London. She went on to research visual literacy for Arts Council England and to lecture and publish on art and art education. She was long-term editor of the art journal Engage. Currently she leads the Doctorate in Fine Art at the University of East London. She has an MA in Creative Writing from Goldsmiths, University of London. All the Water in the World won the 2017 Pat Kavanaugh Prize when it was still a work-in-progress. In 2020, All the Water in the World was shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award.
The winner will receive £1,000, with a set of Paul Torday’s collected works. Runners-up will receive one specially selected Paul Torday novel with a commemorative book plate.
How to enter
- Deadline for entries: Monday 30 November 2021
- The novel must have been first published in the UK and Republic of Ireland between 1 September 2020 and 31 August 2021.
- The novel must be a full length work by a living author.
- The book must be in the English language and cannot be a translated work.
- The novel must be the author’s first published full length fiction work, but they can have had works published of other lengths or other genres in the past.
- The author(s) must be aged 60 or over at the date of first print publication of the novel and living at the date of submission. In the event that the author is shortlisted, they will be asked to provide proof of age.
- There are no residence or nationality restrictions.
- We cannot accept books that are only available in e-format or that are self-published or where the author has contributed or paid for the costs of publishing.
- Submissions must be made by the print publisher.