Celebrating fiction at its most novel, the Goldsmiths Prize, in partnership with the New Statesman has been running for over 10 years. The prize rewards fiction that goes beyond the traditional mould of the novel form, breaking it and extending its possibilities. This annual prize is given to a book that is selected by the panel of judges for being genuinely novel, a book that embodies the spirit of invention and that characterises the genre at its best.
This year the judging panel have narrowed down more than 100 submissions into a six-strong shortlist of mould-breaking books, with the six authors now in the running for the £10,000 literary prize. Previous winners include Eimar McBride (A Girl is A Half-Formed Thing), Ali Smith (How to Be Both), Isabel Waidner (Sterling Karat Gold). Last year, Natasha Soobramanien and Luke Williams were the first collaborative winners of the Goldsmiths Prize.
The judging panel for 2023 is formed by authors Helen Oyeyemi and Maddie Mortimer; Ellen Peirson-Hagger from the New Statesman, and Tom Lee, lecturer in Creative Writing at Goldsmiths, University of London. Dr Tom Lee is this year's Chair of Judges and when sharing his thoughts on the shortlist he said: "From the 107 books submitted for the Goldsmiths Prize 2023, the judges have chosen a shortlist that more than meets the Prize’s mission to celebrate fiction that pushes the boundaries of what the novel can do.
What struck us was the sheer ambition and invention on display in these six wildly different books. From a wickedly funny and subversive journey through 1960’s counterculture to a multi-voiced millennia straddling account of a saint and the cathedral built to honour him; from a story of revolutionary France that subverts all the rules of historical fiction to engage explicitly with our contemporary moment to a searing and beautiful account of marriage and loss in the fog and drama of the Lake District; from a mind-bending queer coming of age novel set in a limbo-like world of lost dreams and disappointments to work that uses a minute focus on a day in the life of a woman and her baby to perform a profound meditation on the idea of the novel itself.
This is a shortlist that shows the novel – that most slippery and vital of forms – continuing to morph and reinvent itself in ways that surprise and delight us.”
Sharing his thoughts, the Executive Editor, Culture at the New Statesman, Tom Gatti says: "This year’s Goldsmiths judges have produced yet another intriguing, invigorating shortlist. The New Statesman is delighted to continue its association with this agenda-setting prize."
The Shortlist of the Goldsmiths Prize 2023 are:
Lori & Joe by Amy Arnold
The Long Form by Kate Briggs
Never Was by Gareth H. Gavin
Man Eating Typewriter by Richard Milward
Cuddy by Benjamin Myers
The Future Future by Adam Thirlwell
The winner of the Goldsmiths Prize 2023 will be announced on Wednesday 8th November 2023.
Discover all six books in this year's shortlist below and not only will you save 10% when you shop with us but you'll be helping to get children reading by donating up to 25% to a school of your choice.