Congratulations to all the writers on the shortlist below who are listed in alphabetical order. Our judge, Samuel Hodder, literary agent from Blake Friedmann, Literary Agency UK, said he greatly enjoyed reading all the stories and it was a tough call to make final decisions. Read all his comments on his Judge’s report. Along with the winners, we are looking forward to seeing all their wonderful shortlisted stories in print in paperback and digital formats in our seventh anthology, due to be published by Ad Hoc Fiction in the autumn.
The first short story Karen ever wrote took second prize in the South China Morning Post short story competition. Since then, she has completed the Mlitt in Creative Writing and Glasgow University and been the recipient of a Scottish Book Trust New Writers’ Award.
She has been published in Mslexia and Gutter magazine, has been three times Highly Commended in the Bridport short story prize, short-listed in the Bridport poetry prize, shortlisted and honourably mentioned in the Fish Poetry Prrize, and been place third in the Reflex Fiction flash fiction competition.
Dan Coxon wrote the shortlisted story, GOYA IN THE DEAF MAN’S HOUSE.
Dan’s writing has appeared in The Guardian, Salon, The Lonely Crowd, Open Pen, Black Static, STORGY, Unthology and many other places, sometimes under the name Ian Steadman. His anthology This Dreaming Isle (Unsung Stories) was shortlisted for the Shirley Jackson Awards 2018, and Being Dad won Best Anthology at the Saboteur Awards 2016. When he isn’t writing, he runs a freelance editorial service at momuseditorial.co.uk. You can find him on Twitter @dancoxonauthor.
Mary is a writer and artist, with an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University. She has been placed for several short story prizes including winning second prize in BSSA, 2017 and has written articles for The Guardian and farming magazines. Her debut novel Where Crows Would Die is being published next year by Y Lolfa in Wales. She formed ‘Slightly Sheepish’ (painting watercolours of sheep and other livestock) over thirty years ago while sheep farming on the Black Mountain in South Wales.
Karen is a prose writer from Glasgow with a preference for flash and short fiction. She is addicted to writing competitions and is a perennial short-lister, though she has reached the prize winning stage a few times, including with Mslexia, Flash 500, Words With Jam and Ad Hoc Fiction. Her work is published in numerous ezines, magazines and anthologies. Her story Small Mercies was nominated for Best of the Net, the Pushcart Prize and is included in Best Small Fictions 2019.
Peter Jordan wrote the shortlisted story, AT THE VERY TOP OF THE WORLD.
Peter is a short story writer from Belfast. He has won numerous bursaries and awards, including three Arts Council Grants. In 2018, he was nominated for Best Small Fictions and Best of Net. In 2017, he won the Bare Fiction prize, came second in the Fish Prize and was shortlisted for the Bridport Prize. Over fifty of his stories have appeared in literary magazines and journals. He has taken time out from a PhD in Belfast’s Seamus Heaney Centre to complete the edits on his short story collection, Calls to Distant Places, which can be pre-ordered on Amazon. You will find him on twitter @pm_jordan.
Dave Wakely wrote the shortlisted story, GRANDMA’S PERFUME.
Dave is one of the organisers of Milton Keynes Literary Festival and of the Lodestone Poets. A Birkbeck Creative Writing MA graduate, he started writing fiction after a career in publishing, copywriting, web design and university administration. Shortlisted for the Manchester Fiction Prize in 2017 amongst other competitions, his short stories have appeared in several literary magazines, including Ambit, Glitterwolf, Mechanics Institute Review, Prole, Shooter, Token, and the anthology Best Gay Stories 2017. He lives in Buckinghamshire with his husband and a growing collection of books, CDs and guitars.
Chloe is the author of two poetry collections, The Mermaid Problem and Not Fox Nor Axe, which was shortlisted for the Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry and the Judith Wright Calanthe Award. She won the 2019 Iowa Review Award in Fiction, received second prize in the 2018 Bristol Short Story Prize, and was shortlisted for the 2017 Commonwealth Short Story Prize and the 2018 Manchester Fiction Prize.