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Andrew Cowan won the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award in 1995 for Pig

  1. There’s no point in advising you to read because you wouldn’t be a writer unless you were already a reader, would you? Just don’t go reading the latest prizewinners and bestsellers in the hope of discovering what publishers are looking for. By the time your book is written, they’ll be looking for something else.
  2. Expect it to be hard. Expect the achievement to fall short of the ambition, but stay true to your ambition: be dogged, keep going.
  3. Join a reputable MA programme. You’ll not only find a community of readers – which is, as Bernard Malamud said, a miraculous thing – but access to agents and publishers, who are actively looking to recruit new writers from the best courses.

Andrew Cowan was born in Corby and educated at Beanfield Comprehensive and the University of East Anglia, where he was taught by Malcolm Bradbury and Angela Carter.  His first novel Pig (1994) won five literary awards, including The Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award.  This was followed by Common Ground (1996), Crustaceans (2000), What I Know (2005) and Worthless Men (2013).  His creative writing guidebook, The Art of Writing Fiction, was published in 2011, and he has just completed his sixth novel.  He is the Director of the Creative Writing programme at UEA.

Find out how to enter the 2016 Sunday Times / Peters Fraser + Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award – closing date 1 May 2016.

Young Writer Award @YoungWriterYear

Follow us on twitter. The Young Writer of the Year Award is a prize of £10,000 for a writer under 35.

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