Date: 17th November 2007
Graham Mort, Department of English & Creative Writing, has won first prize in the prestigious international writing competition, The Bridport Prize, for his short story, "The Prince". http://www.bridportprize.org.uk/winners.htm
"The Bridport is a prize all serious poets want to win. They know - and know everyone else knows - that the competition is fiercer there than just about anywhere else." - Don Paterson, poetry judge
"The popularity of the Bridport Prize is a tangible reminder that the short story is alive and well." - Tracy Chevalier, short story judge
"Mention the Bridport Prize and the eyes of writers everywhere light up. It's not just the money - though that's not to be sneezed at - it's a prize really worth fighting for in terms of prestige and genuine literary accomplishment.'" - Fay Weldon, patron
Christopher Buehlman wins the £5,000 first prize for poetry
Graham Mort wins the £5,000 first prize for short story
Judging the poetry entries, Poet Don Paterson said, "I was looking for a poem I hadn't read before; one that moved or excited me; and one that, by the time I'd finished it, had dramatically changed the way I think about something, feel towards something or look at something." Don Paterson awarded Christopher Buehlman from St Petersburg, USA, the first prize of £5,000 for his poem 'Wanton'. Second prize of £1,000 was awarded to Caroline Price from Tunbridge Wells, Kent and the third prize of £500 went to Kate Rhodes of Ipswich, Suffolk.
Author Tracy Chevalier judging the short story category said, "To me the most successful stories are those where a character learns something about herself and the world, and I learn alongside. I am also a sucker for a twist - something that jolts me and makes me reconsider the world created in the story and the assumptions I've made."
Tracy Chevalier chose 'The Prince' by Graham Mort from Carnforth, Lancashire for the first prize, winning the writer £5,000. Vanessa Gebbie from Ringmer, East Sussex won the second prize of £1,000 and the third prize of £500 was awarded to Liza Wieland of North Carolina, USA.
Runners-up prizes for poetry were won by Jonathan Asser, Emily Berry, Marianne Burton, Rachel Curzon, Claudia Daventry, Anthony Hughes, Catherine Ormell, Wayne Price, Rodney Pybus, Christopher Stocks. Runners-up prizes for short story were won by Judith Allnatt, Jackie Beacham, Michael Carson, David Grubb, John Haggerty, Huw Lawrence, Toby Litt, D A McIlroy, Kevin Parry, Stuart Tallack.
Judging The Bridport Prize 2008 is David Harsent for poetry and Helen Simpson for short stories.
News website: http://www.bridportprize.org.uk/winners.htm
Associated staff: Graham Mort
Associated departments and research centres: English and Creative Writing