Shortlist announced for Comedy Women in Print Prize


08 June 2020
The shortlisted books show women writers tackling a wide variety of topics with wit and humour

The Comedy Women in Print Prize, which was set up by Helen Lederer last year, is the only UK award for humorous work by women writers.

‘Judging and managing the prize in lock down was interesting - but we got there!' said Helen. 'The 2020 titles reflect a range of surprising heroines that made the judges laugh in different ways. From empowerment to dentistry and chip shops – it’s all here. In an unbelievably good year for witty writing by women we will also present an honorary Game Changer Award, to be unveiled when we announce our winners.’

The shortlist for the Comedy Women in Print Published Novels Prize is:

Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams

Big Girl, Small Town by Michelle Gallen

The Blessed Girl by Angela Makholwa

The Flatshare by Beth O'Leary

Reasons to be Cheerful by Nina Stibbe

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman

Frankissstein by Jeanette Winterson

Marian Keyes, chair of judges for the CWIP Published Novels Prize, said: ‘I am absolutely delighted with our list. The range is glorious – everything from light-hearted commercial fiction to literary fiction – from established names to new talent – and it’s a demonstration of all the different ways in which women can be funny in print. It was a pleasure and very exciting to read all the submissions, and these are shortlists we are very proud of.’

The shortlist for Published Humorous Graphic Novels is:

Sensible Footwear: A Girl's Guide- A graphic guide to lesbian and queer history 1950-2020 by Kate Charlesworth

My Husband is a Cultist by Mei Lian Hoe

Bloodlust and Bonnets by Emily McGovern

Was it... Too Much for You? by Danny Noble

Cassandra Darke by Posy Simmonds

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Stand in Your Power by Rachael Smith

Janet Ellis, chair of the Humorous Graphic Novel Prize, said: ‘The most exciting category of all (it’s new! it’s fresh!) has revealed a joyful abundance of top- notch, screamingly funny graphic novels written by women. Every single one of the longlisted books had the judges in fits of laughter and the shortlist is a proper celebration of the best of them. Provocative, playful, acutely observed and fearless, they tackle a wide range of subjects with a triumphant glee, each one not just a comic adventure but also a work of art.’

The shortlist for Unpublished Comic Novels is:

The Bird in the River by Zahra Barri

Tinker, Tailor, Schoolmum, Spy by Faye Brann

Everything Is Under Control by Annette Gordon

The Lady's Companion by Janey Preger

You Can Drop Me Here by Julia Walter

Second Wife Syndrome by Kathleen Whyman

Fanny Blake, chair of the Unpublished Comic Novels Prize, said: 'In judging this category of the 2020 Comedy Women in Print Prize we are looking for something that’s a little bit different, with a unique spark that sets it apart from the run-of-the-mill. This year’s outstanding entries were united by some great comic writing and a real diversity in setting and characters. They jointly demonstrated that there are plenty of funny females writing today, just waiting to be discovered.'

The winners will be announced on 14 September.

For full details see the website.


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