Longlist for new Write Now prize

Macmillan Children’s Books announces today eight debut novels longlisted for the inaugural Write Now award. The prize aims to find a new debut novel, written for readers between the ages of nine and sixteen, which will be published exclusively for the independent bookshop trade. The competition received a wonderful range of entries, and this diversity is reflected in the longlist. The eight manuscripts cover comedy, tragedy and chilling horror and feature some quirky and unusual protagonists, including a delinquent genie, a Moon Dragon and the leader of a cat rebellion.

Independent booksellers have been enthusiastically signing up to judge via the Write Now website at www.writenowcompetition.com and can continue to do so until 10th May 2013. Among the bookshops already on board are Rhyme and Reason in Sheffield, Mostly Books in Abingdon and Under the Greenwood Tree in London. Macmillan is calling for other independent booksellers to join the search to find their new children’s author. Each bookseller is asked select their top two out of the longlisted books. Selections need to be made by 30th June 2012. Four titles will go forward to the next round.

The Longlist

  • The Box of Demons by Daniel Whelan

A teen boy is cursed to carry around a box containing three obnoxious demons who are intent on ruining his social life.

  • The Marionette by Martin Stewart

A chilling tale about a boy who suspects his grandfather’s collection of puppets might not be as harmless as they seem.

  • Hinterland by Lorna Fergusson

Kick’s sister hasn’t spoken since her accident, but Kick knows that there’s something going on behind her eyes – she’s terrified of something that no one else can see, and it’s his job to find out what.

  • Kedric by Kirsty Applebaum

Gripping YA, about a girl living within a secretive community. When she is imprisoned for a misdemeanour she soon finds out who she can trust and who she should fear.

  • Led Astray by Lindsey Mountford

A tale of feral cats rebelling against their domesticated counterparts, with echoes of Watership Down

  • The Game, by Clare Sandling

A group of school kids are sent into a virtual computer game in which they must play to survive . . .

  • Dylan and the Deadly Dimension by Mark Cockshutt

When Dylan Thompson discovers a snake under the plughole in his bathroom, life takes a peculiar turn in this gripping fantasy adventure.

  • The Treasure Hunters by Jodie Parachini

Two kids go on the treasure hunt of a lifetime around New York City, solving clues and riddles as they go.