This year’s Hall and Woodhouse DLF Writing Prize is open for submissions until 20th March 2020. My novella Travelling in the Dark was lucky enough to win last year’s prize, which aims to bring to wider attention writing from or about the West Country.
The prize is open to book length submissions of works of fiction, non-fiction, or short stories published by a local independent publisher or self-published, from any writer based in Dorset, Somerset, Wiltshire, Devon and Cornwall or with a close connection to those counties.
Further information and a submission form can be found here.
Kind sponsors Hall and Woodhouse, whose brewery was established in 1777, have been supporting writers in various ways over their many years of business. Thomas Hardy was apparently very fond of their famous Badger Beer.
I am absolutely delighted that Travelling in the Dark has won this year’s Hall and Woodhouse DLF Writing Prize. The prize was set up in 2018 by Dorchester Literary Festival organisers Janet Gleeson and Paul Atterbury to celebrate writing from the West Country.
The £1000 prize was awarded by guest of honour Minette Walters at a ceremony held in the Duchess of Cornwall Inn, Poundbury, Dorset on 18 July 2019. My thanks to Lucinda Gray and Anthony Woodhouse of Hall and Woodhouse who kindly sponsor this award.
It was lovely to meet the other shortlisted writers and hear readings from their books. They were Susmita Bhattacharya for her short story collection Table Manners, Dee La Vardera for her work of non-fiction The Road to Civitella, and runner up Maria Donovan for The Chicken Soup Murder.
The DLF announcement can be found here.
There are two lovely events taking place in June.
The Callington Book Fair will be held on Saturday 8 June from 10am to 3.30pm in Callington Town Hall. Entry is by donation to Cornwall Air Ambulance. The authors Lilian Henry, Anthony Fagin and Mark Simmons are also taking part along with a number of book dealers.
The following day, Sunday 9 June, Cornish Shorts is on at Greenway Literary Festival, Greenway House. From 2.30 to 3.30pm, Tom Vowler, Heather Norman and I will be discussing the importance of place in short stories. Admission charges apply.
I’m delighted that Travelling in the Dark is on the long-list for the Dorchester Literary Festival Writing Prize 2019. Now in its second year, the prize is for works of fiction and non fiction by writers from, or connected to, the South West.
Another book which is close to my heart is also on the long-list – Corpse Path Cottage by Margaret Scutt. Margaret was an accomplished author of two historical novels, but her crime novels failed to find a publisher during her life time. Set in the 1950s, an era it captures perfectly, Corpse Path Cottage was finally published last year more than six decades after it was written.
It’s just over a month until the inaugural Greenway Literary Festival. I’ll be discussing the importance of place in stories with Tom Vowler on Sunday 9 June at 2.30pm. Details here.
A local launch of Travelling in the Dark will take place on Tuesday 23 October at the Falmouth Bookseller, 6-8pm, free event, all welcome. We’ll be joined for the evening by Louise Boland, CEO of Fairlight Books.
The following morning, 24 October 8.30 to 9.30am, come along and be inspired by Louise’s innovative approach to publishing as she shares her passion for literary fiction at Stranger Collective’s Creative Breakfast. Free event but book your place here.
Felicity Notley will be reading her work from Cornish Short Stories on Saturday 6 October at the North Cornwall Book Festival, 10am, Main Marquee, as part of the Cream of Cornish event alongside Lucy Wood and other local authors. Free event.
Many thank to Blogger’s Bookshelf for choosing Travelling in the Dark as their Book Club choice for August 2018. I love the infographic they’ve created about my novella, and I’m particularly pleased to see that everyone who read it would recommend it to others.
You can read more about Sam Kalda, the Folio artist who designed the beautiful illustrations on the Fairlight Moderns covers, in this interview on Fairlight Books website.