Dark domestic tales make eye-catching final six for Short Story Award
An explosive and diverse set of stories from six award-winning authors make up the shortlist for The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award 2013.
Two of the stories - from Pulitzer Prize-winning Junot Díaz and Sarah Hall - tackle the dangerous power of unusual sexual relationships, whilst the entries from Mark Haddon and Cynan Jones explore the implications of violence. The impressive shortlist is rounded off with a nimble and moving science-fiction tale from Toby Litt and a magical modern fable from Ali Smith.
The six shortlisted writers and the titles of their short stories are:
- Junot Díaz - 'Miss Lora'
- Mark Haddon - 'The Gun'
- Sarah Hall - 'Evie'
- Cynan Jones - 'The Dig'
- Toby Litt - 'Call it "The Bug" Because I Have No Time to Think of a Better Title'
- Ali Smith - 'The Beholder'
The victorious author will win £30,000, the biggest prize in the world for a single short story, with the five other shortlisted writers each receiving £1,000. The winner will be announced at a private gala dinner at The Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival on 22 March.
A book, Six Shorts, contains all the shortlisted stories and costs just £1.89 from Amazon. It is also downloadable for free for Times+ members. On the ebook, you’ll find the stories, plus details about how to vote for your favourite and see if your pick matches the judges’ winning choice, which will be announced on March 22.
Readers can savour all six shortlisted stories at two special events at Foyles, Charing Cross on March 20 and 21 - produced in conjunction with WordTheatre - each featuring readings by a stellar line-up of acting talent, including Olivia Williams (Rushmore, Hanna, Hyde Park on Hudson), Helen McCrory (Harry Potter, The Queen, Hugo), James D'Arcy (Master and Commander, Cloud Atlas), Jonathan Pryce (Brazil, Pirates of the Caribbean) and Gary Carr (Death in Paradise). They will also be able to read the stories in a specially produced ebook and vote online at The Sunday Times website for their favourite piece.
Andrew Holgate commented:
This is such an exciting shortlist, with some really gritty and varied subjects tackled with great skill by some world-renowned authors. The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award has come a long way in four short years, and the quality of the shortlist is a tribute to how seriously the prize is taken, and how quickly it has established itself in the literary calendar.
- 20 and 21 March Foyles Charing Cross reading events
- 22 March 4pm: Public panel discussion at The Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival on the topic of writing a successful short story. The event will feature Alison MacLeod, Professor of Contemporary Fiction at the University of Chichester, in conversation with Lionel Shriver, Joanna Trollope and Andrew Holgate. The winner of the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award will be announced at a special ceremony later that evening.