Thomas Stewart
Thomas Stewart

Eleven recipients for New Writers Awards 2021

The Scottish Book Trust has revealed the recipients of New Writers Awards 2021.

The group of 11 in the New Writers Awards 2021 are a selection of talented writers who have not yet published a full-length book or collection, and will receive professional guidance to help them move towards publication, as well as financial support.

Funded by Creative Scotland and run by Scottish Book Trust, the national charity transforming lives through reading and writing, the awards have supported over 100 creative individuals since 2009.

The prestigious judging panel included Scots Makar Jackie Kay, Niall Campbell and Colin Waters for poetry; Tendai Huchu, Janice Galloway, Denise Mina and Alan Bett judging fiction; and Dean Atta, Lari Don and Hannah Sycamore (Scottish Book Trust) judging Children’s and YA entries. The Gaelic Books Council selects the two Gaelic New Writer Awardees.

Former New Writers awardees include Nicola White, whose novel The Rosary Garden (Profile) was re-released in January; Helen Sedgwick’s third novel Where the Missing Gather (Oneworld) will be published in May 2021 and Man Booker Prize shortlistee Graeme Macrae Burnet will release Case Study (Saraband) in October 2021.

Thomas Stewart

The 2021 awardees are:

Poetry: Nasim Rebecca Asl; Thomas Stewart; Tim Craven.

Children’s and Young Adult: Hazel Knox; Sally Costelloe.

Fiction and Narrative Non-Fiction: Deborah Chu; Gillian Shearer; Hannah Nicholson; Samantha Dooey-Miles.

Gaelic: Beth Frieden; Roddy Neithercut.

Each of the 11 recipients will receive a ÂŁ2,000 cash award and support tailored to their needs including mentoring from writers and industry professionals, training opportunities, and the platform to showcase their work to publishers and agents.

Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said: ‘In uncertain times, it is more important than ever to celebrate and discover new writers in Scotland. Working within COVID restrictions, Scottish Book Trust will support the awardees through online training, workshops and mentoring.

‘As always, the standard of the applications were very high and we look forward to future publications from this group.’

Alan Bett, Interim Head of Literature, Languages & Publishing, Creative Scotland said: ‘The list of past winners speaks for itself and gives us all reason to expect that the names on this year’s list will be on bookshelves across the country in future. It was a pleasure to sit on the fiction panel and the wealth of talent, while hugely encouraging, made decision making a near impossible process.’

Hazel Knox

Alison Lang, director of the Gaelic Books Council, said: ‘The Gaelic Book Council’s on-going partnership with Scottish Book Trust allows us to give Gaelic writers this valuable opportunity early in their careers to work with experienced mentors and develop their craft, and we are excited to be working with new writers of Beth and Roddy’s calibre this year as they work towards their first publications.’

The New Writers Showcase, a celebration of work by last year’s awardees, will be held online through Scottish Book Trust’s social media accounts on Wednesday 31 March.

Information about tickets will be available on Scottish Book Trust’s website soon.

Scottish Book Trust is a national charity that believes everyone living in Scotland should have equal access to books. Their work provides opportunities to improve life chances through books and the fundamental skills of reading and writing.