After much deliberation, our Shadow Panel have made their choice and have chosen their winner…
Jessie Greengrass’s An Account Of The Decline Of The Great Auk, According To One Who Saw It
What the panel said
“We agreed that Greengrass is an extremely accomplished, interesting and promising writer. One interesting point about this book as a whole is its frequent themes of loneliness and arctic weather. I particularly admire how Greengrass subtly challenges preconceptions of gender by purposefully leaving it obscure about whether the protagonist is male or female in several of her modern-day stories – similar to what Ali Smith does in her short stories but Greengrass’ fiction explores such different ideas. Interestingly, we all had some favourite stories in the collection.” Eric Karl Andersen at Lonesome Reader
“There was a lot of talk about the form of the short story in the context of Jessie’s collection. Winter 2058, the title story, and On Time Travel are three of those we all highlighted. We discussed the theme of cold climates that Jessie favours and how well her thoughts corresponded to the backdrop and general situation. We spoke of the writing, how the telling in this book really works.” Charlie Place at The Wormhole
“As a panel, we felt this collection contained some stunning stories, worthy of winning standalone competitions. Collectively we loved ‘Winter, 2058’ and between us every single story had something of merit which we admired or just really enjoyed. We were also pleased to champion a short story collection; short stories seem to be a neglected form in terms of readership in the UK, which always seems to me to be an odd thing considering they fit perfectly into our busy lifestyles. Maybe this is the collection to tempt more people to engage with the form.” Naomi Frisby at The Writes Of Women
“Congratulations, Jessie. This is a hugely ambitious piece of work that demonstrates great talent and much promise for the future. Of course, coming to this decision was not easy. This year’s shortlist was full of exciting, often experimental work, written by fresh, new voices. I loved reading all four and must admit that it was difficult to pick a favourite — although I championed Jessie’s work right from the start.” Kim Forrester at Reading Matters
“It was a very, very tough decision as the shortlist was so, so, so, so good. We are all thrilled with the result as we think this collection of short stories is incredible and Jessie is going to be an author you all need to keep your eyes on. I would highly recommend you go and get your mitts on it along with the rest of the shortlist” Simon Savidge, Savidge Reads
We’d like to say congratulations to Jessie – and a huge thanks to our wonderful Shadow Panel – it’s been fascinating to read their thoughts.
The winner of the 2016 Sunday Times / Peters Fraser + Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award will be announced on 8 December 2016.