Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Undiscovered Voices 2012

Just over two years ago, I learned an extract of my ghost story, Adèle, had won a place in SCBWI British Isles' Undiscovered Voices 2010 anthology. I joined an illustrious company of previous Undiscovered Voices winners (Candy Gourlay, Sarwat Chadda, Steve Hartley, Harriet Goodwin). Since then many of my fellow 2010 winners have gone on to secure agents and publishing deals of their own (Paula Rawsthorne, Dave Cousins, Jane McLoughlin, Claire O'Brien).

Seriously, check out these covers:


My time hasn't come yet. I tell myself I'm still searching for my story. But nevertheless, winning a place in Undiscovered Voices was life changing for me. It was an affirmation, an accolade, an instant support group, and a networking boon all rolled into one.

But enough about me! The real point of this post is to extend a huge congratulations to 2012's Undiscovered Voices winners.

I've been avidly reading this year's anthology over the past week, and absolutely engrossed with the incredible storytelling included. Plus, for the first time ever, UV included illustrations. This might be my favorite part, as the illustrations are whimsical, beautiful, and hopeful. I keep coming back to each picture, losing myself in them again and again.

I also love the anthology's variety. Everything from straight up fantasy, to contemporary realism, to dystopian, urban fantasy, and an African adventure, an upside-down fairy tale to a story about a boy stealing the antichrist (aka Lucy). And such incredibly unique ideas! I was especially riveted by Sharon Jones' Dead Jealous (a murder mystery / thriller set in a teenager's worst nightmare: a New Age Festival), Jane Hardstaff's The Executioner's Child (historical fiction at the Tower of London with an ancient curse and river creatures--I couldn't stop turning pages!), Rosie Best's Skulk (a bad-ass female graffiti artist who discovers a shapeshifting fox--can't wait to see where this is going!), and Rachel J. Latham's To Dance with the Wind (totally unique, other-worldly fantasy with slaves and evil bird creatures. Wow!).

This week the blog Tall Tales & Short Stories is running interviews with all of this year's winning authors and illustrators, PLUS a competition to win a copy of UV 2012. Otherwise the anthology is not yet available publicly, but if you would like a copy (and aren't lucky enough to win one!), they should be on sale via the website by next week.

As this Thursday is the anthology's official launch party, I probably won't be posting again this week. Instead I'll be going to London that evening, hoping to get my copy filled with signatures from many of these soon to be famous authors, plus hobnobbing with some of my old friends from the 2008 and 2010 anthologies, the judges, and several dozen agents and editors (and yes, if I'm feeling brave, I may mention Project Demo to a few of them).

Again, congratulations to the UV 2012ers! I guarantee you won't be undiscovered for long.

12 comments:

  1. I love anthologies, and LOVE the idea of finding undiscovered voices. Glad I saw this post.

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    1. It's a really great project SCBWI British Isles has taken on! Not sure it would work in the US, as the market is so much bigger, but it's a shame.

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  2. Congrats to the winners. I love that book montage. I added one of the books to my wish list and will look into the others.

    I'm hoping your day will come, too. :)

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    1. Aw, thanks, Medeia. Me, too. ;) And I hope you enjoy reading a few of those UV books!

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  3. Your day WILL come. :-) But for now, you can enjoy the excitement of being part of a such a talented crowd.

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    1. Thanks, Anna. Goodness, so lovely to have such supportive blog friends! And yes, definitely looking forward to all the positive energy and talent emanating from London tonight!

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  4. Ditto to what Medeia and Anna have said. My day hasn't come yet either, but I'm still full of hope. We'll be hanging in there together, fighting the good fight (and reading all of these great books).

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    1. Nice to have friends on this team, Mary! Thanks for the reminder about hope, hanging in there, and fighting the good fight!

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  5. Thanks for letting me learn about this anthology. I love fantasy and many of the stories sound intriguing. Off to check the site and see if they are on sale yet. Sometimes I wish I could move to England. The U.S. does seem less supportive of its 'undiscovered' ones.

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    1. Oh, you're welcome. Thanks for stopping by! A lot of the stories are intriguing. I don't think they're selling yet (just checked), but I'll post here as soon as they are. Last time they only charged £5, which includes shipping to the US.

      I think the thing about the UK is that it's a much smaller market. Very prestigious, but a much smaller pool, and there are a few more contests like UV. But I HAVE heard a rumor that SCBWI is looking at exporting UV to a few other locations, including the US. So maybe you don't have to move at all!

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  6. Let me join the others and say that it is really only a matter of time before your talent is known to a bigger audience.

    I hope Project Demo finds a champion! :)

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    1. Aw, you're a sweetheart, thanks, Bridgette. Best wishes with your new project, too!

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