Louise Doughty has been announced as the chair of an illustrious panel of judges for this year’s John Llewellyn Rhys Prize.
ouise will be joined by the authors Joanna Kavenna and Stephen Knight to judge the best work of literature (fiction, non-fiction, poetry or drama) by a UK or Commonwealth writer aged 35 or under.
The shortlist will be announced on Monday 26 October.
The winner will receive a cheque for £5,000, with the other shortlisted authors receiving £500 each. The winner will be announced at a ceremony in central London on 30 November.
About The John Llewellyn Rhys Prize
The prize was founded 66 years ago in honour of the writer John Llewellyn Rhys, who was killed in action in World War II. His young wife, also a writer, began the award to honour and celebrate his life. Past winners include Margaret Drabble in 1966, William Boyd in 1982, Jeanette Winterson in 1987, Ray Monk in 1990, Matthew Kneale in 1992 and David Mitchell in 1999. Last year’s winner was Henry Hitchings with The Secret Life of Words.
About the Judges
Louise Doughty is a novelist, playwright and critic. She is the author of five novels; Crazy Paving, Dance With Me, Honey-Dew, Fires in the Dark and Stone Cradle, and one work of non-fiction A Novel in a Year. She has also written five plays for radio. She has judged many prizes for emerging authors, including the Orange Award for New Writers, and was a judge for the 2008 Man Booker Prize for fiction. Her new novel, Whatever You Love, will be published in 2010.
Joanna Kavenna grew up in various parts of Britain, and has also lived in the USA, France, Germany, Scandinavia and the Baltic States. Her first book The Ice Museum was about travelling in the far North. Her most recent book is a novel called Inglorious, which was shortlisted for the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize 2006/7 and won the 2008 Orange Award for New Writers. Kavenna’s writing has appeared in the London Review of Books, the Guardian and Observer, the Times Literary Supplement, the International Herald Tribune, the Spectator and the Telegraph, among other publications. She has held writing fellowships at St Antony’s College, Oxford and St John’s College, Cambridge. She currently lives in the Duddon Valley, Cumbria.
Stephen Knight was born in Swansea in 1960. He read English at Jesus College, Oxford, after which he studied at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School to become a freelance director with a particular interest in new writing. He has worked extensively as a creative-writing tutor in schools, colleges, and for the University of Glamorgan and Goldsmiths College, University of London. In 1987 he received an Eric Gregory Award and in 1992 won first prize in the National Poetry Competition. He is the author of three main poetry collections: Flowering Limbs (1993), a Poetry Book Society Choice, shortlisted for the Mail on Sunday/John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and the T. S. Eliot Prize; Dream City Cinema (1996), also shortlisted for the T. S. Eliot Prize; and, for younger readers, Sardines and Other Poems (2004).
Stephen Knight has also published a novel, Mr Schnitzel (2000), which won the Arts Council of Wales Book of the Year in 2001. His fiction and poetry reviews appear in the Times Literary Supplement and the Independent on Sunday. He lives in London.