Wednesday, 13 May 2009


The longlist for the newly renamed Cork City - Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award - for all eligible collections in English - was released today. There are some top names in there along with a raft of newbies. Some names that stand out for me (because I have read/know/met/am interested in them, I guess) are James Lasdun, Seán O'Brien, Mary Gaitskill, Wells Tower, Kazuo Ishiguro, Alex Keegan, Tania Hershman, Petina Gappah and, a member of my own Writing Peer Group, Alan McMonagle. There's also a new-to-me Irish author, Robert Graham, who hails from Belfast and teaches creative writing at Manchester University (lots of Irish writers teaching there!). Robert is one of eight Salt authors on the longlist. Congrats all!

From next year it is planned to have a shorter longlist (how short or long one wonders?) because at 57 entries this year, it's all becoming a bit unwieldy.

At €35,000 the award is the largest in the world for the short story form and monetarily is greater than the Costa Book of the Year Award and the Orange Prize.

The shortlist of five will be decided in late June, with the winner announced on September 20th at the close of the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Festival in Cork.

The judges are Lloren A. Foster, an Assistant Professor of English at Hampton University; Milka Jankowska who co-ordinates the International Short Story Festival in Wroclaw, Poland; and award-winning Irish author Vincent McDonnell.

Here's the breakdown of the longlist, by nationality:

4 Irish Authors:

Michael J. Farrell, Life in the Universe, The Stinging Fly Press

Robert Graham, The Only Living Boy, Salt Publishing

Alan McMonagle, Liar, Liar, Words on the Street

Philip Ó Ceallaigh, The Pleasant Light of Day, Penguin Ireland

15 American Authors:

Eleanor Bluestein, Tea and Other Ayama Na Tales, BkMk Press (University of
Missouri-Kansas City)

Bonnie Jo Cambell, American Salvage,Wayne State University Press

Dennis Cooper, Ugly Man: Storie, Harper Perennial

David Eagleman, Sum, Pantheon Books (Random House)

Mary Gaitskill, Don’t Cry, Pantheon Books (Random House)

Lauren Groff, Delicate Edible Bird, Hyperion

Daniel A. Hoyt, Then We Saw The Flames, University of Massachusetts Press

Ian MacMillan, Our People, BkMk Press (University of Missouri-Kansas City)

James Mathews, Last Known Position, University of North Texas Press

Christopher Meeks, Months and Season, White Whisker Books

Lydia Peelle, Reasons for and Advantage of Breathing, Harper Perennial

Andrew Porter, The Theory of Light and Matter, University of Georgia Press

Glen Pourciau, Invite, University of Iowa Press

Midge Raymond, Forgetting English, Eastern Washington University Press

Wells Tower, Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned, Farrar, Straus and Giroux

18 British Authors:

Anthony Cropper, Nature’s Magician, Route

Jane Feaver, Love Me Tender, Harvill Secker (The Random House Group)

Paul Flynn, Crossing the Border, CC Publishing

Tania Hershman, The White Road, Salt Publishing

Sue Hubbard, Rothko’s Red, Salt Publishing

Kazuo Ishiguro, Nocturnes, Faber and Faber Limited

Sushma Joshi, The End of the World, FinePrint Books

Alex Keegan, Ballistics, Salt Publishing

Charles Lambert, The Scent of Cinnamon, Salt Publishing

James Lasdun, It’s Beginning to Hurt, Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Tom Lee, Greenfly, Harvill Secker (The Random House Group)

Frederick Lightfoot, Fetish and Other Stories, Superscript

André Mangeot, A Little Javanese, Salt Publishing

Sean O’Brien, The Silence Room, Comma Press

John Saul, As Rivers Flow, Salt Publishing

Ali Smith, The First Person, Penguin Group Canada

Tender, Mark Illis, Salt Publishing

Simon Van Booy, Love Begins in Winter, Harper Perennial

5 Canadian Authors:

Tricia Dower, Silent Girl, Innana Publications and Education Inc.

Hannah Holborn, Fierce, McClelland & Stewart

Pamela Stewart, Elysium, Anvil Press

Deborah Willis, Vanishing and Other Stories, Penguin Group Canada

Kuzhali Manickavel, Insects Are Just Like You and Me Except Some of Them Have Wing, Blaft Publications

1 Dutch Author:

Arnon Grunberg, Amuse-Bouche, Comma Press

1 Estonian Author:

Kristiina Ehin, A Priceless Nest, Oleander Press

1 German Author:

Maike Wetzel (Trans. Lyn Marven), Long Days, Comma Press

1 Icelandic Author:

Gyrơir Elíasson (Trans. Victoria Cribb), Stone Tree, Comma Press

2 Indian Authors:

Jahnavi Barua, Next Door, Penguin Books ( India )

Jasmine Anita Yvette D’Costa, Curry is Thicker Than Water, BookLand Press

1 Macedonian Author:

Kiril Bozhinov, Eclipses: Stories of Disappearances and Reappearance, Beyond Art Productions

1 Malaysian Author:

Shih-Li-Kow, Ripples and Other Short Stories, Silverfish Books

2 New Zealand Authors:

Jeanette Galpin, Aroha and the River, Maungatiro Press of Marton

Charlotte Grimshaw Singularity Vintage

2 Nigerian Authors:

Sefi Atta, Lawless, Farafina Books

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, The Thing Around Your Neck, Fourth Estate LTD

1 Spanish Author:

Empar Moliner (Trans. Peter Bush), I Love You When I’m Drunk, Comma Press

1 Ukrainian Author:

Sana Krasikov, One More Year, Portobello Books Ltd

1 Zimbabwean Author

Petina Gappah, An Elegy for Easterly, Faber and Faber Limited


Tricia Dower said...

Thanks so much for for posting the list. I'm thrilled to see my name on it. Good luck to your friend Alan.

Tricia Dower,


Oooh, congrats Tricia!! I do love Canadian s/story writers: Gallant, Michael Trussler, Munro, Alasdair MacLeod et al. I'll be checking you out!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Hello Nuala,
Hope all is well/ goes well, with babby no. 3. There's an award over at mine when ye get a chance.Best wishes P.

Elisabeth Ingram said...

Thanks for posting this list up. I'm starting up a little short story comp for students in Glasgow, so it's great to have some (unrealistically high) inspiration! One day...

Your blog is really informative, I regularly read it and find it inspiring. Have a zombie chicken award (and a Lovely Blog Award), to add to your pile!

Best - Lis