The Rathbones Folio Prize is open to all works of literature written in English and published in the UK. All genres and all forms of literature are eligible, except work written primarily for children. The format of first publication may be print or digital.
The Prize will be awarded in May for books published in the previous calendar year.
Chloe Aridjis is a Mexican writer based in London and the author of three novels: Book of Clouds, which won the Prix du Premier Roman Etranger in France, Asunder, and Sea Monsters (to be published February 2019). She writes for various art journals and was a guest curator at Tate Liverpool. In 2014 she was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, and she has been a judge for the Frieze Writer’s Prize and the White Review Short Story Prize.
Kate Clanchy (chair) grew up in Scotland but now lives in Oxford. She has won a Forward Prize for her poetry, the Writer’s Guild Award for her memoir Antigona and Me and the BBC National Short Story Award. Her novel, Meeting the English, was shortlisted for the Costa Prize. She writes regularly for radio and reviews novels for the Guardian. Kate has taught in schools for 30 years and the acclaimed anthology England, Poems from a School, and her upcoming book of essays, Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me, both draw on this experience. Kate was awarded an MBE in 2018 for services to literature.
Owen Sheers is an author, poet and playwright. Winner of the 2018 Wilfred Owen Poetry award, he has published two collections of poetry, The Blue Book and Skirrid Hill, which won a Somerset Maugham Award. His debut prose work, The Dust Diaries, won the Welsh Book of the Year and was short listed for the RSL Ondaatje Prize. His first novel, Resistance, was translated into eleven languages and adapted into a film. His most recent novel, I Saw A Man, was shortlisted for the Prix Etranger. He has been a judge for the Costa Awards, the Guardian First Book Award, the Dylan Thomas Prize and the BBC Short Story Award. He is currently Professor in Creativity at Swansea University.
The Selection Process
Each year, three or five members of the Academy will be invited to judge the Prize.
This year, judges will consider a total of 60 books, which will be nominated by the Academy. Further books will be called-in from publishers – from these call-ins, the judges can make a total of 20 selections, bringing the total number of books under consideration to 80.
The sole criterion for judgment will be excellence: to identify works of literature in which the subjects being explored achieve their most perfect and thrilling expression.
From these 80 titles a shortlist of eight will be selected by the judges. The winner will be announced at the annual Rathbones Folio Prize ceremony and presented with a cheque for £30,000.
Further information about the Prize can be found in the Rathbones Folio Prize Constitution.