Skip to Content

Nan Shepherd Prize for Nature Writing

Information
Closing date: 
10 September 2019
Entry: 
Open to previously unpublished and self-published writers based in the UK No entry fee
Prize: 
An advance of £10,000, editorial mentoring and the option of literary representation with Jenny Brown Associates

A new literary prize for underrepresented voices in nature writing

Canongate has launched the Nan Shepherd Prize for Nature Writing, as Oscar-nominated actor Tilda Swinton records the audiobook of Shepherd's The Living Mountain (Canongate)

The Nan Shepherd Prize is a new competition to find the next voice in nature writing. It aims not only to celebrate nature writing but provide an inclusive platform for new and emerging nature writers from underrepresented backgrounds.

The winner of The Nan Shepherd Prize for Nature Writing will receive a book deal with Canongate - including editorial mentoring and an advance of £10,000 - and the option of literary representation with Jenny Brown Associates

Literary fiction, crime writing and writing for children; non-fiction: biography, history, sport, music popular culture. Also adult fiction and general non-fiction. No poetry, science fiction, fantasy or academic.

Represents children's writers and illustrators. No reading fee. See website for submission guidelines.

Submissions by email: Prefers to receive submissions by email. You will find their individual preferences and email addresses listed on their Agents page. Please email your submission directly to the agent you feel will be most compatible with your work. They read all submissions made in order of receipt. Please note that they will only respond to submissions if they wish to read more. If you have not heard back within eight weeks then you can assume that they do not feel that the work is right for the agency.

Submissions by post: Their strong preference is for submission by email, but if this is not possible, then send a hard copy to your preferred agent at Jenny Brown Associates, 33 Argyle Place, Edinburgh EH9 1JT. They will only respond if they wish to see more. Unfortunately they are unable to return material submitted, and their policy is to recycle all materials.

For fiction: send the first 50 pages (no more) and a synopsis in a single document, with a covering letter (see below).

For non-fiction: email a proposal and short example of the proposed work - a sample chapter, for instance. Please include a short note on the competing or comparable literature stating, where possible, author, title, publisher and publication date. It would be helpful to have an overview of possible marketing outlets and a biographical note outlining your background, training and experience.

For children's: Does not represent poetry or plays.

All submissions: Please write a covering letter in the body of the email giving an account of the background of the book and your writing career to date. If you have been referred to us by a publishing or personal contact then make this clear. If you have had previous correspondence with one of their agents please mention this. They appreciate knowing if your project has been sent to or is being considered by other agents or publishers.

Founded 2002

.

The Nan Shepherd Prize opened for submissions on 24 June 2019.

Nan Shepherd is one of our most beloved authors and while her classic of nature writing The Living Mountain took three decades to first find a publisher, today the book is recognised as a masterpiece and Nan is inspiring a new generation of writers. We felt that a prize named after her was a fitting way to honour her legacy.

At Canongate, we have a track record of publishing great nature writing from established voices such as Annie Dillard, Dan Richards, John Lister-Kaye and Nan Shepherd, of course, as well as launching new writers like Amy Liptrot, Charlotte Runcie and Kerri ní Dochartaigh.

More details

 

Closing date: 
10 September 2019
Entry: 
Open to previously unpublished and self-published writers based in the UK No entry fee
Prize: 
An advance of £10,000, editorial mentoring and the option of literary representation with Jenny Brown Associates