Pictured: Judges, Declan Hughes, Lisa McInerney and Lucy Caldwell.
After receiving close to 2,700 entries, judging is underway in the RTÉ Short Story Competition 2021 in honour of Francis MacManus. Successful shortlisted writers will be announced in September.
Writers had until Friday 7th May to submit their short story to the competition, which is currently being shortlisted by this year’s judges, writers Lisa McInerney, Declan Hughes and Lucy Caldwell.
A shortlist of ten stories will be announced in September, and the top prize-winners will be announced on an Arena special programme on RTÉ Radio 1 some weeks later. All 10 stories will be produced for radio, voiced by some of Ireland’s most talented actors, including Ingrid Craigie, Ali White, Kathy Rose O’Brien, Ronan Leahy and Aaron Monaghan.
Series producer Sarah Binchy says: “Once again, we’ve had a very positive response to the competition. It aims to discover some of the best new Irish fiction writing for radio each year and we have received some wonderful stories from talented writers across the country, and beyond. Thanks to all of you who took time to send us your stories. It’s now over to our esteemed judges who have the difficult task of selecting their shortlist of 10, which we’ll announce in September.”
The overall winner will receive €3,000, while €2,000 and €1,000 will be awarded to the second and third place prize winners respectively. A further seven runners-up will receive €250 each, and all 10 shortlisted stories will be published on rte.ie/culture and broadcast in a season of new writing on RTÉ Radio 1 in the autumn.
Set up in 1986 to honour writer and broadcaster Francis MacManus, the RTÉ Short Story Competition has been a critically important launch pad for new and emerging writers in Ireland. Past winners and shortlisted writers include Claire Keegan, Danielle McLaughlin, Anthony Glavin, Chris Binchy, Nuala O’Connor, Liz Nugent, Colin Walsh, Stephen Walsh and Sarah Gilmartin.
To find out more about the competition, to read and listen to past winning stories, and to look out for news of the shortlist, see www.rte.ie/writing.
About the RTÉ Short Story Competition
A competition for original short stories for radio was first established in 1986 in memory of Francis MacManus (1909-1965), the Kilkenny-born novelist, biographer and former Head of Talks and Features at Radio Éireann. Every year, the shortlisted stories are broadcast in a series of new writing on RTÉ Radio1.
The RTÉ Short Story Competition in honour of Francis MacManus is produced by Sarah Binchy.
For competition rules, information on how to enter, and to read and listen to past winning stories, see www.rte.ie/writing.
Lisa McInerney’s work has featured in Winter Papers, The Stinging Fly, Granta, The Guardian, Le Monde, The Irish Times, BBC Radio 4 and various anthologies. Her debut novel The Glorious Heresies won the 2016 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction and the 2016 Desmond Elliott Prize. Her second novel, The Blood Miracles, won the 2018 RSL Encore Award. Her third, The Rules of Revelation, has just been published.
Declan Hughes is a novelist and playwright. His first novel in the acclaimed Ed Loy series, The Wrong Kind of Blood, won the Shamus Award for Best First PI Novel and the Le Point magazine prize for best European crime novel; his most recent novel is All The Things You Are. Co-founder and former artistic director of Rough Magic theatre company, his plays include I Can’t Get Started, Digging For Fire and Shiver. He teaches creative writing at UCD and is Literature Adviser to the Arts Council.
Lucy Caldwell is the author of two collections of short stories, three novels, several stage plays and radio dramas, and is the editor of Being Various: New Irish Short Stories (Faber, 2019). Her short stories have been widely broadcast and anthologised and her work has won many awards, including the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, the Dylan Thomas Prize and a Major Individual Artist Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Her latest collection, Intimacies, has just been published by Faber.