2022 Short Story Prize

Brick Lane Bookshop New Short Stories 2022 is out now!

Featuring stories from: Shazia J. Altaf, Avril Caprani, Imogen Fox, Emily Gaywood-James, Giovanna Iozzi, Bonnie Lander Johnson, Miki Lentin, Max Lury, Rosaleen Lynch, Yvette Naden, Hannah Retallick, and Martha Sprackland

‘Exceptional stories, each so startlingly different, yet all stay with you. A true celebration of the short-story form.’ Huma Qureshi

Congratulations to the winners of the 2022 Brick Lane Bookshop Short Story Prize!

The prizes were announced by competition judge Chris Wellbelove at an event in the shop on November 14th.

The Competition judges on the winning story:
‘Misery through the perils of social media and an obsession with a pop star. It’s genuinely tense and the narrator has a strong, memorable voice. It’s a little sickening; no one comes out clean.’ – Anne Meadows

‘I fell in love with Missy Starling from the very first line. Such a clever, slick, witty, engrossing story. I loved its energy, its slightly sinister edge, the fact that it made me laugh. The pacing and structure were spot on and I loved every part. Outrageous in a good way, this was hands down my favourite story and
a truly deserved winner.’ – Huma Qureshi

‘Refreshingly original. This story has an energy and a sense of humour that grabs you from the first line.’ – Chris Wellbelove

Congratulations to the 2022 Brick Lane Bookshop Short Story Prize Shortlistees!

Here’s what the judges said about the entire longlist:

‘The BLB SSP longlist is testament to the breadth and imagination of a new generation of writers, and the

elasticity of the short-story form. We read stories that were funny, sexy, deeply sad, and very strange. We read them

not knowing a thing about their authors, finding ourselves amazed again and again by the talent on display. It’s a

wonderful list.’ Anne Meadows

‘Exceptional stories, each so startlingly different, yet all stay with you. A true celebration of the short-story form.’

Huma Qureshi

‘The stories on this longlist showcase the range and excitement of the form – read them for their invention and

imagination, and for their abilities to move, surprise and amuse.’ Chris Wellbelove

Congratulations to the 2022 Longlistees!

2022 Short Story Prize Longlist
2022 Short Story Prize Longlist: Author pics
Thank you to every writer who submitted a story to the competition. We had 775 entries and the quality of writing was superb.

The 2022 Short Story Prize Long-Longlist.

Story TitleWriter
After the Good Shepherd’s Laundry, BuffaloGilli Fryzer
AmbergrisMartha Sprackland
Before, behind, between, above, belowMary Franklin
Best of ThreeEdward Fry
BolanoJohn Bittles
CaravanThomas O’Malley
Clara By Every NameHannah Retallick
CommunionAvril Caprani
Crimson For CrimsonAdam Shakinovsky
Digging for TreasureHenry Tydeman
ElizaGabrielle Johnson
Everything and NothingAdyeri Mugarra
forever unfolding but never completeJames Treadell
Generation LossGopikrishna Selvaseelan
IdolatryBonnie Lander Johnson
In the Shadow of the Banana TreeSara Lyon
In TranslationEmily Gaywood-James
In UteroAisha Phoenix
IntimacyLia Martin
Mayfly GirlYvette Naden
Missy StarlingImogen Fox
NICE_VIEW.JPGVictoria Manifold
Nobody on the RoadJon Stapley
On Fire For JesusHarry Carr
Point and shootGuy Ware
Push PresentHarriet Armstrong
Riding LessonsMax Lury
Selling OilShazia Altaf
Shalom’s RageCarla Jenkins
SoilJames Roberts
Sopranos (spoilers)Augustin Macellari
SuccessionPnina Shinebourne
The Burial Of A YrsköldeDaphne Lecoeur
The DumpPhoebe Hurst
The Last FareJem Dixon
The ReadingMiriam Pethania
The RockMiki Lentin
The StingDaniela Esposito
The StormLouis Parker
The Technique of SnowJess Moody
The Truth About The Lies People Told About CattleJohnny Eugster
Things I Wouldn’t ReadJoseph Regan
TippingGiovanna Iozzi
Turf SmokeRosaleen Lynch
Two-Headed BoySamantha O’Brien
Uncle MickEilish Mulholland
VioletNicole Davis
Void ChartersEllen Wiese
WheelsMorwenna Lawson
WhitebaitMartha Sprackland
The 2022 shortlist will be announced in September, and the new anthology will be released towards the end of the year.

£1000 First Prize

£250 Second Prize

£100 Third Prize

The longlisted stories will be published in the Brick Lane Bookshop Short Story Prize anthology in Autumn 2022.

Longlisted stories will be read and judged by our panel: Anne Meadows, Huma Qureshi and Chris Wellbelove.

Anne Meadows is an Editorial Director at Granta Books. It’s her job to help find, acquire, edit and shepherd eight or so of the books Granta publish each year. She loves the intensity of the acquisitions process, the rigour of an edit and the buzz of watching a book she’s laboured over find critics, readers, prizes and (hopefully) posterity. Anne has worked with Gwendoline Riley, Margo Jefferson, Hiromi Kawakami, Sayaka Murata, Mariana Enriquez and Sandra Newman.
Huma Qureshi is an award-winning writer. Her memoir How We Met: A Memoir of Love and Other Misadventures was published in January 2021, chosen as one of Stylist’s best non-fiction picks for 2021, while her debut short story collection, Things We Do Not Tell The People We Love was published in November 2021, chosen as the Guardian’s Book Of The Day. She was shortlisted for the Brick Lane Bookshop short story prize 2020, for her story Small Differences, and won the Harper’s Bazaar short story prize in the same year. She is now writing a novel, which will be published by Sceptre in 2023.
Chris Wellbelove joined Aitken Alexander as an agent in 2017 and was made a Director of the agency in 2018. He was shortlisted for Literary Agent of the Year at the 2019 British Book Awards. He represents Daisy Johnson, Vanessa Onwuemezi, Kayo Chingonyi, The Secret Barrister and many others.
In fiction his tastes tend towards the literary. He is always interested to see fiction that is experimenting with form or language, but he is currently especially keen to see ambitious stories about people and the human condition – think A Little Life or The Art of Fielding. Other favourite recent fiction includes Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill, The Idiot by Elif Batuman, The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner and Friday Black by Nana Kwame Asjei-Brenyah.

2022 Timeline

Submissions open: 19th January 2022

Deadline for entries: 5PM, 19th April 2022

Long-longlist announced: late June 2022

Longlist (stories to be published in the anthology) announced: Early August

Shortlist announced: September

Book Launch and Prize announcements: Autumn 2022

How to Enter

Fill out the entry form on this page.

Deadline for receiving entries is 5PM, 19th April, 2022

Entry costs £10 per story. The proceeds of the competition cover prize administration, the anthology production costs and paying readers and judges. Everyone involved with the running of the prize is paid.

UPDATE: all free low-income entries have now been allocated (11/03/22). We have 45 free entries for low-income writers on a first come, first served basis. If you consider yourself to be on a low-income, please email Kate at [email protected]  to check availability. Use ‘Low-income entry’ as your subject header. We do not require any evidence of your financial situation, but please include your full name and do bear in mind these places are limited.

File Specifications

Save your entry as a PDF.

Use the title of your story, followed by your word count as the file name, eg: Bookshops are Great 1978

Entries are judged anonymously so your name must not be anywhere on the document. If it is, (including in a footer, header, or file name), your entry will be disqualified.

Please use the following:

Font – Arial

Size – 12pt

Colour – black

Line spacing – double

Number your pages.

Terms and Conditions

Stories must be between 1000 and 5000 words (not including the title).

Stories must be for adults.

Stories must be written in English.

Entries must be an original work of fiction by the entrant. Non-fiction, essays, memoir or poetry will not be accepted. 

All submissions are blinded to judges and readers. Your name must not be anywhere on your submission, if it is, your entry will be automatically disqualified.

Entrants must be over eighteen by the submissions deadline 5PM, 19th April 2022.

Multiple entries from the same author are accepted, but each entry is £10. Each entry must be submitted using a separate entry form.

No edits or changes can be made to entries after submission, so please double check your work before submitting.

Entrants must be residents of the UK. This is to keep numbers manageable in the first few years of the prize. Proof of address will be required at the longlist stage.

Entries not paid for (unless the entrant has been allocated a free low-income entry from [email protected] in advance) will be deleted.

Entries received after the deadline of 5PM, 19th April 2022 will not be accepted.

Submission of an entry is taken as acceptance of our terms and conditions.

Your story must be unpublished and not scheduled for publication in print or online (with the exception of personal blogs). Please let us know if this changes.

The story must be the entrant’s own original work.

Translations into English are accepted. Any prize money would be shared between writer and translator and both would be credited in the anthology. Please use the writer’s name on the submissions form. If the submission is long-longlisted, please inform us of the translator’s name at that stage and we will use both names on any listings and in the anthology should the story be longlisted.

Entries will not be accepted from members of the Brick Lane Bookshop team, nor their families. 

The entrant may have had other work published, for instance individual stories in anthologies or online, but not an entire book of their own fiction as of the submissions deadline of 5PM, 19th April 2022.

Entrants may have had a book published that is not fiction.

Longlisted and shortlisted writers will be notified by email.

No editorial feedback can be provided.

The judges’ decision is final.

The copyright remains the author’s but Brick Lane Bookshop and BLB Press Ltd have the right to publish longlisted stories online and in print.

Longlisted stories will be copy-edited before publication.

The story can not have won another prize but may have been short or longlisted.

We are sorry that unsuccessful entrants cannot be individually contacted. Please sign up to our newsletter when submitting your entry to receive news about the prize.

Reasons for disqualification:

Entrant’s name on submission

Entry fee not paid (and writer has not been allocated a low-income entry)

The submission is outside the word limit.

The entrant is not a UK resident

Please email any queries to: [email protected]

The BLB Podcast is a new project from Brick Lane Bookshop where we interrogate the short story form. We talk about why we love short stories, the writing process and how to get published.

Listen here, or on your preferred podcast app: Apple, Spotify, Anchor, Pocketcasts

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