Womens Prize for Fiction Winners
BAILEYS WOMEN’S PRIZE FOR FICTION ANNOUNCES 2014 LONGLIST
In May , it was announced that Orange would be ending its sponsorship of the prize. The prize was established to recognise the contribution of female writers, whom Mosse believed were often overlooked in other major literary awards,   and in reaction to the all-male shortlist for the Booker Prize. The winner is selected by a board of "five leading women" each year. The BBC suggests that the prize forms part of the "trinity" of UK literary prizes, along with the Booker Prize and the Costa Book Awards ; the sales of works by the nominees of these awards are significantly boosted. However, the fact that the prize singles out female writers is not without controversy. Byatt called it a "sexist prize", claiming "such a prize was never needed. No woman has won the award more than once but Margaret Atwood has been nominated three times without a win.
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The award was initially funded by an anonymous endowment and by the Orange Group, a telecommunications company that had frequently supported the arts. Eligible for the prize were novels written in English by a woman in the previous year. Translations were not eligible, but publishers could submit works by women of all nationalities, provided that the works had been released in the United Kingdom during the previous year. The prize was administered by Booktrust, an English literary advocacy organization, and sponsored and organized by the Orange Group. Organizers dismissed accusations of sexism, though they formed a shadow panel of male judges for the contest. In the Orange Award for New Writers—also restricted to women—was created for first-time novelists and short-story writers; it was discontinued in For a number of years, the prize was named to reflect its sponsorship.
When I was first approached about being this year's chair of the Bailey's Prize my first instinct was to say no - it isn't possible. I wasn't even sure if I could read that many novels even if I had nothing else to do at all. But colleagues, my chairman, even one of our head teachers who is a novelist, and my husband, all said 'do it'. So I said yes. At the beginning the organisers spoke about books, but that soon crept up to , , and finally,
By Gaby Wood. The first longlist of the newly named Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction has been announced, and it offers a great sweep of geography, genre and style. With a total of 20 novels included, it's almost impossible to interpret any particular shape or slant to the list, yet the broad range and high quality itself indicates that fiction written by women is thriving. In some previous years — when the prize existed under the auspices of Orange — there was little overlap between this list and that of others such as the Man Booker or the Costa. In others, the overlap has been critical: last year Hilary Mantel was expected to receive a third nod, having won the Man Booker and the Costa, and the idea of her scooping up all the prizes became contentious.