NEW WELSH WRITING AWARDS 2019: Shortlists Announced

The Fifth Year of the Prize

gray concrete building bear body of water

Photo of Conwy Castle by Lisa Fotios on

The shortlists of the New Welsh Writing Awards 2019 were revealed last night to an enthusiastic audience at the Bookshop in the Aberystwyth Arts Centre. This year entries were accepted in two categories: the Aberystwyth University Prize for a Dystopian Novella (in association with Aberystwyth University) and the Rheidol Prize for Writing with a Welsh Theme or Setting.

The competition was created in 2015 to advocate the best short-form writing in the English language. Three women writers from Wales appear on this year’s shortlist: Rosey Brown, JL George and Rhiannon Lewis – all of them presenting dystopian novellas.

The shortlisted and highly commended writers are listed below in alphabetical order by the author’s last name:



Rosey Brown (Cardiff, Wales) – Adrift
JL George (Pontypool, Wales) – The Word
Rhiannon Lewis (Abergavenny, Wales) – The Significance of Swans


Dewi Heald (Llantwit Major, Wales) – Me, I’m Like Legend, I Am
Thomas Pitts (Newbury, England) – The Chosen
Heledd Williams (China) – Water, Water, Nowhere…



Peter Goulding (Thetford, England) – On Slate (Non-fiction)
Richard John Parfitt (Penarth, Wales) – Tales from the Riverbank (Non-fiction)
Sarah Tanburn (Penarth, Wales) – Hawks of Dust and Wine (Fiction)


Marilyn Barlow (New Quay, Wales) – The Smallholding I Knew (Non-fiction)
Mark Blayney (Cardiff, Wales) – The Devil Next Door (Fiction)
Elizabeth Griffiths (Lincolnshire, England) – Closing the Gap (Non-fiction)

The Awards were judged by New Welsh Review editor Gwen Davies (with assistance from students at Aberystwyth University’s Department of English and Creative Writing) – she was joined by co-judge Cynan Jones for the Rheidol Prize. The winners in each category will be announced on Friday 24th May at the Summer House in the Hay Festival.

The Awards are open to all writers based in the UK and Ireland plus those who live overseas who have been educated in Wales.

Dewithon Logo Daffs

Categories: Literary Awards

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11 replies

  1. Woohoo, any here you’ve read and would want to vote for?xx

    • Sorry Caz, I didn’t realise I hadn’t responded to your question. As far as I’m aware, none of these titles have yet been published. I’m not sure that every one of them will see the light of day. Hopefully, having got to this stage in the competition, a publisher will pounce on them. 🤗

  2. It will be interesting to see how these authors’ careers progress in the future.

  3. I love a novella and I often feel they’re unfairly overlooked in prizes, so it’s great to see a specific prize for the form here!

    • I’m away in Mid Wales for a few days and my laptop (containing all my latest work) has died. There’s not much I can do about it until I return home. In the meantime I’m picking up the odd message on my phone – so please forgive me for not being around much to read your posts. There will be no WUTW today, I’m afraid. It’s such a nuisance. Anyhow, keep up the splendid work, Madame B. I’ll catch up with your novella reviews asap. 😊

  4. I like the category of “highly commended”: it sounds SO impressive put that way!


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