Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction LongList 2016
The Bailey’s Prize Long List from that fascinating blog Word by Word.
It’s great to see a list of successes; so many great titles grouped together. If I had time I’d read them all – but, of course, I don’t and won’t.
Today is International Women’s Day, this year the theme is #PledgeForParity and the Baileys Women’s Prize certainly does a lot to advance that challenge, with their ambition to bring the best women’s writing and female storytellers to ever-wider audiences.
In selecting the following 20 titles for the longlist the Chair of Judges Margaret Mountford shared that:
“We had a hugely enjoyable and stimulating meeting, as there were a great many strong novels in contention. We are delighted with the quality, the imaginative scope and the ambition of our chosen books, a longlist which reflects the judges’ interests and tastes. We hope readers will enjoy the variety of outstanding work on offer.”
Half the longlist are debuts, they represent seven nationalities, four previous shortlisted authors and the first Zimbabwean author to be longlisted for the prize.
The longlisted books are as follows:
Kate Atkinson: A God in Ruins – Teddy, would-be poet, heroic…
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Congratulations to Eimear McBride for winning the Baileys Women’s Prize for fiction. It’s nice to read about someone pushing the envelope of the novel out and being rewarded for their courage.
Also announced yesterday was the lower-key but still important HWA Debut Crown shortlist. The Historical Writers Association has decided that they too should have a range of awards similar to those given by the Crime Writers Association (CWA).
It’s lovely to read about these successes. But I still wonder about those who don’t win them. Does the existence of a prizewinner affect other people’s sales?
As a reader I also wonder if all the hype and publicity skews what I read. While wandering round a bookshop I’m likely to pick up books I’ve heard of, even if I can’t recall why they seem familiar.
Does winning a prize affect a book’s long term sales? Or does it fade from popularity as fast as it would without the prize?
We seem to live in a world of awards and competitions. Is this a good thing? bad? totally irrelevant?