Longlisted for the SI Leeds Literary Prize

Sad to see summer winding down, but I had a good one – hope you did too!  Among other exciting news, I’m currently longlisted for the SI Leeds Literary Prize, which is awarded every two years to an outstanding unpublished fiction manuscript by a BAME woman writer.  (BAME is the somewhat odd acronym used in the UK for a person of color, i.e. Black or Asian)  The shortlist will be announced in late September.  Of course, my entry is the as-yet-unpublished manuscript of my debut novel Dark Chapter, which will be published next June in the UK and Ireland, and September 2017 in the US and Canada, and elsewhere! I’m currently in the midst of the final edit, and have been going through draft cover designs for the UK hardcover.  My agent will be selling rights to the finished manuscript at the Frankfurt Book Fair next month, to add to the four territories already sold.  Big thanks to all the editors who have signed on already to bring Dark Chapter to readers around the world.  This includes Lisanne Mathijssen at Harper Collins Holland, who will be publishing my book in Dutch!   

One such editor, Gunilla Sondell, is a fiction editor at Norstedts, Sweden’s oldest publishing house.  I had the pleasure of meeting Gunilla this summer when I spent a couple weeks wandering around Sweden.  I got to stay at her rustic summer cottage, went for hikes in the forest, and picked a few mushrooms. A few days later, I got on a 21-hour train ride to Swedish Lapland, where I did some more hiking north of the Arctic Circle.  Overall, it was a fantastic trip for me, and I kind of fell in love with the long days, fresh lakes, tall pine forests, and impressive mushrooms of Sweden in the summer. I’ll definitely be heading back.

A selfie with Gunilla, my Swedish editor, and my haul of freshly -picked chanterelles

A selfie with Gunilla, my Swedish editor, and my haul of freshly -picked chanterelles

Other trips include a few days visiting friends in Madrid, enjoying both cityscapes and countryside, and an upcoming trip to Germany.  In the meantime, must get back to the grindstone and finish my work on Dark Chapter.  Here’s the exciting post from my agent’s September newsletter!

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