The authors made the 2023 longlist for the Swansea University Dylan Thomas Prize
Irish writers Sara Baume and Ciarán O’Rourke feature on the longlist for one of the world’s most prestigious literary awards for young talent – the Swansea University Dylan Thomas Prize.
The prize, worth £20,000 (€22.7k), celebrates fiction in all its forms and is awarded for the best published literary work in the English language, written by an author aged 39 or under.
Sara, who is based in Skibbereen, West Cork, is nominated for her stunning third novel Seven Steeples, which follows a young couple’s attempts to disappear from society after they relocate to the Irish countryside. She is the author of four books, which have been widely translated and won awards such as the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, the Rooney Prize for Literature and the E.M. Forster Award.
Meanwhile, Ciarán, who is based in Galway, is up for his daring second poetry collection Phantom Gang, which considers civilisational violence in a variety of contexts, not least the inequalities of Irish history. His first collection, The Buried Breath, was published by The Irish Pages Press in 2018 and highly commended by the Forward Foundation for Poetry the following year.
Other authors on the longlist – which features just 12 writers – are from the UK, Nigeria, Kenya, Somalia, Lebanon and Australia. You can view the entire longlist here.
The shortlist of six titles will be announced on Thursday, March 23 and the winner will be revealed on May 14. The panel of judges is chaired by Books Editor for BBC Radio Di Speirs, alongside Welsh author Jon Gower, American author Maggie Shipstead, British poet Rachel Long, and Nepali-Indian author Prajwal Parajuly.