The Betty Trask Prize and Awards
Betty Trask left a bequest to the Society of Authors in 1983 to fund a prize for first novels written by authors under the age of 35 in a romantic or traditional, but not experimental, style.
- The prize money, which totals £20,000, must be used for foreign travel
- The prize is open to published and unpublished novels
- The annual deadline for entries is 30 November
- The application form for the 2014 prize will be available to download shortly
The 2012 Prize
David Whitehouse received £8,000 for Bed (Canongate).
The 2012 Awards
Kalinda Ashton for The Danger Game (Tindal Street Press), Elizabeth Day for Scissors, Paper, Stone (Bloomsbury), Annabel Pitcher for My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece (Orion/Indigo), Emma Jane Unsworth for Hungry the Stars and Everything (Hidden Gem Press) each receceived £3,000.
Judges: Frances Fyfield, Mike Gayle, Fay Weldon.
Paul Bailey (pictured) on judging the Betty Trask and McKitterick prizes:
'For the last decade or so, I have judged a couple of prizes, both of which are administered by the Society of Authors – the Betty Trask award and the McKitterick prize. The latter is given to a first-time novelist over 40, and the Trask to up-and-coming, even previously unknown talent. My fellow judges are respected writers, not academics, members of parliament, television celebrities, or perpetrators of "ghosted" thrillers. We have made some terrific discoveries, especially with the current McKitterick winner, Ginny Baily, the author of Africa Junction, who is in her mid-50s. I like these moderately humble prizes, because they are in the necessary business of encouragement, with literary quality as the essential yardstick. Sod Big Books and little books alike, it's the individual voice that finally matters. It might just be a still, small voice, but if it has the power to enchant it gets my vote.'
(From Paul Bailey: I prefer humble prizes - The Guardian, Friday 13 July 2012)
View Past Winners
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