Lucy’s story “Escape Routes” was shortlisted for the BBC International Short Story Award 2012 which celebrates the best of contemporary British short fiction and is one of the most prestigious for a single short story. Clive Anderson chairs the judging panel this year which consists of novelists Anjali Joseph and Ross Raisin, novelist and Emeritus Professor of Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, Michèle Roberts, and Editor of Readings, BBC Radio, Di Speirs. Each of the ten shortlisted stories was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 .
“Escape Routes”, set in Belfast in the 1990s, is told from the point of view of a child, whose friend and baby sitter mysteriously goes missing. Delivered with the touching innocence of a child oblivious but not unaffected by the ideological and political strife plaguing Northern Ireland in the 1990s, the story is an oblique examination of a besieged Belfast. On writing the story, Lucy said: ‘The catalyst was a heartfelt, luminous piece in the Observer by the playwright Lucy Prebble about her childhood love of computer games.’
“Escape Routes” was broadcast on September 17 at 3.30pm read by Laura Pyper, and is available as a podcast from the BBC site.
The BBC International Short Story Award 2012 Anthology, published by Comma Press, is available at all good bookshops and the Comma Press store , as well as in Kindle format. The winning author, to be announced on October 2 live on Front Row.
Lucy Caldwell was the 2012 recipient of a Major Individual Artist Award granted by the Arts Council Northern Ireland.
As part of The Brussels Platform Lucy and author David Park took centre stage at the Office of the Northern Ireland Executive in Brussels to read extracts from their most recent novels The Light of Amsterdam (David Park) and The Meeting Point (Lucy Caldwell). The authors read their work in front of an international audience, including MEPs and the opinion-formers amongst EU representatives in Brussels.
The Brussels Platform is the result of collaboration between the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the Northern Ireland Executive Office in Brussels. Launched in September 2011 the programme runs until June 2012 and will represent musicians, writers, dancers, theatre practitioners and visual artists giving them the opportunity to showcase their talents at a series of ten monthly events at the prestigious headquarters of the NI Executive. Encouraged by the welcome they received at the Northern Ireland Executive Office, Lucy Caldwell said ‘It was a real privilege to be invited to Brussels and to read alongside David Park. The audience was very engaged and the conversations continued even after the event had ended. Culturally, Northern Ireland feels like a very exciting place at the moment, and I felt proud to be a representative of that.’
Lucy Caldwell, winner of the Dylan Thomas Prize 2011
Pic: James Davies/©James Davies Photography.
Lucy Caldwell has won the 2011 Dylan Thomas Prize for her novel “The Meeting Point”. Judges described the novel as “a beautifully written and mature reflection on identity, loyalty and belief in a complex world”,
Speaking at the presentation ceremony in the late Welsh poet’s home city of Swansea, Lucy said Wales had played a major role in getting her career up and running. “In many ways my career started here. My very first play was premiered in Chapter arts centre in Cardiff.”
The founder of the University of Wales Dylan Thomas Prize, Prof Peter Stead, said: “The Meeting Point is a lyrical modern day parable set in Bahrain depicting the crises in the faith and marriage of an Irish woman and her relationship with a troubled Muslim teenager. It is a beautifully written and mature reflection on identity, loyalty and belief in a complex world. We have no doubt that this is yet another significant step in what will undoubtedly be a striking career.”
Lucy Caldwell with Provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, US Ambassador to Ireland, Dr Daniel M.Rooney, and his wife, Patricia Rooney. Pic PAUL SHARP/SHARPPIX
Lucy Caldwell had been awarded The Rooney Prize for Irish Literature for 2011, in recognition of her achievement and outstanding promise as a novelist and dramatist. The announcement was made by the Provost of Trinity College Dublin, Dr Patrick Prendergast at a reception in the Residence of the Ambassador of the United States of America to Ireland on October 25th 2011 Previous winners of the Rooney Prize include Bernard Farrell, Neil Jordan, Frank McGuinness, Deirdre Madden and Anne Enright.
Commenting on the significance of Lucy’s work Dr Brown said she addresses difficult personal issues in complex cultural settings with a rare combination of sensitivity and acute intelligence. (more information)