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  • Writer's pictureMatthew M C Smith

Shortlisted Manuscripts!

Another hugely rewarding challenge undertaken with the contest for pamphlets, chapbooks and collections in Autumn 2023. Manuscripts flew in during October and November and it was an eight week task to read them all, respond to submitters with personalised feedback and come up with the almost impossible task of shortlisting. Pretty speedy perhaps? A lot of work.


It was envisaged that 6 - 8 manuscripts would make the shortlist. In the end, this became 25, a testament to the inventiveness and power of the writing, how the quality seemed to be neck and neck. Whilst we make no pretensions to be the arbiters of good taste, these submissions seemed to have that extra zip. We now have a large group submissions to look over again and we look at the final manuscripts with the potential (all being well) to be published with Black Bough, sadly only a fraction of the 25.

All shortlisted writers have been offered the opportunity to have their work published by Black Bough online in features or individual editions so the opportunities to be published/ showcased are much broader than those few that get finally published with their own print. Indeed, there are writers not shortlisted who have also been offered this. This means that a wider group of writers benefit from this contest over many other contests you see.


We have at least two years worth of work resulting from this submission call, possibly three years.





Thanks for sending your work and supporting the contest. The winners will be announced next week! Great job Philip, Julian, Vikki, Briony, Lesley, Kate, Jane, Regine, Mike, Kip, Stephen, Laurie, Helen, Iris, Louise, James, Anna, Saraswati, Vanessa, Sarah, Charlotte, Polly, Anne, Lee and Patrick.


If you were shortlisted and don't see your name on this list, be rightly horrified and contact us privately! Thank you!


Matthew M. C. Smith, February 2024.








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tricia.m.osborne
Feb 01

Congratulations to all those shortlisted. Well done, Matt. However, I don't envy you choosing winners from this lovely talented group. I can see it's not going to be easy!

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