Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2014 Shortlist
Ikanre, Adelehin Ijasan (Nigeria)
Adelehin Ijasan grew up in Lagos, Nigeria. He is a medical doctor and ophthalmology resident. His first published work appeared in The Deepening. Subsequently, his short fiction has featured in magazines and websites including Membra Disjecta, Everyday Fiction (The Best of Everyday Fiction), The Tiny Globule, Takahe and On the Premises – where he came second in the short story competition in 2008.
All Them Savages, Michelle Sacks (South Africa)
Michelle Sacks is a South African-born writer who has lived in Cape Town, Dublin and Frankfurt. She holds a Master’s Degree in English from the University of Cape Town, and has been shortlisted twice for the PEN Prize for Southern African Fiction. Her short stories have been published in the 2007 and 2011 editions of the JM Coetzee-judged anthology, African Pens, as well as in New Contrast and Akashic Books. In summer 2014, she will take part in the Takt A.I.R. Artist’s Residency in Berlin, where she will work on completing a collection of short stories, and beginning her first novel.
Let’s Tell This Story Properly, Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi (Uganda)
Jennifer Makumbi is a Ugandan novelist and short story writer. She studied Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University. In 2012, her short story The Accidental Seaman was published in Moss Side Stories by Crocus Books. In 2013, her poems, Free Range, and Father cried in the kitchen were published in Sweet Tongues. Jennifer also has a PHD in Creative Writing from Lancaster University and her doctoral novel, The Kintu Saga, won the Kwani Manuscript Project in 2013. The novel will be published in the summer of 2014 under the title Kintu. Jennifer teaches Creative Writing at Lancaster University and is currently working on her second novel, Nnambi.
Grandmother, Yu-Mei Balasingamchow (Singapore)
Yu-Mei Balasingamchow lives in Singapore and writes about history, travel and culture in Asia. She is the co-author of the award-winning non-fiction title, Singapore: A Biography, which received a gold prize at the Asia Pacific Publishers Association Awards in 2010. It was also named a Choice Outstanding Academic Title in the same year. Her first published short story, Lighthouse, was selected for the inaugural Epigram Books Collection of Best New Singaporean Short Stories in 2013. She is working on her first novel, with funding from Singapore’s National Arts Council.
A Day in the Death, Sara Adam Ang (Singapore)
Sara Adam Ang is a recent graduate of the National University of Singapore, majoring in History. Sara has had a keen interest in writing fiction for many years. As an emerging writer keen to make her mark in the literary world, the shortlisting of A Day in the Death, one of her first stories, is a major milestone in her career. She is in the process of seeking out her next writing challenge.
Canada and Europe
The Night of Broken Glass, Jack Wang (Canada)
Jack Wang grew up in Vancouver, Canada. He earned a B.Sc. from the University of Toronto, an MFA in creative writing from the University of Arizona, and a Ph.D. in English with an emphasis in creative writing from Florida State University. His fiction has appeared in Joyland Magazine, and he and his twin brother are the creators of Cozy Classics, an internationally-acclaimed children’s board book series. Jack is the recipient of a 2014 Tucson Festival of Books Literary Award. He is currently working as an Associate Professor in the Department of Writing at Ithaca College, New York.
On The Other Side, Idrissa Simmonds (Canada)
Idrissa Simmonds grew up in Vancouver, Canada, in a Jamaican and Haitian household. She is a writer and organisational strategist with a focus on education, diversity, and human capital development. She is the recipient of multiple fellowships and is the 2013 winner of the Crab Creek Review Poetry Award. In 2005, she founded and co-edited the anthology We Have a Voice: An Anthology of African and Caribbean Student Writing. Her writing has appeared in magazines and anthologies across British Columbia, Caribbean and West Africa. Her website www.ineslouise.com profiles women of colour globally who are using their lives to create change within their communities. She is also the curator and chef of the literary and food salon, Brunch and Word.
Agnes Agnes Agnes, Luiza Sauma (United Kingdom)
Luiza Sauma was born in Rio de Janeiro and raised in London from the age of four. After studying English at the University of Leeds, she worked as a journalist at the Independent on Sunday for several years; she has also written for the Guardian, the Independent and Dazed & Confused. She completed an MA in Creative and Life Writing at Goldsmiths, where she won the Pat Kavanagh Award, and is currently working on her first novel, Bethlehem, which is set between Rio de Janeiro, London and the Amazon.
Household Gods, Tracy Fells (United Kingdom)
Tracy Fells was born in Devon and now lives in West Sussex. She is a full-time writer of fiction and drama. Her short stories and flash fiction have been published in national magazines and anthologies, both online and in print. Tracy’s fiction and drama has recently made shortlists for the HE Bates Short Story Prize 2013 and Hysteria 2013. She is currently planning a collection of short stories, working on a novel and studying for an MA in Creative Writing at Chichester University.
Killing Time, Lucy Caldwell (United Kingdom)
Lucy Caldwell was born in Belfast in 1981. She is the author of three novels, several stage plays and radio dramas. Her writing has won numerous awards, including the George Devine Award, the Imison Award, the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature. Her latest novel, All the Beggars Riding, was selected for Belfast’s and Derry-Londonderry’s One City One Book initiative in 2013. She is currently working on her fourth novel and her debut collection of short stories.
Cowboy, Helen Klonaris (Bahamas)
Helen Klonaris is a Bahamian writer of Greek descent. She earned her BA in religion at Wesleyan University, and her MFA in Writing and Conciousness from New College of California. She is co-founder and co-director of the Bahamas Writers Summer Institute, and lives between the Bahamas and the Bay Area, California, where she teaches creative writing.
She is co-editor of the forthcoming anthology Writing the Walls Down, and published in numerous journals and anthologies, including SX Salon, The Caribbean Writer, Tongues of the Ocean, Poui, ProudFlesh, Calyx, and A Sudden and Violent Change. She is due to complete a collection of short stories, And The Bird Boy Sang.
Sending for Chantal, Maggie Harris (Guyana)
Maggie Harris is a Guyanese-born author who migrated to the UK in 1971. She holds a BA Honours Degree in African/Caribbean studies and an MA in Post-Colonial Studies from Kent University. She won the Guyana Prize for Literature in 2000 for her poetry collection, Limbolands. Other collections include From Berbice to Broadstairs, After a Visit to a Botanical Garden and Sixty Years of Loving (Cane Arrow Press). She has written a number of short stories, including the collection Canterbury Tales on Cockcrow Morning, (Cultured Llama Press), and her own memoir, Guyana Kiskadee Girl.
Miss Annie Cooks Fish, Charmaine Rousseau (Trinidad and Tobago)
Charmaine Rousseau is a Trinidad-born writer. She has previously worked as an English teacher, newspaper editor and reviewer. She is the author of two novels, Café au Lait and Give Me the Night, both published under the pen name Liane Spicer, and her short story Magic Island appeared in the July 2013 issue of St. Somewhere Literary Journal. Her works-in-progress span several genres, from a memoir on raising her own son, to a mystery series set in a fictitious Caribbean island, a historical novel, and a speculative short story.
The Dog and the Sea, Lucy Treloar (Australia)
Lucy Treloar was born in Malaysia and attended schools in Melbourne, England and Sweden. A graduate of the University of Melbourne and RMIT’s Professional Writing and Editing program, Lucy is a writer, editor and creative writing teacher working in Australia and in Cambodia, where she has lived for a number of years. Lucy’s short fiction has appeared in Best Australian Short Stories 2013, Overland, Sleepers and Seizure. She is also the recipient of an Asialink Writer’s Residency and the 2012 Writing Australia Unpublished Manuscript Award. Her novel Salt Creek – currently in development – was recently signed by Picador.
Monkey Boy, Janine Mikosza (Australia)
Janine Mikosza grew up in various cities in Australia and England and now lives and writes fiction in Melbourne. Her stories have been published in literary journals and shortlisted for national and international awards, including the Fish and Bristol Short Story Prizes. She holds a PhD in Sociology from the University of Queensland and has worked as a photomedia artist and academic. She is currently working on her debut novel, The Accident.
Hummingbird, Daniel Anders (Australia)
Daniel Anders was born in America, moving to Australia aged seven where he became naturalised in 2004. After university, Daniel embarked upon a writing course as well as securing a role at his local bookstore. As a new writer just entering the literary scene, this is the first writing competition Daniel has entered.
Playing the Stringless Guitar, Michael Hunt (Australia)
Michael Hunt lives with a congenital vision impairment which fuels his love of language and music, and gives him a somewhat different perspective of the world. He writes short stories, articles and essays on widely divergent themes and topics, which explore the diversity of humanity. Many have been published, awarded prizes, or broadcast. He also composes music, plays double bass with his quartet ‘Innerstrings’, and runs a small recording studio where he produces soundtracks, demo’s and political satire.
Tenure, Julian Novitz (New Zealand)
Julian Novitz is a short story writer and novelist from New Zealand. He currently lives in Melbourne, Australia, where he is a Lecturer in writing at the Swinburne University of Technology. His latest novel, Little Sister, was published by Random House in 2012. His first award-winning collection of short fiction, My Real Life and Other Stories, was followed 2006 by his first novel, Holocaust Tours. Julian won the 2008 Katherine Mansfield Short Story Award for his story Three Couples.
Rhododendrons in Mist, David Kerkt (New Zealand)
David Herkt is a New Zealand-born writer who studied at the University of Melbourne, Australia. He has had a varied career, working as a programme director for various Australian HIV/AIDS organisations before returning to New Zealand to work in television production. He has won two Qantas Film and Television/New Zealand Screen Awards for his work and his fiction, factual, and review work has been published in a number of Australian and New Zealand media outlets.