Publishing Prize

The Shortlist

Finlay Lloyd Publishers and the 20/40 Judging Panel are delighted to announce the Shortlist for 2023:

Roger Averill Slippage

Rebecca Burton Ravenous Girls

Rachel Flynn New Moon Rising

Kim Kelly Ladies’ Rest and Writing Room

Jane Skelton Breathing Water

Olivia De Zilva Hold on Tight

Finlay Lloyd publisher, Julian Davies, commented:

‘Finlay Lloyd and the 20/40 judging panel congratulate the shortlisted authors and celebrate their achievement. The panel’s process of evaluating the work of the aspiring writers who entered 20/40 was a wonderfully collaborative and thoroughly enjoyable one. The works were judged blind, so it was both interesting and pleasing to learn that five of the six shortlisted entries are by women.'

 

‘Of course, the entries in a publishing prize are all unpublished pieces and are therefore unavailable to the public. That’s exactly why we’ve set up 20/40—to provide an avenue for writers to try their hand at works of this length, where two of them will turn into books each year. For the four authors who aren’t published, we hope being shortlisted will be a fillip and incentive to keep developing their writing.’

The panel was engaged by the breadth of approaches in the shortlist.

Roger Averill’s Slippage

reveals with insight, and comedic touches, the kind of accidental bungles, coincidences and misunderstandings that can so readily complicate contemporary human relationships.

Rebecca Burton's Ravenous Girls

is a tender and lively exploration of the tensions and growing distance between two teenage sisters in the 1980s—the elder burdened by anorexia, the younger by self-doubt.

Rachel Flynn’s New Moon Rising

empathetically follows a young, pregnant woman as she escapes the repressive values of a country town in the 1960s through to her attempts to make a new life in the city. 

Kim Kelly’s Ladies’ Rest and Writing Room

rushes vibrantly into the bustling streets of Sydney in the 1920s where two young women, each having suffered devastating loss, are thrown together by unexpected circumstances.

Jane Skelton’s Breathing Water

explores a ‘supra-real’ world, closely parallel to our own, where an insecure young man is lured, by the promise of work, to a spa hidden away in the mountains.

Olivia De Zilva’s Hold on Tight 

has a feisty teenager, a misfit in her own family and an outsider in her last year of school, turn her acerbically amused gaze on her ‘cool’ contemporaries.

A note on the 20/40 process

Due to the editing and production process, it is intrinsic to a publishing prize that when the shortlisted entries are announced, the winning books are already in the final stages of being prepared for publication. Announcing the short list is a form of recognition of the efforts of those writers and is intended as an encouragement for their future efforts to be published.

In 2023, the first year of the prize, there was a low number of non-fiction entries of quality, with the result that the judging panel has chosen a shortlist of fiction entries. As awareness of 20/40 grows, Finlay Lloyd looks forward to more non-fiction entries of a quality that demands a place among the shortlist and winning books.

The judging panel for the 2023 20/40 Prize was Katia Ariel, Christine Balint, John Clanchy, Julian Davies and Stefanie Markidis. 

The 20/40 Publishing Prize is overseen by an

expert advisory board:

 

Dr Christine Balint

John Clanchy

Donna Ward

Dr Meredith McKinney

Emeritus Professor Kevin Brophy AM

 

With assistance from

Strategic Adviser: Dr Bidda Jones AM

Technical Adviser: James Smith

The 20/40 Publishing Prize is overseen by an expert advisory board:

 

Dr Christine Balint

John Clanchy

Donna Ward

Dr Meredith McKinney

Emeritus Professor Kevin Brophy AM

 

With assistance from

Strategic Adviser: Dr Bidda Jones AM

Technical Adviser: James Smith

About Finlay Lloyd

About Finlay Lloyd

Finlay Lloyd is an independent, non-profit publisher, founded in 2005, dedicated to encouraging imaginative and challenging writing, to subtly innovative design and to celebrating the pleasures of print on paper in an electronic age. To find out more, visit our website.

Finlay Lloyd is an independent, non-profit publisher, founded in 2005, dedicated to encouraging imaginative and challenging writing, to subtly innovative design and to celebrating the pleasures of print on paper in an electronic age. To find out more, visit our website.

E: finlaylloyd@sharewater.net

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