The Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction
Honouring the achievements of the founding father of the historical novel, the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction is one of the most prestigious literary prizes in the world. With a total value of £30,000, it is unique for rewarding writing of exceptional quality which is set in the past.
Sponsored by Sir Walter Scott’s distant kinsmen the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch, the Prize celebrates quality, innovation and longevity of writing in the English language, and is open to books first published in the previous year in the UK, Ireland or the Commonwealth. Reflecting the subtitle ‘Sixty Years Since’ of Scott’s most famous work Waverley, the majority of the storyline must have taken place at least 60 years ago.
The Prize was founded in 2010, and is awarded at the Borders Book Festival in Melrose, Scotland, in June every year. The winner receives £25,000 and four shortlisted authors each receive £1000, along with the opportunity for a writers retreat on the island of Jura.
The Young Walter Scott Prize
Watch this space for news of a new Prize for young writers, which will be announced in March 2015. The Young Walter Scott Prize is a short story-writing competition which builds on the current passion for history and historical subjects amongst young people aged between 11 and 19. It looks back to the source of Sir Walter Scott’s inspiration – his childhood and youth amongst the stories of the Borders hills and people.
Building on the reputation and success of the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, it was the Duchess of Buccleuch’s vision to extend the Prize to young people, thereby celebrating and encouraging the historical novelists of the future.