Windrush author backs prize for unpublished writers of colour

Louise Hare in a video promoting her book

The author of an acclaimed novel about the Windrush Generation will promote the Morley Prize for Unpublished Writers of Colour in an online event on Wednesday (28 July).

Louise Hare, author of This Lovely City and a judge for the prize, will present an online author event in support of the prize with a reading from her novel and take part in a Q&A about her writing, research and engagement with the Windrush story.

This Lovely City is her first novel, set in London in the aftermath of the Second World War. The title is a line from Windrush calypsonian Lord Kitchener’s London is the Place for Me.

It tells the story of Lawrie Matthews, a musician who arrived in London on the Empire Windrush, and the opportunity, excitement, prejudice and love he finds in the city.

Louise Hare is London-based and has an MA in creative writing from Birkbeck, University of London.

She was named one of the Observer’s 10 best debut novelists of 2020.

This Lovely City featured on the inaugural BBC Two TV book club show, Between the Covers, and was shortlisted for this year’s Royal Society of Literature’s Ondaatje Prize.

The Morley Prize for Unpublished Writers of Colour, a partnership between Morley College in London and Rachel Mills Literary agency, is an opportunity to recognise talented but undiscovered writers of colour.

The online conversation with Louise Hare begins on Wednesday at 6pm. To participate, register free on Eventbrite.

Morley College and Rachel Mills Literary launched the Morley Prize for Unpublished Writers of Colour as an opportunity for aspiring fiction writers from ethnic minority backgrounds seeking to break into publishing.

RML’s Nelle Andrew, agent of the year at the British Book Awards 2021, said: “The Morley Prize for Unpublished Writers of Colour is a brilliant opportunity to source talent and give a platform to incredible new voices who may not have had the exposure or encouragement to enter the publishing industry and talent pool before.”

The aim of the prize is to discover and empower writing talent from diverse British backgrounds and to continue the rich cultural history of diverse authors who have defined and distinguished writing in Britain.

It is open to any person of colour who is has not been published and does not have an agent to submit an extract from a novel, whether it is unfinished or finished, for the chance to win insight and editorial feedback from Nelle Andrew, herself a woman of colour, as well as prize money.

Applications close on 22 August 2021. Application instructions and full terms and conditions are on the Morley Gallery website.