Audible launches New Writing Grant: The Crime Edition

Judging Panel Includes Mark Billingham, Sharon Bolton, Clare Corbett, Jake Kerridge And Laurence Howell

Winning Author To Receive £10,000 Advance, Plus Mentoring From Some Of The UK’s Top Crime Writers


London, 7th June 2017 – Audible today announces the UK’s first audio-exclusive writing grant. The Audible New Writing Grant: The Crime Edition invites the UK’s most promising crime writers to submit an unpublished thriller of 50,000 words or more to a panel of experts. Free to enter, a shortlist of three candidates will be announced in early 2018. For a little extra inspiration, applicants will be able to download a copy of The Widow by Fiona Barton – one of Audible’s best-selling crime novels – for free during the first week of submissions.

The winning author will be selected from the shortlist in Spring 2018 by a judging panel which includes: Sunday Times Best-Seller and two-time Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel Of The Year winner Mark Billingham; Sunday Times Best-Seller and CWA Dagger In The Library winner Sharon Bolton; The Girl On The Train and The Widow narrator Clare Corbett, the Daily Telegraph’s Crime Critic Jake Kerridge and Audible’s Director Of Content Laurence Howell.

The winning author will receive a £10,000 advance, accountable against royalties, for an exclusive Worldwide English language audio publication deal, as well as mentoring from Audible’s panel of judges.

Laurence Howell, Senior Director at Audible, said: “Audio offers enormous potential for creators to connect with new listeners, and we’re always looking for ways to delight our members with gripping new debuts. This New Writing Grant marries those two aims together perfectly. It allows us to support, daring, innovative storytelling whilst also giving our listeners access to exclusive audio stories we know they’ll love. We’ve commissioned original works from Philip Pullman, Robert Caro and Tom Rachman amongst others, now we’re looking to nurture the next generation of writing talent.

Mark Billingham, author of the Tom Thorne series, said: “What’s special about this kind of storytelling is the intimate connection with the listener. We’ll be looking for stories that create suspense and tension through classic techniques such as the cliffhanger and the twist, but more importantly we’ll be looking for strong, multidimensional characters that really engage and resonate with the listener. Everyone loves being told a great story and that is exactly what we’re looking for.”

Clare Corbett, narrator of The Girl On The Train, said: “There are certain elements that are key to whether a novel will work in audio. Writers should think about how they would naturally speak – we rarely talk as formally as we write and rhythm is really important. A bit of variety in sentence length and structure will hold a listener’s attention and leaving space for silence is central to tension-building. These are some things we’ll be considering throughout the judging process.”

To enter, applicants must email (in Word or PDF format) a copy of their manuscript, submission letter and synopsis of the story to [email protected] before 23:59 on 30th November 2017. Terms and conditions apply, please visit for full details.

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