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Press Release   •   Nov 03, 2010 10:45 GMT

Sony UK today announces the up and coming writers that have been shortlisted for the inaugural Sony Reader Award category for unpublished writers in the 2010 Dylan Thomas Prize.

The shortlisted novels are:

  • The Fall by Claire McGowan – 28-year-old Claire is originally from Northern Ireland and now lives in Kent after studying English and French at Oxford University. ‘The Fall’ is the story of two women living very different lives just streets apart in modern-day London. One night their lives collide in a brief moment of violence, leaving a man dead. As events accelerate and two very different people have to work together to get what they each want most in the world, their lives are changed irrevocably.
  • The Bellwether Revivals by Benjamin Wood – 29-year-old Benjamin grew up in northwest England and is now a Lecturer in Creative Writing at Birkbeck, University of London, where he teaches and develops undergraduate programmes. In ‘The Bellwether Revivals’, Oscar Lowe has escaped the urban estate where he was raised and found a place amid the illustrious avenues of Cambridge. But when he meets and falls in love with Iris Bellwether, an enigmatic medical student at King’s College, he is drawn into her world of scholarship and privilege.
  • Bitter Sixteen by Stefan Mohamed - the third shortlisted entrant is 22-year-old Stefan with his novel ‘Bitter Sixteen’, which he first drafted at the age of sixteen. Stefan is a writer, poet and musician from Powys, Mid Wales. He has recently graduated from Kingston University with a First Class degree in Creative Writing. In the novel, Stanley Bird, a solitary, eccentric teenager, lives in a quiet town in Wales where nothing ever happens. Then, on his sixteenth birthday, he is gifted with superpowers. Under the tutelage of his talking beagle Daryl, he decides to be a superhero...

The Sony Reader Award is a new category of the Dylan Thomas Prize, which has been created specifically to support unpublished British novel writers under the age of 30 using electronic book formats for the entire process, from submission of the entries through to judging and then publication.

The novels of the three shortlisted writers will now be judged by a distinguished panel of experts including ex-Catatonia front woman Cerys Matthews. The winning novel will be announced at the Dylan Thomas Prize ceremony in Swansea on 1st December, where the writer will receive a grand prize of £5,000 and the chance for their book to be published in eBook format.

Cerys Matthews said: “The quality of entrants has been extremely high and it has been a joy to experience firsthand the level of unpublished literary talent in this innovative new category. I am an avid reader and fan of Dylan Thomas so it was an honour to be selected as a category judge; I’m looking forward to announcing the winner at the awards.”

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