The prize is open to submissions of work written in English by writers of any nationality or descent based anywhere in the world.
Entries will usually be written by a single author but co-authored texts are permitted if the authors are evenly credited.
The 2023/24 award will focus on work published in the UK between 1 July 2022 and 30 November 2023. To be eligible, a book’s first UK publication date (in hardback, paperback or e-book format) must fall between these dates.
Books can be written in any prose genre, and books that challenge genre are particularly welcome. Works of translation, books for children and poetry are not eligible for the award.
Authors, publishers and agents can submit entries. If an author or agent enters work for the award it will be assumed that she/he does so with the full commitment of the publisher of the book. It is the responsibility of whoever enters the material to ensure that it is eligible.
Books published posthumously are allowed if published within a year of the author’s death.
Self-published books are not eligible and any publisher entering work must be a recognised professional publishing house that publishes a range of authors and titles each year and that distributes these works via recognised channels such as online retailers and through bookshops.
The award is not open to employees of Faber & Faber, New Writing North or members of The Gordon Burn Trust. Current employees and students of Newcastle University are not eligible to enter the prize.
Publishers are reminded that it is their responsibility to ensure that all submitted titles are eligible for the prize.
Submissions received after the stated deadline will not be considered.
New Writing North will make final decisions on eligibility. Their decisions will be final and no communication will be entered into on the subject.
How to enter for the award
Entries must be submitted using an online entry form. You will need to upload a PDF and epub/ebook file of each book being entered, along with a jacket image and press release/AI sheet. Please note that hard copies of entries may be requested at any stage during the judging process, and we will contact you if this is the case.
A publishing house may enter up to eight individual books from each imprint that it runs for consideration for the prize. Authors entering directly may submit one title.
If a publisher makes an entry it is their responsibility to ascertain that the author of the work is aware of the submission and that she/he has given their consent. If the submission is made directly by an author it is their responsibility to ensure that their publisher knows that they have entered.
The deadline for submitting entries to the prize is 3 August 2023.
If you have a query about submissions please email Kathryn Tann ([email protected]).
There is an administration fee of £55 per book (plus VAT) for entering the Gordon Burn Prize. This is payable either via the submission system. This charge is necessary to allow us to cover the costs required to manage the prize and support the processing of entries. There are no further costs for publishers at longlisting or shortlisting stages.
Smaller independent publishers who feel this may prevent them from entering for the prize should contact [email protected] to discuss this further.
The judging process
Specialist independent readers will conduct an initial review of the prize entries before the judging panel selects the longlist for the prize. The judging panel will shortlist for the prize and select the winner.
The judges and prize partners reserve the right to call in any books that they see fit to consider for the prize.
The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence or discussion about the judging process will be entered into.
A longlist of up to 12 books will be announced by December 2023 and at this stage we will require additional paperback or hardback copies of each book.
A shortlist of up to 6 books will be announced by in January 2024. Publishers and authors will be informed in advance. At this stage, we will require further hardback or paperback copies of each book.
The final awards event will take place in Newcastle on 7 March 2024 when the prize will be presented.
Media and communications
All shortlisted authors must be available to participate in media and PR for the prize between the announcement of the shortlist and attend the awards ceremony/take part in a digital equivalent.
Authors and publishers must be willing to provide cover images and extracts of work that can be used on the awards website and associated promotions.
Copies of the book
If a title is shortlisted, we will require ten copies of the book for publicity purposes and review by participating prize reviewers.
Publishers must ensure that copies of their shortlist titles are available for sale in bookshops and to libraries at the time of its announcement (January 2024). The publisher of the winning book must ensure that any reprints of the prize-winning title carry the award’s branding on the front cover.
Conditions of the award
Shortlisted writers must be available to participate in the Gordon Burn Prize awards ceremony in Newcastle either in-person (preferred) or via live video link. The submitting author or their publisher must commit to resourcing the travel and accommodation of the shortlisted writer for this event, especially for those entering from outside of the UK. Shortlisted authors will also be asked to participate in an event in London in the weeks prior to the final ceremony.
Publishers must confirm that the author(s) will be present for the prize ceremony before the shortlist is announced. We reserve the right to withdraw a book from the shortlist before it is announced if the author is not available to take part in the prize-giving event.
We reserve the right to vary the rules and conditions of entry and to make any amendments to the published schedule as are deemed necessary.