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Blog: Bath Time At Last

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On Friday I was hunched over the REFRESH button eagerly awaiting the announcement of the shortlist for the Bath Children's Novel Prize. I'd entered Storm House but just after noon the announcement came, and ... Storm House wasn't on it.

I didn't not feel TOO disappointed though, because this meant I could FINALLY show off about the fact that Storm House HAD made the LONGLIST back in December! The competition is judged blindly and the names of the AUTHORS are meant to be kept secret, so when the longlist came out I realised that I'd have to keep SCHTUM - it would be pretty easy to work out which book was mine as a) I have only written one book b) that was the title and c) I have been GOING ON about it for ages! The Longlist was announced at the start of December, so imagine if you can my private PAIN as I struggled NOT to SHOW OFF about something that I really really WANTED to for a WHOLE MONTH!!

The GRATE thing about this particular award is that a lot of the judging is done by ACTUAL CHILDREN. This is lovely as it means that nobody's second guessing what they want (e.g. claiming that children will ONLY read books about OTHER children of exactly their own age) and you ALSO get the BNAKids hashtag, which features excerpts from some of the reader reports, which are GRATE. It seems daft to me that MORE Literary Competitions don't do that - surely if you want to know what sort of thing The Young People want to read, then maybe asking The Young People would be a good idea?

Anyway, I'm MIGHTILY honoured to have made the Longlist, RELIEVED to be able to say so, and proffer HEARTFELT congratulation to those who have made it through to the shortlist. If the comments on the hashtag are anything to go by, there are some pretty excellent books on there!

posted 8/1/2018 by MJ Hibbett

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