Tom Benn, Edward Hogan and Mark Illis shortlisted for Portico Prize.

Three UEA Creative Writing alumni have been shortlisted for this year’s Portico Prize for Literature, which is worth £10,000 to the winner and is intended to celebrate books set mainly or wholly in the North of England. Mark Illis graduated from the Creative Writing MA in 1987 and is shortlisted for his fifth novel, ‘The Last Word’, which was published by Salt in 2011. Edward Hogan graduated from the MA in Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) in 2004, when he was the recipient of that year’s David Higham Award. He is shortlisted for his second novel, ‘The Hunger Trace’, which was published by Simon and Schuster in 2011 and was previously shortlisted for the Encore Award. His first novel ‘Blackmoor’ was published in 2008 and shortlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize, the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award. Tom Benn (pictured) graduated from the UEA undergraduate programme in 2009 and the MA in Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) in 2010. He is shortlisted for his debut novel, ‘The Doll Princess’, which was published by Jonathan Cape earlier this year and is also in the running for the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger and the Dylan Thomas Prize. His second novel, ‘Chamber Music’, will be published in January 2013. The winner of the Portico Prize will be announced on 22nd November.

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