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Linen Hall Launches 2018 Michael McLaverty Short Story Award

CALLING ALL SHORT STORY WRITERS!

MICHAEL McLAVERTY SHORT STORY AWARD 2018

The Linen Hall Library in Belfast, Northern Ireland, has announced the launch of the 2018 Michael McLaverty Short Story Award. This prestigious award, which has run biennially since 2006, was set up to foster and encourage the tradition of the Irish short story.

Entrants must have been born in, or are citizens of, or resident in Northern Ireland/Republic of Ireland. The prize is £2,000 for the winning story and £250 for each of the two runners-up.

Michael McLaverty (1904 – 1992) was one of the foremost proponents of the Irish short story. His archive was donated to the Library by the Literary Executors of Michael McLaverty in 2005.

Adjudicators for this year’s competition are multi award-winning writer Claire Keegan (Antarctica, Walk the Blue Fields and Foster), and Patsy Horton, Managing Editor of Northern Ireland’s Blackstaff Press.

Claire Keegan said: “It is a pleasure to be associated with the Michael McLaverty Short Story Award, to honour the composition of new stories in remembrance and celebration of McLaverty’s own fine and even prose.”

Samantha McCombe, Linen Hall Librarian, said: “It is part of the ethos of the Linen Hall Library to protect, encourage and promote Irish writing. The Michael McLaverty Short Story Award is one of the very significant ways we encourage new writing talent.”

The inaugural competition in 2006 was won by Patrick O’Hanlon. Subsequent winners of the award have gone on to publish further works, including: Aiden O’Reilly (2008 winner): Greetings, Hero; Michèle Forbes (2010): Ghost Moth; Edith & Oliver; Mandy Taggart (2012): The Man of the House; Annemarie Neary (2014): A Parachute in the Lime Tree; Siren; The Orphans. 2016 winner Kevin Doyle has recently published his debut novel To Keep a Bird Singing.                          

Kevin Doyle, 2016 winner, said:  “Winning the Michael McLaverty Award was a defining moment for me as a writer. The prize is currently one of the major short story awards on the island of Ireland, held in honour of Michael McLaverty, a recognised master of the short story form. The prize money available to the winner is substantial – a fact not to be overlooked in this day and age – however the award’s prestige is undoubtedly its most valuable attribute. In the aftermath of winning I received wider recognition for my work. Indirectly, winning the award, led to my obtaining a publishing contract for my debut novel To Keep A Bird Singing (Blackstaff Press).”

The deadline for entries is midnight Friday 11th January 2019.

ENTRY GUIDELINES:

MICHAEL McLAVERTY SHORT STORY AWARD 2018

THE PRIZE FOR THE WINNER IS £2,000: with £250 for each of the two runners-up. The winning story will be published with the two runners-up in a limited anthology.

ADJUDICATORS:                           Multi award-winning writer Claire Keegan (Antarctica, Walk the Blue Fields and Foster) and Patsy Horton, Managing Editor of Blackstaff Press

ENTRY FEE:                                                £10 Sterling

CLOSING DATE:                            Midnight Friday 11th January 2019

Entry Guidelines:

1.The award is open to those who were born in, or are citizens of, or resident in Northern Ireland/Republic of Ireland.
2.NO entry form is required.
3. Entries must NOT have been, by the date of submission, published or broadcast in any medium.
4.  Entries must be typed, in double spacing, using only one side of A4 paper.
5.  Entries must NOT exceed the maximum of 3,000 words.
6.  Entries can be emailed to info@linenhall.com or posted to the Linen Hall Library at the address below. Hard copy entries will NOT be returned.
7.  No indication of the writer’s identity may appear on the story to be entered.
8.  Name, address, telephone number and e-mail address should be submitted separately, under the heading Michael McLaverty Short Story Award 2018.
9.  An entry fee of £10 Sterling must accompany each individual entry. Entries without this fee will not be considered.
10.  Payment can be made via our website:  https://linenhall.com/about-us/order-form/  (please forward payment confirmation email with your short story entry to info@linenhall.com), or by sterling cheque (payable to the Linen Hall Library). Please do NOT enclose cash.
11.  No more than ONE story may be submitted by any entrant.
12.  The decision of the adjudicators is final.
13.  Winners and runners-up ONLY will be notified.
14.  The adjudicators will not enter into any correspondence concerning the award.
15.  The staff of the Linen Hall Library will not enter into any correspondence concerning the award.
16.  Should an appropriate standard not be achieved, no award will be presented.
17. The Linen Hall Library reserves the right to select for publication such entries as may be deemed appropriate, in any year.
18. The Linen Hall Library will liaise with successful authors in preparing texts for publication.
19. The award will be presented at the Linen Hall Library in May 2019.

For more information about the Michael McLaverty Short Story Award 2018 and/or the Linen Hall Library, please visit the Linen Hall Library website at www.linenhall.com or email us at info@linenhall.com or phone us on +44 (0)28 9032 1707.

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Editor’s Notes:

Claire Keegan: Claire Keegan has written Antarctica, Walk the Blue Fields and Foster (Faber & Faber). These stories, translated into 17 languages, have won numerous awards including The Rooney Prize for Irish Literature; The Edge Hill Prize awarded to the strongest collection of stories published in the British Isles; The William Trevor Prize judged by William Trevor; The Hugh Leonard Bursary, and she has twice won The Francis MacManus Award. Antarctica was a Los Angeles Times Book of the Year. Walk the Blue Fields was Richard Ford’s Book of the Year, 2010, and Foster won the Davy Byrne’s Award, then the world’s richest prize for a single story. The text is now part of the Leaving Certificate syllabus. The stories have been published in Best American Stories, Granta, The Paris Review and The New Yorker. Keegan has also earned an international reputation as a fiction writing coach.

Patsy Horton: Patsy Horton is Managing Editor of Blackstaff Press. She has been involved in publishing for over fifteen years, and has worked closely with authors on their writing for almost all of that time. She has a PhD in English Literature from Queen’s University Belfast and an MA in French and English from Glasgow University. She provides professional development support to writers through the Irish Writers Centre and is an adviser to Words Ireland, an all-Ireland grouping that provides professional development and resource services to the literature sector. 

For more information about the Michael McLaverty Short Story Award or the Linen Hall Library please contact Rachel Wetherall, Head of Digital and Marketing Comms, at r.wetherall@linenhall.com or tel: 028 9032 1707.