Comedy Women in Print (CWIP) have just announced their shortlisted candidates for their Published Novel category for 2022/23.
Launched by comedian, actress and author Helen Lederer, the awards are now in their fourth year, and will be held at the Groucho Club on April 17. The award ceremony at the Groucho Club will include a very famous, enduring winner, as well as a famous break-through witty woman.
Eight authors have been shortlisted by a celebrated panel of judges that include Arabella Weir, Susie Blake, Anita Dobson, and Angie Greaves. The requirements for the winner of this category set out that they must have written a comedy novel published between 29th May 2021 and 14th October 2022. The winning writer receives a cash prize of £3000 from the ALCS and the runner up receives £1000.
Absurd, modern and eminently relatable, the humour in these titles were on another level for this year’s judges… The multitude of ways women express humour about the darkest, most urgent topics is impressive, taking you through grief, sex, guilt, class, race, workplace and sexism.
The shortlisted titles are:
Love Marriage by Monica Ali
The Startup Wife by Tahmima Anam
Factory Girls by Michelle Gallen
Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
Impossible by Sarah Lotz
The Lock In by Phoebe Luckhurst
Wahala by Nikki May
The Exhibitionist by Charlotte Mendelson
“The panel had the most difficult task of creating a shortlist. After much debate, I feel that we’ve created a list that reflects creative writing at its best as well as representing comedy at its best. Books that make you laugh whilst you’re reading and enables you to paint pictures in your mind are priceless.”Head Judge Angie Greaves
CWIP Founder Helen Lederer added: “Selecting eight was very painful as all entrants provided wit and joy in so many different ways. We have a crop of debut novels, including one that has already gone to TV, as well as new pleasures from established witty authors. CWIP is a platform for witty literature as much as a competition. Until a few years ago we were mostly laughing at men’s funny books as they were championed more. CWIP has changed that.
“By providing a shop window of witty women’s titles – the laughter AND the parity has increased! The prize has changed the landscape of winners: 50% of published book awards are now won by women compared to less than 5% previously.”
The awards have also announced the shortlist for the Unpublished Novel of over 80,000 words. This year’s list includes those of high originality, alongside relatable characters and bold humour.
The winner will receive a book deal with Harper Fiction and a £5000 advance, and the unpublished runner-up receives a place on the University of Hertfordshire MA course in Creative Writing or Writing Mentorship. A second runner-up will receive a place on the online MA in Comedy Writing from Falmouth University. The CWIP ‘Book to Screen’ mentorship award in partnership with Schoobert Productions is given to the third runner up.
The Comedy Women in Print Prize 2023 shortlist for Unpublished Novel is:
While He Looked at the Moon by Christina Carty
Death and Her Life by Veronika Dapunt
Miss Merriman Regrets by Louise Jensen
Swiping at 60 by Niloufar Lamakan
Happy Above Us by Silvia Saunders
Second Chance by Joanna Waldron
Godfellas by Nicola Whyte
The CWIP Honorary Awards, including famous and acclaimed ‘Best Writer’ and ‘Game Changer’ are to be announced at the awards event, in addition to a special CWIP Legacy Achievement Award paying homage to the late great Sue Townsend.