Winning Prize: £10,000
Chair of Judges: Simon Savidge

The Portico Prize is a celebration of northern literature. Publishers and self-published authors are invited to submit titles in any format across fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Books must be published between 1st January 2017 and 31st July 2019 in the UK. Authors may be based anywhere. Above all, The Portico Prize seeks to celebrate the best writing that evokes the spirit of the North of England.

One prize of £10,000 will be awarded to the winning author. Shortlisted authors will be gifted with honourary membership of The Portico Library in 2020.

A longlist of fifteen titles will be chosen by The Society of Readers and Writers, a group of local literary enthusiasts appointed by The Portico Prize committee. From the longlist, a panel of five judges will identify a shortlist of six books from which they will finally select an overall winner. The Judges’ decision is final. The Judges have the right to withhold the prize and no correspondence will be entered into.

31st July 2019         Submission deadline

30th September 2019   Longlist announcement

22nd October 2019 Longlist event

November 2019   Shortlist announcement

January 2020       Announcement of winner and award presentation

The Portico Prize is awarded to the book that best evokes the spirit of the North of England.

  1. Books must be published for the first time* between 1st January 2017 and 31st July 2019.**

  2. Authors may be based anywhere in the world.

  3. Authors must be aged 16 and over (no upper age limit).

  4. Entries will be accepted from publishers and self-published authors.

  5. Books must be published with an ISBN number.

  6. Multiple titles can be submitted from the same publisher/author.

  7. Books must be published in the UK.

  8. All work submitted for consideration may be written in any style or form—including fiction, non-fiction and poetry—but must be the entrant's own original writing. Anthologies must be of author’s own work.

  9. Submissions must be published in English.

  10. Physical copies only will be accepted by post or hand delivery. Digital copies or e-books will not be considered.

  11. Four copies of each book must be provided per entry.

  12. If the book is longlisted five more books must be provided.

  13. The Portico Prize reserves the right to disqualify any entry if it has reasonable grounds to believe that the entrant has breached any of these Rules, or made a false declaration on the entry form.

  14. Entries will not be returned under any circumstances. Correspondence requesting returns will not receive a response.

  15. If finished published copies are not available by the 31st July 2019, bound proof may be submitted on condition that they are of good quality and that the content reflect that of the final book. If proofs are submitted, final copies should be sent in as soon as they are available and no later than 16th August 2019.

  16. The Portico Prize reserves the right to amend these Rules where it is deemed necessary to do so or where circumstances are beyond The Portico Prize’s control. Any changes to the Rules will be posted on The Portico Prize web page.

*New editions of titles first published prior to 2017 may be eligible if they have been re-published within the stipulated time frame and include significantly altered or updated content. In this case, copies of both the first published edition and new edition should be submitted. For more information, please contact: prize@theportico.org.uk

**Although we would have liked to have included books eligible for the 2015 prize, we have had to restrict the entry window for administrative purposes.

  1. There is a £50 fee per entry.

  2. If a book is shortlisted an additional £500 is required towards general publicity. The authors of self-published short-listed entries will be required to pay £100. Small publishing houses may also be eligible to apply for a reduced publicity fee. Please send inquiries to: prize@theportico.org.uk.

  3. A limited number of reduced price entries are available on request for smaller publishers and self-published authors. If you would like to apply for one of these, please email: prize@theportico.org.uk to register your interest and for further details.

  • The Society of Readers and Writers, an appointed group of fifteen locally based book lovers and literary enthusiasts, will collectively draw up a longlist of 15 titles.

  • From the longlist, a judging panel will select a shortlist of 6 books and finally one winner will be announced in January 2020.

  • Judges are at liberty to co-opt one book to the longlist if this is deemed necessary.

  • One prize of £10,000 will be awarded to the winning author.

  • Shortlisted authors will be gifted with honourary membership of The Portico Library in 2020.

  • Both winning and shortlisted authors are invited to join The Society of Readers and Writers. More information will be announced soon.

  • Presentation of the award will be announced at a special event in January 2020 at The Portico Library in partnership with The Bank Pub, which is situated beneath the Library. For one special evening this will unite the building again for the first time in 100 years, hosted by writer, columnist and playwright, Damian Barr.

  • Shortlisted publishers and authors must be available for media interviews and to participate in Portico Prize related events and engagement run by the Portico and Manchester Metropolitan University.

  • The winning author will be required to participate in at least one legacy event for The Portico Prize as well as one creative writing session at Manchester Writing School.

  • For further information and to receive updates, please contact: prize@theportico.org.uk