Last Friday morning, Jude and Alison met Jenny Tunstall, our BSSA 2022 Local Prize winner, at Mr B’s Emporium of Books in Bath, so owner Nic Bottomley could present the book vouchers he generously donated for her win. We all posed in front of the book-filled bath in this fabulous bookshop and had a celebratory cup of coffee afterwards. A happy occasion. And thanks very much to Mr B’s for continuing to support our BSSA Award.
Jenny wrote the story ‘Starling Boy. In the judges’ report, we commented:
What an exuberant and original use of language, with echoes of the beat poets and Dylan Thomas. This story hurtles along but, at its core, is the sad tale of a young lad and his alcoholic mother – all the more poignant when buried in an explosion of the sights and sounds of school life.
We’re delighted that Jenny is coming to the online launch of the 2022 BSSA Anthology of winning and shortlisted stories on Zoom on December 9th, 7.30 pm to 9.30 pm GMT to read an extract from ‘Starling Boy’. Nearly all the other winning and shortlisted authors are coming to read at the event. We still have spaces for those who would like to come and listen to extracts from a marvellous array of short stories. If you would like to attend, email us at bathshortstory award (at) gmail (dot) com
The 2022 Bath Short Story Award Anthology is published on Friday 9th December by Ad Hoc Fiction. It will be available from the Ad Hoc Fiction boorkshop, and Amazon in paperback and digital forms.
Alison Woodhouse, Jane Reikemann and Jude Higgins, the BSSA team, are hosting an online launch on the evening of the same day. We welcome those interested in contemporary short stories to come along and listen. Most of the twenty short listed writers, from the Award, including the winners, will be reading extracts from the beginning of their stories to whet your appetite. There is a really interesting variety of themes and subject matters in the book. The quote from the back is copied here to give you a flavour.
2022 has seen little relief from seismic world events but again we were impressed and
delighted by the range and quality of stories submitted to this year’s competition.
This anthology presents our twenty short-listed and prize-winning stories, traversing lifelong
friendships, audacious middle-aged women, the perils of house-sitting pets and a yearning
for alien intervention. They range from absurd and darkly funny to raw and vulnerable to
wise and poetic and showcase just what the short story form is capable of.
Our judge for 2022, Writer, editor, and teacher, Paul McVeigh said this:
‘It speaks to the reputation of the Bath Short Story Prize that the stories had such variety in genre, plot and style with impressive quality and I very much enjoyed reading them.’
The event is taking place from 7.30 pm to 9.30 pm on Friday 9th December (GMT on Zoom. As well as the readings, there will be a chance to meet the authors in a break out group and we’re holding a draw for a free copy of the anthology. We will also announce the details of the 2023 Award and welcome our new judge during the evening. To get a link, please email us at
Bathshortstoryaward (at) gmail (dot) com as soon as possible. Thanks.
Hope to see you there!