- “Dark Song” by Roberta Dewa
- “Art Zoo” by Paul J. Martin
- “Swimming Lessons” by Douglas Hill
- “Rictus” by Tanvir Bush
- “Isa’s Pitch” by Maureen Cullen
- “The Quarry” by Katherine Davey
- “The Day John Lennon Died” by Raphael Falco
- “A History of Fire” by Gerard McKeown
- “Trespass” by Roland Miles
- “The Fish that was not my Pa” by Meganrose Weddle
“Here are stories of abandonment, exhibitionism, spontaneous combustion, hysteria, people power, reincarnation, cuisine, race relations, orchidaceous tomfoolery and much more. They will take you to hot beaches and deserted nighttime streets, to disputed urban spaces, to an overheated and under-resourced emergency ward, behind the scenes at a fancy restaurant, and to the chill vicinity of deserted lakes and pools. Three are set in America, two in Africa, one each in Wales, Scotland, Ireland, London and darkest Sussex.”
With an introduction by 2017 judge, Lane Ashfeldt
Dr Tanvir Bush is a novelist and film-maker/photographer. Born in London, she lived and worked in Lusaka, Zambia, setting up the Willie Mwale Film Foundation, working with minority communities, street kids and people affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Her feature documentary ‘Choka!- Get Lost!’. was nominated for the Pare Lorenz Award for social activism in film in 2001. She returned to UK to study and write and her first novel Witch Girl was published by Modjaji Books, Cape Town in 2015. She is the designer and facilitator of the Corsham Creative Writing Laboratory initiative and an Associate Lecturer at Bath Spa University in Creative Writing. She is based in Wiltshire with her guide dog and research assistant, Grace.
Maureen Cullen lives in Argyll & Bute. She has been writing poetry and short fiction since 2011 after early retirement from her social work career. In 2016, she was published, along with three other poets, in Primers 1, a collaboration between Nine Arches Press and the Poetry School. She won The Labello Prize for short fiction in 2014, and has stories published in Gem Street, Scribble, Prole, the Hysteria Anthology, the Evesham Anthology, Leicester Writes Anthology, Stories for Homes Volume 2, and online at Ink Tears. Her stories have been longlisted and shortlisted at various competitions.
Raphael Falco is a Professor of English at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County where he held the 2012-2013 Lipitz Professorship of the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. In addition to publishing widely on the early modern period, he writes fiction, plays, and poetry. He lives in New York City.
Katherine Davey was born in Cape Town, South Africa and moved to the UK twice, once temporarily as a teenager and then again to do a post-grad, which she abandoned to work in publishing. She has been writing since she was a child and belongs to the long-established and professionally wonderful writing group called (for reasons she has never understood) Free Lunch, based in Hackney. She lives in Walthamstow, London, and is currently revising a novel for which she is seeking representation.
Roberta Dewa has always written fiction, and in her twenties published three historical novels with Robert Hale. While studying for various degrees she wrote and published poetry and short fiction, including a poetry sequence on the explorer Shackleton and a short story collection, Holding Stones (Pewter Rose Press, 2009). In 2013 she published a memoir, The Memory of Bridges, and a contemporary novel followed: The Esplanade (Weathervane Press, 2014). Since retiring last year from teaching at the University of Nottingham, she has been writing poetry and short stories again, some of it inspired by (but attempting no comparison with) the sublime lyrics of Scott Walker.
Douglas Hill lives in the northeast of Scotland and worked in the regional press as a journalist and editor for many years. Before that he worked as a freelance reporter in Glasgow and wrote features for a number of magazines in the UK and abroad. Born in Scotland, he has also lived and worked in South Africa, Brazil, New Zealand, Spain, and for several years in London. Since devoting more time to writing fiction, he’s been short-listed for a number of competitions, won 2nd place in the Exeter Writer’s competition, and had short stories published in Writer’s Forum.
Paul J. Martin moved to London from Northern California to earn an MA in Novel Writing from City University freeing himself from a high-flying career in the art world to pursue his passion for writing. Residing for many years in American suburbia he is fascinated to know why people live where they do. His work tends towards Suburban Noir, where he delves behind conformist facades and investigates strange tales and complications that lurk behind the mailbox. His first novel ‘When I’m Calling You’ is complete, his second follows close behind and he has a growing catalogue of short fiction from both sides of the Atlantic.
Gerard McKeown is an Irish writer living in London. His work has been featured in 3:AM, The Moth, and Litro, among others. In 2017 he was shortlisted for the Bridport Prize. He is currently seeking representation for his novel ‘Licking The Bowl’.
Roland Miles has worked as an English and Drama teacher and as a dealer in secondhand books. He has an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Sussex. He is the author of Chaucer the Actor: The Canterbury Tales as Performance Art. Two completed young adult novels and a play sit unpublished in a box beneath his bed. A number of his short stories and flash fictions have been placed in competitions. He is currently close to finishing a collection of short stories about life in schools, of whichTrespass is one. He lives by the castle in the Sussex town of Lewes, in a house built in the fifteenth century, once occupied by a bucket maker.
Meganrose Weddle has a BA in English Literature from the University of Cambridge and is studying for her MA in Creative Writing at Birkbeck, University of London. Her poetry has been published in creative journal Notes and she was shortlisted for the Liars’ League Women & Girls event, for her short story ‘No Strings Attached’. She lives and works in London and hopes, one day, that she can call herself a ‘full-time writer’.