A Grand Day Out – Maria C. McCarthy wins the Tom-Gallon Trust Award

July 24th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

Maria C. McCarthy (left) with Michele Roberts at Society of Authors' Awards Party 2015

Maria C. McCarthy (left) with Michele Roberts at Society of Authors’ Awards Party 2015

All three Cultured Llama editors had a grand day out at the Society of Authors’ Awards Party on 25 June. Maria C. McCarthy, poetry and fiction editor and author of strange fruits and As Long as it Takes, had known for several weeks that she had won the 2015 Tom-Gallon Trust Award for her short story ‘More Katharine than Audrey’, but was sworn to secrecy until the awards party. She invited managing editor (and husband) Bob Carling and non-fiction editor Anne-Marie Jordan to share in her success at a glittering evening at the Army and Navy Club, Pall Mall, London. Maria received an award of £1000 from Sarah Waters, and rubbed shoulders with writers such as Philip Pullman, Michele Roberts, Lady Antonia Fraser, Daljit Nagra, Patience Agbabi and Joanne Harris.

Maria says:

It was the poshest do I have ever been to, in a beautiful venue, and surrounded by people whose names I had seen on book covers. Highlights of the evening were talking to Philip Pullman about my winning story, and having a long chat with Joanne Harris about our mutual love of short stories; we both loved Oscar Wilde’s fairytales when we were children. So many people I spoke to agreed that short stories are difficult to master, and that they are underrated as a literary form. I am still trying to process the win and the wonderful evening, but it really is true.

Here is what the judges had to say about the winning story:

The writer weaves a sensual, tactile, restrained and ultimately very stylish story of loss cut through with make-belief. Because the writing is so clean, and the handling of pace so clever, the story is allowed to tell itself. It’s an unusual, rich and extremely satisfying picture of lives not lived, but ‘dreamed of’. Eleanor Dymott

Impressively compressed. Aamer Hussein

‘More Katharine than Audrey’ was first published on Writers’ Hub along with a blog piece about how Maria came to write the story: From Norah to Noreen: on writing ‘More Katharine than Audrey’. The story also appears in Maria’s collection of linked short stories, As Long as it Takes.

What is even more amazing is that TWO Cultured Llama authors have now won the Tom-Gallon Trust Award: Emma Timpany won it in 2011. Her debut collection of stories has just been published and is available here: The Lost of Syros.

Each story collection costs £10 plus p&p; free p&p if you buy more than one book, so why not buy both As Long as it Takes and The Lost of Syros?

Scottish poets reviewed and interviewed

July 13th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

Short of Breath Front Cover 031114Short of Breath by Vivien Jones is reviewed by Thomas Clark in The Eildon Tree, 26

And this is strong poetry, incidentally, spare and unsentimental in its handling of the passage of time. Clarity is very often the first casualty of modern poetry, but these are poems which pass straight through the eye and into the mind. Not simple, I should say, but works which honour to the utmost what should surely always be the writer’s primary duty – to take the reader with them as they go. Vivien Jones takes us along with her everywhere she travels, and the places we go with her are well worth the visiting.

You can read the full review, alongside a review of Julian Colton’s Cold Light of Morning, in The Eildon Tree, 26, here as a PDF: Eildon_Tree_Final_low_res

Go to the books’ pages to buy for £8 each (plus p&p), or buy both and postage and packing is free: Short of BreathCold Light of Morning

Whilst we’re with our Scottish and Scotland-based poets (a growing presence in the Cultured Llama stable), here’s an interview with Gordon Meade,whose Les Animots: A Human Bestiary is forthcoming in September 2015, poetry with wonderful illustrations by Douglas Robertson. Gordon’s collection Sounds of the Real World is available for £8 (plus p&p), or with free p&p if you buy two or more books.

The Lost of Syros

July 13th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

Front Cover The Lost of Syros 9780993211928 Hi-ResThe Lost of Syros is a debut collection of short stories by award-winning writer Emma Timpany. These are stories with an international flavour; a treat for summer reading and beyond.

… revelations come unexpectedly: in a shower of gold on a snow-covered volcano in Antarctica; at a graffiti-scarred Aboriginal sacred site; in a mouthful of cake. Precise and delicately written, these stories are little windows into life.

And here’s what Rupert Wallis, author of The Dark Inside, has to say about the collection:

These poignant stories are so skilfully constructed they draw you effortlessly into different times and places. Precise, yet delicately written, they are little windows into life, showing you things to think on long after you have finished reading them. This is a superb debut collection that will resonate with me for a long time to come.

You can order The Lost of Syros direct from Cultured Llama for £10 plus p&p. Add in any other Cultured Llama book to your order, and postage and packing is free. Go to the book’s page to order: The Lost of Syros

Emma Timpany is launching The Lost of Syros at A Curious Hall, Falmouth on 4 August. For more details, go to Events.

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