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Michael Gifkins Prize 2021 shortlist announced

Text Publishing and the New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi O Aotearoa (PEN NZ Inc) have announced the shortlist for the 2021 Michael Gifkins Prize for an unpublished manuscript.

The shortlisted manuscripts are:

  • ‘Paper Cage’ by Tom Baragwanath, a ‘literary thriller about abducted children, a community in crisis—and a woman who may have to balance one against the other’
  • ‘Light Keeping’ by Adrienne Jansen, which follows ‘five generations of a grief-stricken family whose lives revolve around the disappearing profession of lighthouse keeping’
  • ‘Landed’ by Sue McCauley, about a ‘woman who must rebuild her life after her husband’s suicide’ in 1980s New Zealand.

The winner, to be announced in September, will be awarded a contract for world rights from Text, and an advance of NZ$10,000 (A$9300).

The shortlist was selected by Text Publishing from a longlist curated by New Zealand writers Paul Morris and Vanda Symon. Of the shortlisted manuscripts, the Text judges said: ‘The three finalists are all strong on story, character and atmosphere, taking us from lighthouses to police stations to city flats, from mysteries and accidents to political battles and family conflicts. We’re delighted to see such strong contemporary novel manuscripts from writers both emerging and well known.’

In its fourth year, the prize honours Michael Gifkins’s contribution to writers and New Zealand literature.

Last year’s winner, A Good Winter by Gigi Fenster, is scheduled for publication in September 2021.


Category: Awards Local news