Fred D'Aguiar, Kamila Shamsie, Nell Stevens and Johanna Thomas-Corr will judge the Goldsmiths Prize 2021: the annual £10,000 prize awarding fiction at its most novel.
This year’s judging panel is chaired by Nell Stevens, a writer of memoir and fiction, winner of the 2019 Somerset Maugham Award, and lecturer in Creative and Life Writing at Goldsmiths, University of London.
Poet, playwright, novelist and University of California professor Fred D'Aguiar; novelist, Women’s Prize for Fiction winner and co-Vice-President of the Royal Society of Literature Kamila Shamsie; and journalist, book critic and New Statesman contributor Joanna Thomas-Corr form the rest of the panel.
Chair of judges Nell Stevens said: “I’m excited to be judging the Goldsmiths Prize in its ninth year. Perhaps now more than ever we need novels that challenge our perception of what is possible, in fiction and in life - I can’t wait to discover them.”
Deputy Editor of the New Statesman Tom Gatti, said: “The Goldsmiths reminds us that the novel needs boldness and invention in order to survive and thrive. The New Statesman is proud to continue our partnership with this essential prize.”
This year’s Goldsmiths Prize opens for submissions on Friday 22 January 2021, with the winner set to be announced on 10 November 2021.
Launched by Goldsmiths, University of London in 2013 in association with the New Statesman, the annual Goldsmiths Prize was created to recognise fiction that breaks the mould, opens up new possibilities for the novel form, and embodies the spirit of invention.
In 2019 eligibility for the Goldsmiths Prize was extended to authors of any nationality, provided they have been resident in the UK or Republic of Ireland for a minimum of three years and their submitted novel has been published there.
Last year M. John Harrison won for The Sunken Land Begins to Rise Again. Published by Gollancz, this uncanny tale of broken life in a Brexit Britain was described by 2020 chair of judges Frances Wilson, as “a literary masterpiece that will continue to be read in 100 years time, if the planet survives that long.”
This year’s judges were announced on Wednesday 20 January 2021 at the end of an online talk by Harrison marking his win.
Previous Goldsmiths Prize winners:
2013 - Eimear McBride, A Girl Is A Half-formed Thing
2014 - Ali Smith, How to Be Both
2015 - Kevin Barry, Beatlebone
2016 - Mike McCormack, Solar Bones
2017 - Nicola Barker, H(A)PPY
2018 - Robin Robertson, The Long Take
2019 – Lucy Ellmann, Ducks Newburyport
2020 – M. John Harrison, The Sunken Land Begins to Rise Again
Goldsmiths Prize 2021 key dates:
22 January – submissions open
26 March – submissions close
06 October – six-book shortlist announced
10 November – winner announced