After seventeen years working for the Asham Trust - and in particular administering the Asham Award - I shall be standing down this autumn.
I have had a wonderful time; met some amazing people and have seen so many new writers go on to make their names in the world of publishing. I have also worked with some of our finest professional writers who have contributed to the anthology over the years, others who have judged the competition and helped in so many other ways.
I am particularly grateful to Pete Ayrton of Serpent’s Tail, who published the first Asham anthologies when we were totally unknown; to Nigel Newton at Bloomsbury who published four anthologies, served as a trustee for many years and has supported Asham’s work from the start. Finally I would like to thank Lennie Goodings and her team at Virago for taking Asham to its present dizzy heights.
There are so many other people who have contributed to Asham’s success over the years - Camilla Dinkel for her work on the website; Kate Pullinger who has edited the collection for a decade; Diana Reich and everyone involved with the Small Wonder festival at Charleston, East Sussex. I believe our collaboration with Charleston has helped to raise the status of the short story in Britain.
The Asham Award has received generous sponsorship over the past 17 years from The Arts Council of England; Much Ado Books of Alfriston, East Sussex; the Booker Prize Foundation; the Garrick Trust; the John S. Cohen Foundation and Lewes Town Council. Your help has enabled us to achieve our goals.
Warm thanks to Stephanie Anderson and the Asham board of trustees for believing as I do in the importance of encouraging new writers and helping them take that first step on the ladder. Grateful thanks also to my assistant Lin Long who burnt the midnight oil so many times in processing the entries and helped to keep me sane over endless cups of coffee!
Finally, the award would not be possible without the hundreds who have entered the competitions and have produced some truly amazing short stories. I believe Asham was a trail blazer - thank you for helping to light the flame.
Please send any enquiries to the chair of the Asham Trust,c/o Town Hall, High street, Lewes, East Sussex, BN7 2QS