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International shortlisting double for Creative Writing

1 December 2020

Talents of the distinguished Creative Writing team feature in 2020 Society of Authors’ Translations Prizes shortlist

Richard Gwyn and Abigail Parry have made the international shortlist in the Premio Valle Inclán for translations into English of full-length Spanish language works of literary merit and general interest.

The annual Valle Inclán prize of £2,000 for translations of Spanish language works showcases the latest work of two of the  Creative Writing team, based in the School of English, Communication and Philosophy.

This year’s international prizes feature six shortlists, with a total of 35 ‘mind expanding and enriching’ translations from six languages into English.

Multi-award-winning poet, novelist, essayist and translator, Richard Gwyn is shortlisted for his translation of Impossible Loves by Darío Jaramillo (Carcanet Poetry). Professor of Critical and Creative Writing his books include Wales Book of the Year The Vagabond’s Breakfast, The Colour of a Dog Running Away and Deep Hanging Out, alongside his poetry collections Walking on Bones, Being in Water, Sad Giraffe Café and Stowaway: A Levantine Adventure. He is also the translator of the widely-acclaimed anthology, The Other Tiger: Recent Poetry from Latin America and two other collections by Argentine poets Joaquín O. Giannuzzi and Jorge Fondebrider.

Abigail Parry is shortlisted – together with her co-translator, Serafina Vick – for A Little Body are Many Parts (Bloodaxe Books), a selection of work by Cuban poet Legna Rodríguez Iglesias. The collection was also the winner of an English PEN Award, and was shortlisted for the inaugural Derek Walcott Prize.

The other four books on the shortlist are translations of Javier Cercas’ Lord of All the Dead, Enrique Vila-Matas’ Mac and His Problem, Samanta Schweblin’s Mouthful of Birds and Julio Ramón Ribeyro’s The Word of the Speechless.

Judges Imogen Choi and James Womack said of this year’s shortlist:

“The judging process was hard at every level. The shortlist ended up covering a range of styles and types of writing: short stories and poetry as well as novels. A certain melancholy air of reminiscence hangs over many of the works chosen, though whether this is a result of the judges' own prejudices or the times we are living in, or something particular to Spanish-language literature, is uncertain.”

The winners of the 2020 Society of Authors’ Translations Prizes will be announced in an online celebration on 11 February 2021. The Premio Valle Inclán is sponsored by ALCS and the Society of Authors.

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