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Short Story Prize 2020/21: Results, Short & Long-lists

Winners

Short-list

Long-list

On behalf of all of us at Fish, we would like to congratulate the 10 winners and also those who made the short and long lists.


Emily Ruskovich, judge of the 2020 Fish Short Story Prize

Judge, Emily Ruskovich

 

The Ten Winners:

Selected by Emily Ruskovich

The 10 winners will be published in the Fish Anthology 2021.

(There were 1,631 entries to the competition.)

     
 

FIRST:
A Correspondence


by Mark Martin  (New York)

 

SECOND:
Methane


by Pavle Miha  (Portugal)

 

THIRD:
The Fisherman


by Chris Weldon  (Hampshire)

 

Aleksandr

by Amanda Huggins  (Yorkshire)

 

The Etymology of a Sword Swallower

by K Lockwood Jefford  (Wales)

 

How to Accept the Lunar Landing

by Nicole Olweean  (USA)

 

Duck Egg Blue

by Fiona Ennis  (Waterford, Ireland)

 

OMG Winn Handler Moved Next Door!

by Lesley Bannatyne   (Boston, USA)

  Connemara  Salmon by Kathy MacGloin   (Scotland)
  Rick and Molly Drink Giles Newington  (Dublin)
     

A little about the winners:

Mark Martin was born in England and did his best to grow up there. Late in his teens, novels and poetry prompted Mark to rescue his education in the nick of time, a debt to literature that will happily never be paid off. Recently, his short stories have been accepted by the Manchester Review, Dark Mountain, Storgy, the Missouri Review, and Stand. The copy chief at Verso Books, he lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son, a state of contentment he has done little to deserve.

Pavle Miha is a new writer and Methane is his first published story. He was born in Portugal to Serbian parents and moved to London when he was 18 to work as a game developer. He co-founded Flavourworks where they created Erica, an innovative marriage of games and film for iOS and PlayStation 4. Methane was inspired by a summer spent staring out of the window, and too many failed attempts at making sourdough bread. 

Chris Weldon was born in 1948 in Worcestershire to Irish parents. He was largely raised in England but spent a fair amount of his childhood in rural Ireland. Having screwed up a degree in Classics he travelled abroad extensively in a long career in the aerospace industry. Now retired in Hampshire, England he is married with two grown children and four grandchildren. He was fortunate enough to win the Fish publishing Short Story Prize in 2015.

Amanda Huggins is a creative writing tutor and copy editor who writes (very slowly) about love, loss and the sea. She is the author of the novella, All Our Squandered Beauty, and four collections of short stories and poetry. Amanda won her first writing prize for a love poem to George Best when she was eleven. She grew up on the North Yorkshire coast and now lives near landlocked Leeds.

K. Lockwood Jefford grew up in Cardiff with an obsession for books and cartwheels. She worked as an NHS psychiatrist and psychotherapist alongside a stint in stand-up comedy before completing an MA in creative writing at Birkbeck. Her work appears in many publications including Brick Lane Bookshop’s 2020 Prize Anthology and Prospect Magazine online. Her short story, Picasso’s Face, won the 2020 VS Pritchett Prize. She is over the moon to be selected for Fish 2021.

Nicole Olweean holds an MFA in Creative Writing from University of California, Riverside. She is a poet first, and this is her first story publication. She is obsessed with community climate resiliency and is now the person to whom every friend sends their climate memes. She is preparing to move to Glasgow for an MSW program so she can make her obsession a job, write a book, and get lost in the Highlands on weekends.

Dr. Fiona Ennis lectures in Literature and Philosophy in Waterford Institute of Technology. She has won the Molly Keane Creative Writing Award. Her fiction has been shortlisted for the Bristol Short Story Prize and the U.S. based Philosophy Ethics Short Story Award. Her work has also been highly commended in both the Manchester Fiction Prize and the Seán Ó Faoláin International Short Story Prize. Her work has been published in anthologies and journals.  

Lesley Bannatyne is a freelance journalist who’s covered stories ranging from druids in Somerville, Massachusetts to relief workers in Bolivia. One of the US’s  authorities on the celebration and history of Halloween in the United States, Bannatyne and several compatriots set the Guinness World Record for Largest October 31st Gathering, a title they held with gusto from 2007-2009. Her short stories, essays, and books can be found on iskullhalloween.com, and she is crazy grateful to be a part of the Fish Anthology.

Kathy MacGloin was born in Aberdeen.  Her parents, from Counties Mayo and Longford, and her two remarkable siblings, sang songs to her and told her stories, and let her be the only one with ginger hair.  She grew up in the North of England, studied in Cambridge, Sweden and London and now works as an anaesthetist in a hospital with a helicopter and button-less lifts.  She likes poetry, handkerchiefs and the song of the blackbird.   

Giles Newington moved to Dublin from London in 1996. He worked for nearly 20 years as a journalist at The Irish Times. Over the past decade, he’s been published in various magazines and the Hibernian Writers Group anthology, and shortlisted in the Fish poetry and short story competitions. He was one of the winners in this year’s Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair. He’s spent the pandemic year in Dublin watching a lot of football with his two adult sons. 

Emily Ruskovich´s thoughts on the top three stories:

A Correspondence
I loved this story for its sincerity, its whole-hearted devotion to its characters. Morgan’s heart lies in the past, in the secrets of old letters discovered in older books. The letters themselves were absolutely engrossing. I loved the voices, and the plot turns. This story achieves so much so quickly. The characterizations are few but perfect. I loved the predicament at the story’s heart. Morgan longs to reveal the secret of the deceased gentleman, but there is no one she can tell it to. What she wants most of all is for the world to acknowledge his sacrifice and his goodness. She cannot bear that Constance doesn’t know. But the end was oddly satisfying, to see her come to accept that she herself can be the world that knows. That the acknowledgment of just one person is enough. And she will be that person for this dead man. It’s deeply moving. 

Methane
I absolutely loved this story of quiet horror, taking place on our planet after humankind has abused it to the point of no return. 
But, inside of this vast and horrific premise—made more horrific by the very real possibility of this future— the story itself is very small. The story of a person trying to discover something within himself. And that was what most captivated me. Sometimes, it’s as if the people have forgotten what it used to be like to live in a world not poisoned by the selfishness of the past. That was very tragic, the way they are trying to find meaning in a world past generations have ruined for them.
Thanks so much for the pleasure of this profound story.

The Fisherman
This story moved me deeply. I loved the lyrical language, the attention to detail, the immersion in the natural world. You are an immensely talented writer, and I could feel the heartbeat of this story, that you have really touched upon the things that matter most. It’s a very simple story, but it stirred complex emotions for me. I’m thrilled that this story is now finding its way out into the world.
Thank you for the honor of reading this remarkable piece of fiction.

 

 


 

Short-list:

(alphabetical order) There are 58 stories on the short-list. (There were 1,631 entries in total.)

Burnt Eyes, Grass Blades

George

Alabaster

Xuan Loc Limbo

Ernest

Amabile

Going Back

Terri

Armstrong

OMG Winn Handler Moved Next Door!

Lesley

Bannatyne

Freeze, Peach

Edward

Barnfield

Production Values

Tim

Booth

Scallop Shell

Lorcan

Byrne

The Innocents of Eden

Curtis

Cushman

Taymour’s Apology

Michael

Donaghy

A Boy Called Luke

Patrick

Eades

Dreams of a Catfish

Patrick

Eades

She’s Dead, But She Won’t Lie Down

Judyth

Emanuel

Buckaroo

Ingrid

Evans

The Sea

Rob

Ganley

Change of Light

Pamela

Gay

The Island of Sodor

Kristina

Gorcheva-Newberry

Vasily’s Big Break

Patrick

Gray

An Ocean Apart

Steve

Hawes

In Miniature

Emily

Howes

When We Lived Opposite Portugal

Susan

Hurley

The Triple G

Gregory

Jeffers

Becoming Whale

Jupiter

Jones

A Touch of Gladness

Cilla

Kent

Elegy for a Lost Cause

Thomas

Kiernan

Lillie

Sandy

kundra verma

The Migratory Journey of the Swallow

Jane

Lavelle

Of Flesh and Bone

John

Lavelle

The Leaving

Carolyn

Lewis

Nudes

Petra

Lindnerová

Conditions for an Avalanche

K

Lockwood Jefford

Sky An Iris

Niamh

MacCabe

Algorithm Rebel

Michael

Males

The Atlantic’s Cold Edge

Kieran

Marsh

A Correspondence

Mark

Martin

Pigeon’s Blood Red

Ken

McBeath

Rest in Peace Francesco Porta

Bruce

Meyer

Crows

David

Micklem

Methane

Pavle

Miha

Dear Comrade Tito

Tatjana

Mirkov-Popovicki

A Tale from Japanese Mythology: Urashima Meets the Fish-King

Max

Mitchell

Greenstick

Emma

Neale

Rick and Molly Drink

Giles

Newington

PERU

David

O Dwyer

How to Accept the Lunar Landing

Nicole

Olweean

Carry Me

Patrick

Parks

Title (to be decided)

Hannah

Persaud

Heroes?

Misha

Rai

Knill Close

Hannah

Retallick

Inhale, Exhale and into Exile

James

Richardson

The Last of the Mohicans

John

Rutter

Tea with the Queen

Jasmine

Sawers

A Life In Useless Objects

Adrian

Scanlan

Letter to Persephone

Dorothy

Schwarz

Layers

Lindsay

Sears

Neelam’s Wedding

Janet

Swinney

Future Perfect: The Burning City

Mike

Wasson

Lump

Aisling

Watters

The Origin

Tim

Weed

Slinky

Michelle

Wright

 

 


 

Long-list:

(alphabetical order)

There are 219 stories in the long-list. (There were 1,631 entries in total.)

Burnt Eyes, Grass Blades

George

Alabaster

The Noise School

Robin

Allender

The Golden Button

Peter-Adrian

Altini

Xuan Loc Limbo

Ernest

Amabile

Dance of the Sylphs

Rita

Ariyoshi

Shame

Terri

Armstrong

Going Back

Terri

Armstrong

The Division of Names

Azure

Arther

Sweetpea

Eimear

Arthur

My Sister’s Presence

Pamela

Baker

OMG Winn Handler Moved Next Door!

Lesley

Bannatyne

Freeze, Peach

Edward

Barnfield

Nine Ways You Know You’re In Love With Her

John-Paul

Bernbach

The Golden Frog

David

Bevan

You Should Be Happy

Iva

Bezinović-Haydon

Production Values

Tim

Booth

Cry

Lindsay

Boyd

Hey, Paddy

Mary

Bradford

Horror Workshop

Philip

Brown

Pandemic Paradox

Philip

Brown

Socially Distant

Giuseppina

Bruni

The Angel of Gennevilliers

Jennifer

Bryce

Endure When You Must

Emily

Buddenberg

Her Own Personal Savior (pdf final copy miracles)

Poppy

Burton

Scallop Shell

Lorcan

Byrne

Apple Seeds

Fija

Callaghan

THE BICYCLE

Aoife

Casby

Reliable Witness

Clemintine

Cervantez

Grand, Chowringhee

Bidisha

Chakraborty

Her Fluttering Womb

Elaine

Chiew

In Time

Rebecca

Clay

Animal Rescue

D S

Cochran

The Heart of a Boy

Rhonda

Collis

Burning of the Pinetum

Rae

Cowie

Lockdown Differences

Kathryn

Crowley

Fun Facts

Douglas

Currier

The Innocents of Eden

Curtis

Cushman

The Comedian

Robert

Daseler

The Frenchman delivers

David

Day

Sick Beasts

Janice

Deal

Chasing Sadie

Odette

Des Forges

Wouldn’t read about it

Odette

Des Forges

Taymour’s Apology

Michael

Donaghy

Rockpool

Stephen

Downes

Imposing Order on a Random World

Garret

Dwyer Joyce

A Boy Called Luke

Patrick

Eades

Dreams of a Catfish

Patrick

Eades

She’s Dead, But She Won’t Lie Down

Judyth

Emanuel

Duck Egg Blue

Fiona

Ennis

Buckaroo

Ingrid

Evans

Everyone Loves a Talking Statue

Louise

Farr

The Pyramid Scheme

Tom

Farrell

Rogue Bees

Tracy

Fells

Heaven

David

Frankel

Words

Jane

Fraser

Night and Day

Helena

Frith Powell

The Orangery

Mark

Gallacher

Broken

Mark

Gallacher

The Sea

Rob

Ganley

Change of Light

Pamela

Gay

The Saved

Sharif

Gemie

WHY I DRIVE ALONE

Jill

Gientzotis

Funeral For a Bird

Hannah

Glickstein

Self-Portrait

Hannah

Glickstein

The Island of Sodor

Kristina

Gorcheva-Newberry

The Last Time I Saw Marion

Joe

Gorman

Pockmarked

Harriet

Grace

And I Hear Him Thinking

Thomas

Graham

Vasily’s Big Break

Patrick

Gray

Nojento

Stephanie

Green

Before He Became Blind to Me

Conor

Griffin

Burial

Kenneth

Gulotta

The Memory Cake

Jill

Hadfield

Hares’ Breath

Nicky

Hallett

Man Bests Fiend

Des

Halpin

Striptease

John

Hargreaves

An Ocean Apart

Steve

Hawes

Old China Hand

Mahito

Henderson

Triptych

Petra

Hilgers

Step Away from the Pizza

Richard

Holeton

The Late Gatz

PETER

HOLLYWOOD

In Miniature

Emily

Howes

In the Time It Takes to Make a Risotto

Mandy

Huggins

Aleksandr

Mandy

Huggins

The Bright Red Beret

Clare

Jacob

The Triple G

Gregory

Jeffers

Crumb trail

Filippa

Johansen

Daisy, Death and the Duckling

Alice

Jolly

Frog Warning

Alice

Jolly

Lest Sleeping Dogs Lie

Marcus

Jones

Nighthawks–Dallas, Texas 1987, 2016

Teddy

Jones

Becoming Whale

Jupiter

Jones

Field of Stars

Pat

Jourdan

Kuhn VS. Kunh

Zeeyoo

Kang

A Touch of Gladness

Cilla

Kent

Lucky

Mary

Kerrigan

Elegy for a Lost Cause

Thomas

Kiernan

The Right to be Forgotten

Anne

Kilminster

The Quilting Group

Sarah

Klenbort

The Hugging Stations

Frances

Knight

Green Room

Carsten

Kok-Hansen

Lillie

Sandy

kundra verma

Coward

Anna

Lamche

The Bavarian Prisoner

Landa wo

Landa wo

The Migratory Journey of the Swallow

Jane

Lavelle

Of Flesh and Bone

John

Lavelle

Child and Family Assessment

Daniel

Leigh

Something Pretty

Colton

Leighton

The Leaving

Carolyn

Lewis

Nudes

Petra

Lindnerová

Lunching Out

Maggie

Ling

In Bed With My Sister

K

Lockwood Jefford

The Etymology of a Sword Swallower

K

Lockwood Jefford

Conditions for an Avalanche

K

Lockwood Jefford

Sky An Iris

Niamh

MacCabe

Connemara Salmon

Kathy

MacGloin

The Goldfish in the Gin

Wah

Mak

Algorithm Rebel

Michael

Males

Mummy’s Girl

Zoe

Manlow

The Atlantic’s Cold Edge

Kieran

Marsh

A Correspondence

Mark

Martin

All the love in her curls

Ira

Mathur

Telogen Effluvium

Eamon

Mc Guinness

Pigeon’s Blood Red

Ken

McBeath

Faithfulness

Patrick

McCusker

Christmas 1960

Eamon

McDonnell

Mary and The Age of My Enlightenment

James

McKenna

The Trial of Mark Rushmore

Alexander

Mckibbin

The Sickness

Alexander

Mckibbin

Visible Radiation

Trisha

McKinney

The Dolphin

Bruce

Meyer

Rest in Peace Francesco Porta

Bruce

Meyer

Crows

David

Micklem

Methane

Pavle

Miha

Longing v. Worth

Douglas

Milliken

Dear Comrade Tito

Tatjana

Mirkov-Popovicki

A Tale from Japanese Mythology: Urashima Meets the Fish-King

Max

Mitchell

The Cloud Collector

Mauricio

Montiel Figueiras

After Ever Happy

Sonya

Moor

Nitrogen Ice Cream

Tom

Moroney

Three oh nine

Laura

Muetzelfeldt

Winter at the Oyster Grill

John

Mulligan

Good water

John

Mulligan

The Nature of the Human

Daniel

Murphy

With Dignity

Nicola

Murray

Greenstick

Emma

Neale

Rick and Molly Drink

Giles

Newington

Alors

Eamon

Nolan

Savage

RJ

Northam

Somewhere in Scoffland

P. B.

Noseby

PERU

David

O Dwyer

A DOG CALLED DOG

Breandan

O’Broin

Tea for Two

Clare

O’Reilly

How to Accept the Lunar Landing

Nicole

Olweean

Why don’t we do it?

Ofir

Oz

The Anniversary

Gordon

Parker

The Orange Story

Nii Ayikwei

Parkes

The Thing is…

Rob

Parkinson

Carry Me

Patrick

Parks

Immergere

Angelina

Parrino

The Favela Samba

Andrew

Peake

The Balance of Things

Hannah

Persaud

Title (to be decided)

Hannah

Persaud

The Coffee Pot

Karen

Peterson

Still Life

Alyson

Porter

The Getaway

Alyson

Porter

Neighbors

James

Prier

Heroes?

Misha

Rai

Roman Numeral Relationships

Rajiv

Ramkhalawan

Robert´s Girlfriend

Dorothy

Reinders

When Seagulls

Hannah

Retallick

Knill Close

Hannah

Retallick

Inhale, Exhale and into Exile

James

Richardson

The Dance

Jjean

Roarty

Almost

Jonathan

Roper

Scars

Iain

Rowan

The Last of the Mohicans

John

Rutter

Her Face in the Darkness

Ronan

Ryan

Passages

Kevin

Sandefur

Half Crocodile

Paul

Saville

Tea with the Queen

Jasmine

Sawers

A Life In Useless Objects

Adrian

Scanlan

Seesaw

Maria

Schrattenholz

Letter to Persephone

Dorothy

Schwarz

Layers

Lindsay

Sears

What Hemingway Banged Off When He Got Back From the Bar

Sheldon

Seigel

The Dance

David

Shewell

The Artist

Mary

Shovelin

Dancing through Time

Pippa

Slattery

Denier

Han

Smith

Noble Rot

Harriet

Springbett

Swimming to Santiago

Cameron

Stewart

Danny’s Birthday

Andrew

Stiggers

Undefeated this Season

Andrew

Stiggers

Afternoon Tea

Caroline

Sutherland

Neelam’s Wedding

Janet

Swinney

Leaving Sydney

Reg

Taylor

Stamp

Sharma

Taylor

Cliff’s Edge for Sale

Sharma

Taylor

Skin

Sophie

Tiefenbacher

Food Chain

Jenny

Toune

Angel – A Bedtime Story

Jenny

Toune

Cat

Jenny

Toune

Mrs Crank’s Niece

Stephen

Tuffin

The Mountains and the Sea

Oliver

Turnbull

Fit

Alice

Walsh

The Good Neighbour

Guy

Ware

Future Perfect: The Burning City

Mike

Wasson

The Pathway

Richard

Watson

Ragdoll

Aisling

Watters

Hope

Aisling

Watters

Lump

Aisling

Watters

The Origin

Tim

Weed

The Fisherman

Chris

Weldon

In the Beginning

Sam

Windrim

My Best Friend Chloe

Bethany

Wren

No Use

Michelle

Wright

Slinky

Michelle

Wright

The Seuss House

Charles

Wyatt

The Owl at the Window

Les

Zig

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Scrap Magic

The stories here possess the difference, the quirkiness and the spark. They follow their own road and their own ideas their own way. It is a valuable quality which makes this collection a varied one. Read it, I hope you say to yourself like I did on many occasions, ‘That’s deadly. How did they think of that?’ – Eamonn Sweeney


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Dog Day

Really good short stories like these, don’t read like they were written. They read like they simply grew on the page. – Joseph O’Connor


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The Stranger

The writers in this collection can write short stories . . . their quality is the only thing they have in common. – Roddy Doyle


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The Fish Garden

This is the first volume of short stories from Ireland’s newest publishing house. We are proud that fish has enabled 15 budding new writers be published in this anthology, and I look forward to seeing many of them in print again.


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12 Miles Out – a novel by Nick Wright

12 Miles Out was selected by David Mitchell as the winner of the Fish Unpublished Novel Award.
A love story, thriller and historical novel; funny and sad, uplifting and enlightening.


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Altergeist – a novel by Tim Booth

You only know who you can’t trust. You can’t trust the law, because there’s none in New Ireland. You can’t trust the Church, because they think they’re the law. And you can’t trust the State, because they think they’re the Church And most of all, you can’t trust your friends, because you can’t remember who they were anymore.


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Small City Blues numbers 1 to 51 – a novel by Martin Kelleher

A memoir of urban life, chronicled through its central character, Mackey. From momentary reflections to stories about his break with childhood and adolescence, the early introduction to the Big World, the discovery of romance and then love, the powerlessness of ordinary people, the weaknesses that end in disappointment and the strengths that help them seek redemption and belonging.


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The Woman Who Swallowed the Book of Kells – Collection of Short Stories by Ian Wild

Ian Wild’s stories mix Monty Python with Hammer Horror, and the Beatles with Shakespeare, but his anarchic style and sense of humour remain very much his own in this collection of tall tales from another planet. Where else would you find vengeful organs, the inside story of Eleanor Rigby, mobile moustaches, and Vikings looting a Cork City branch of Abracababra?


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News & Articles

Fish Anthology 2021 – Launch

4th July 2021
The launch of the Fish Anthology has been an important event at the West Cork Literary Festival since the festival’s inception. This year the festival is online, and the launch is kicking the festival off. Date: 4th July @ 5pm GMT To be part of the audience follow this LINK

Poetry Prize 2021 Results, Long and Short-lists

15th May 2021
  Winners Short-list Long-list     Winners Here are the 10 winners, as chosen by judge Billy Collins, to be published in the Fish Anthology 2021 The Fish Anthology 2021 will  be launched as part of the West Cork Literary Festival  (July 2021), as an online event. The 10 winning poems will be published in […]

Flash Fiction Prize 2021: Results, Short & Long-lists

10th April 2021
Winners Short-list Long-list   From all of us at Fish, Congratulations to the writers whose Flash Stories were short or long-listed, and to the 10 winners.   Winners Here are the 10 winning Flash Fiction Stories, as chosen by Kathy Fish, to be published in the FISH ANTHOLOGY 2021. Comments on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd […]

Short Memoir Prize 2021: Results, Short & Long-lists

1st April 2021
Winners Short-list Long-list On behalf of all of us at Fish, we congratulate the 10 winners who made it to the Anthology, and those writers who made the long and short-lists.   The 10 Winners: Selected by Blake Morrison.         These 10 winners will be published in the Fish Anthology 2021. FIRST […]

Short Story Prize 2020/21: Results, Short & Long-lists

17th March 2021
Winners Short-list Long-list On behalf of all of us at Fish, we would like to congratulate the 10 winners and also those who made the short and long lists.   The Ten Winners: Selected by Emily Ruskovich The 10 winners will be published in the Fish Anthology 2021. (There were 1,631 entries to the competition.) […]

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