London: Six shortlisted candidates are today announced for the 2013 Tibor Jones South Asia Prize. Manuscripts by Avni Doshi (Girl in White Cotton), Ayesha Heble (Third Person Singular), Devdan Chaudhuri (Anatomy of Self), Kanza Javed (Ashes, Wine and Dust), Minakshi Thakur (Lovers Like You and I), and Sanjay Lafont (Arjun) have been selected for the shortlist.
More than one hundred manuscripts of full-length novels were submitted for the 2013 prize, the deadline of which was November 12, 2012. The prize is open to unrepresented South Asian writers with a completed draft of an unpublished novel.
The winner will be announced on January 10, 2013 at an award ceremony hosted at The Park Hotel (Kolkata) as part of the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival. The prize includes 1 Lakh Rupees and literary representation by Tibor Jones & Associates. The finalists will also be encouraged to apply for the GBP 10,000 Charles Pick South Asia Fellowship at the University of East Anglia.
Kevin Conroy Scott, Director of Tibor Jones & Associates, said, "We've been pleasantly inundated with submissions for the 2013 prize. The judges certainly have their work cut out for them. We now anxiously await the announcement of the 2013 Winner at the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival."
The panel of judges comprises five esteemed literary personalities: Delhi-based publisher and writer, Urvashi Butalia (chair of the panel); Jon Cook, Professor of Literature at the University of East Anglia; Faiza Sultan Khan, critic and editor at Random House India; Anosh Irani, award-winning Vancouver-based playwright and novelist; and Neel Mukherjee, acclaimed London-based critic and author.
This is the second year of the prize. In its inaugural year, the prize culminated in Srikumar Sen and Rohit Manchanda being announced as joint-winners, splitting the cash prize and both receiving literary representation from Tibor Jones & Associates. Sen's winning manuscript, The Skinning Tree, has since been published by Picador India. The book will be released in India next week.
The prize is supported by the Charles Pick Fellowship, University of East Anglia, Tibor Jones & Associates, Oxford Bookstore, The Park Hotel, and the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival. The mandate of the prize is to encourage emerging, unrepresented writers of South Asian origin, and is unique in that it nurtures new unrecognized talent in an industry that can be difficult to penetrate.