Now in its eleventh year, Spotlight First Novel Award is our way of celebrating and encouraging new writers. Every year we profile the winner and offer them transitional support.

The Award has a well documented knack of highlighting the writers of the future. Success stories include Philip Bowne, Cows Can’t Jump (Neem Tree Press 2020): Kate Swindlehurst with her memoir, The Tango Effect (Unbound 2020): Zoe Gilbert, Folk (Bloomsbury 2018).  

So far, eight of our shortlisted writers have gone on to mainstream success. Previous shortlisted writers now published (or about to be) include:

2021 Hazel Prior

2020 Emma Hughes

2018 Sophie Haydock

2016 Michelle Kenney

2016 Felicia Yap

2015 Annabel Abbs

2014 Mary Paulson Eliis

2013 Jessie Kidd

Read Philip Bowne’s Spotlight Success.

Picture yourself here: Spotlight Profiles.

“Thank you so much for all of your help and input, both with the book and the premise. Your patience and guidance has been invaluable, and I really appreciate it.” 

Katherine Peel. Spotlight Winner 2021

Further information, including how to apply here: Spotlight First Novel Award.

Next deadline: 14th February 2022.

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