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Cathy Galvin shortlisted for Inaugral Spread the Word Life Writing Prize

Huge congratulations to Word Factory’s Founder and Director, Cathy Galvin, who has been shortlisted for the inaugural Spread The Word Life Writing Prize in association with Goldsmiths Writers’ Centre for her piece, ‘The Missing Sixth’. The announcement was made this evening at a special event at Goldsmiths in London.

Selected for the shortlist from 700 entries, ‘The Missing Sixth’ is part of a longer work set in England and Ireland, exploring her mother’s short life, and sparked judges Blake Morrison, Dr Katy Massey, and Margaret Stead’s fascination.

“The theme is intriguing and original. The prose aspires to poetry at times. A powerful piece,” said Morrison.

The news follows on the heels of another shortlisting – Galvin is one of five poets shortlisted for the Listowel Writers’ Week Poetry Collection competition in Ireland, where the judge was Thomas McCarthy.

“I would like to thank the Word Factory – and Zoe Gilbert’s critiquing group,” said Galvin. “Reading an extract aloud to my Word Factory friends inspired me to enter the life writing prize and we now have an amazing network of writers sharing work with each other.”

The inaugural Spread the Word Life Writing Prize was awarded to Jon Paul Roberts for his essay ‘1955 – 2012’. The judges praised the essay for its “elegance, restraint and honesty” in telling the story of the author’s relationship with, and the death of, his father.

Eleven other writers were also celebrated, including two highly commended writers: Claire Lynch for ‘The Year Dot’ and Kerri ni Dochitargh for ‘Mudlarking’ who both receive £500 and mentoring from Amy Liptrot and Hannah Lowe. The other shortlisted pieces are: Kathy Hoyle for ‘Scab’ and Gill Haigh for ‘Singing to Seals’.

The six longlisted pieces are: Topher Campbell for ‘BATTYMAN: Growing Up Black and Gay in the UK’, Sara Jafari for ‘The Knob Head Question’, Kashmir Tutt for ‘Thin Lizzy’, Lizanne Davis for ‘Attack of the White Van Woman’, Deirdre Shanahan for ‘9 Days – Modes of Distraction’ and Kaveri Woodward for ‘Nomad’.

For more on the prize, visit the Spread the Word website here.