Today, 22nd February, the Comedy Women in Print (CWIP) Prize announced their 2023 shortlists. Setting the gold standard for creative and witty writing this year's shortlists circle the globe, and the humour in these titles has the power to travel to new audiences. There's plenty of room for fun and light with absurd, modern, rude and eminently relatable humour while also providing a connection to the darker side of the world we live in. Amongst the witty writing is compelling demonstrations of the ways in which women express humour, grief, sex, guilt, class, race, and workplace sexism.

The Published Novel category is being judged by a panel of published authors, led by Angie Greaves and includes Anita Dobson, Susie Blake, Michelle De Swarte, Arabella Weir and the 2021 winner of the published prize Jesse Q. Sutanto.

From a longlist of 16 titles, the judges have picked eight novels to form the shortlist. 

The 2022/2023 Published Shortlisted titles are:

Love Marriage by Monica Ali

"Love, desire, fractured families and long-buried secrets - this exceptional novel explores modern Britain with wit, warmth and truly wonderful storytelling" commented LoveReading's Joanne Owen.

The Startup Wife by Tahmima Anam

"A brilliant, brave, cool and clever book about the highs and lows of juggling a startup and married life which I know will be one of my favourite reads of the year" shared LoveReading MD Deborah Maclaren.

Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus

Awarded a LoveReading Star Book, Joanne Owen commented: "Fizzing with feminist humour and romance, this radiant, life-affirming novel sees a brilliant chemist and single mother switch to presenting a hit TV cooking show that challenges 1960s social norms." 

Impossible by Sarah Lotz 

"A gloriously inventive relationship story guaranteed to take you on a surprising and emotional rollercoaster" gushed LoveReading's Content Manager Charlotte Walker.

The Exhibitionist by Charlotte Mendelson

"Fiercely provocative, wryly amusing, and just a little bit heart-breaking, this novel screams out into the void of family life with real power" according to LoveReading's Liz Robinson.

Wahala by Nikki May 

"This bona fide, read-beyond-your-bedtime page-turner takes in class, colourism, sisterhood, dark secrets and manipulation through the lives of three thirty-something, Anglo-Nigerian Londoners." Joanne Owen

Factory Girls by Michelle Gallen

"Another authentic, funny, fierce and unforgettable book by Gallen who is fast becoming a must-read author for me, you can't beat her sharp observational humour, great wit and her ability to create real characters you fall head over heels with." Deborah Maclaren

The Lock In by Phoebe Luckhurst 

"Instead of a locked-room mystery, Luckhurst's debut is a locked-room romance" teases Lily Lindon

Comedy Women In Print is the brainchild of comedian, author and actress Helen Lederer. Its aim is to recognise, celebrate and encourage witty women authors. Now in its fourth successful year, the CWIP Prize is a platform for both aspiring and established witty women writers. 

In a special LoveReading LitFest Event to celebrate the CWIP Published Prize Shortlist LoveReading MD and LitFest Director Deborah Maclaren chats to Helen about the 2022/23 Prize, how CWIP came about and how it’s evolved over the years. Deborah also chats to the wonderful Jesse Q. Sutanto, winner of the 2021 Published Prize about what it meant to her, and we hear from Lead Judge Angie Greaves about this year’s Shortlist. And what a beauty of a Shortlist it is. If you love funny fiction and fantastic females…what are you waiting for? Dive in…

The winner will be announced at an event on Monday the 17th April 2023 and will recieve a cash prize of £3000 from ALCS. This year's runner up will recieve £1000.

The Unpublished Comedy Novel category awards a work of at least 80,000 words with a publishing contract and £5,000 advance from HarperFiction. The unpublished runner-up receives a place on the University of Hertfordshire MA course in Creative Writing or Writing Mentorship.

Shortlisted for the Unpublished Novel category are: While He Looked at the Moon by Christina Carty; Death and Her Life by Veronika Dapunt; Miss Merriman Regrets by Louise Jensen; Swiping at 60 by Niloufar Lamakan; Happy Above Use by Silvia Saunders; When Stars Align by Gemma Tizzard; Second Chance by Joanna Waldron; and Godfellas by Nicola Whyte.