Show Hide image Books 22 January 2015 Eimear McBride announced as judge for the 2015 Goldsmiths Prize McBride joins Jon McGregor, Josh Cohen and Leo Robson to judge the annual prize for innovative fiction. Print HTML Eimear McBride, whose debut novel A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing won the inaugural Goldsmiths Prize, has been announced as a judge for the 2015 prize. She is joined by Jon McGregor, the award-winning author of If Nobody Speaks of Unremarkable Things; Leo Robson, the New Statesman’s lead fiction reviewer; and Josh Cohen, Professor of Modern Literary Theory at Goldsmiths and author of The Private Life: Why We Remain in the Dark, who will chair the panel. The Goldsmiths Prize, which rewards “fiction at its most novel”, was launched by Goldsmiths, University of London, and the New Statesman in 2013. McBride – whose uncompromising, stream-of-consciousness novel was rejected by all the major UK publishers before it was eventually picked up by the independent imprint Galley Beggar Press – went on to sweep the board, winning everything from the Desmond Elliot Prize to the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. Last year the prize, established to “celebrate the qualities of creative daring associated with the University and to reward fiction that breaks the mould or opens up new possibilities for the novel form”, was awarded to Ali Smith for How to be Both, a book that – in the words of the chair of judges Francis Spufford – “confirms that formal innovation is completely compatible with pleasure – that it can be, in fact, a renewal of the writer's compact with the reader to delight and astonish.” The Goldsmiths Prize is making a dent the literary landscape. At an event at the Cambridge Literary Festival last year McBride revealed that her unexpected success had prompted several editors to return to submissions that they believed had substantial literary merit, but were deemed too difficult to market and unlikely to sell. Of winning the prize, she said: “After many years in the literary wilderness, receiving the inaugural Goldsmiths Prize, with the kind of work it was established to support, felt rather like a surprise invitation home.” Ali Smith described it as “about the thing closest to your heart if you work with the novel as a form”. The shortlist will be announced on 1 October and the winner on 11 November. Goldsmiths University are hosting a series of free events linked to the prize: 28 January 2015: Ali Smith 25 February 2015: Adam Thirlwell 11 March 2015: Will Self › Commons Confidential: Boy George’s pounds of flesh Tom Gatti is Culture Editor of the New Statesman. He previously edited the Saturday Review section of the Times, and can be found on Twitter as @tom_gatti. Subscribe More Related articles The marine, and human costs, of illegal fishing The life and times of the London cycle courier Why are we sometimes so reluctant to enjoy ourselves – even when we're allowed?