Dylan Thomas Prize Shortlist 2013 Announced

The Dylan Thomas Prize, which is sponsored by Swansea University, has announced its shortlist for its 2013 award. The shortlist is comprised of seven writers, all with debut works, hailing from across the globe: Australia, India, United States, England and Wales, which the judging panel say 'indicates the truly international scope of the prize'.

The seven books, whittled down from a long list of 12, are:


  • Tim Leach, The Last King of Lydia (Atlantic Books)
  • Marli Roode, Call It Dog (Atlantic Books)
  • Majok Tulba, Beneath the Darkening Sky (OneWorld)

Short Stories

  • Claire Vaye Watkins, Battleborn (Granta)
  • Prajwal Parajuly, The Gurkha's Daughter (Quercus)


  • James Brookes, Sins of the Leopard (Salt Publishing)
  • Jemma King, The Shape of a Forest (Parthian)

Dylan Thomas Prize logoNow in its seventh year, the international prize is open to any published author in the English language under the age of 30. 

As well as being a shortlist made up entirely of debut works, it also features two pieces of poetry and two collections of short stories.

Chair of the judging panel, Peter Florence, said: "We had such a strong short list this year that we had to include a seventh title, as they are all contenders. In all my years on the judging panel of the prize, I've never seen a higher standard of entry from young writers."

Hay line-upChair of the Prize, Peter Stead, said: "The seven books on this year's shortlist indicate the truly international scope of the Dylan Thomas Prize. There are two young poets, one English, one Welsh and five prose writers from around the world whose stories take us to Nepal, war-torn Sudan, South Africa, Nevada and the Near East of Classical times. 

These are amazing and accomplished books by writers who are all under 30 and who will be coming to Swansea to speak to aspiring young writers and to hear the judging panel's choice of winner."

Picture:  Swansea University's Chancellor Rhodri Morgan (2nd left) and head of the College of Arts and Humanities Prof John Spurr (3rd from right) pictured at the Dylan Thomas Prize event at last year's Hay Festival with Prize Chair Peter Stead (left) and previous winners Maggie Shipstead (centre) and Rachel Tresize (2nd from right) and Rhondda AM Leighton Andrews

Seating arrangements - coverThe 2013 judging panel consists of: founder of the Hay Festival, Peter Florence; novelist and Telegraph columnist, Allison Pearson; author, singer and BBC 6 music presenter, Cerys Matthews; journalist and author, Carolyn Hitt; commentator and artist, Kim Howells; Guardian Review journalist, Nicholas Wroe; poet and English professor at the University of Texas, Kurt Heinzelman, and Chairman of the Dylan Thomas Prize, Peter Stead.

The Dylan Thomas Prize was established in 2006 as one of the world's highest paying literary awards for young writers from around the world to celebrate the legacy of Welsh poet and writer Dylan Thomas who wrote most of his work in his twenties. Since then, the Prize has become an unfailingly reliable guide to the best new literary talent by unearthing and recognising young writers from across the globe.

The winner will receive a cheque for £30,000 and a limited edition bronze cast of Dylan Thomas. The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony in Dylan Thomas' hometown of Swansea in November.

Picture:  Seating Arrangements, by Maggie Shipstead, winner of last year's Dylan Thomas Prize