Lots of us have been wishing and asking for this, and now it’s arrived. Thank you, Universe. It doesn’t make up for all the other insanity you’ve been hurling at us recently, but it’s a good start: the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation, a brand-new yearly award sponsored and administered by the University of Warwick that will honor an outstanding work in translation by a female author (gender of the translator irrelevant). The prize is open to works of many sorts: novels, novellas, collections of short stories, collections of poetry, book-length works of literary non-fiction or book-length works of fiction for children or young adults. The only catch is that to qualify, a work has to have been published in the UK or Ireland between (for this year’s competition) April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2017. Previous publications in other parts of the world do not affect a work’s eligibility. The prize comes with a purse of £1000, to be split evenly between translator and author (or awarded entirely to the translator in the case of an author no longer living) and will be judged by a three-person panel. I just want to say how thrilled I am to see such a prize in existence, an acknowledgment of the way in which the international publishing world still (after all these years and conferences) skews solidly male. Celebrating the work of outstanding women writers is an excellent way to chip away at that boulder. I’m hoping they’ll publish some nice juicy longlists and shortlists. And I hope that some U.S.-based institution will soon take up the banner (PEN? ALTA?) and offer a similar prize for a work published in the U.S.
Entries for the Warwick prize can be submitted by U.K. and Irish publishers between April 3 and July 3, 2017. Application details here. Brava to everyone involved in its creation!