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Judging the 8th Mairtín Crawford Poetry Award will be: Kathleen McCracken and Dawn Watson.

Whilst the 7th Short Story Award will be judged by: Lucy Caldwell (Chair) and Wendy Erskine.

Kathleen McCracken is the author of eight collections of poetry including Blue Light, Bay and College, shortlisted for the Governor General's Award for Poetry, and a bilingual English/Portuguese edition entitled Double Self Portrait with Mirror: New and Selected Poems. She was a finalist for the WB Yeats Society of New York Poetry Competition, the Montreal International Prize for PoetryThe Walrus Poetry Prize, and the CBC Poetry Prize. In 2019 she won the Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing. She has held several Ontario Arts Council awards and an Individual Artist Award from the Northern Ireland Arts Council. Her poems have appeared in The Malahat ReviewPoetry Canada ReviewExile QuarterlyPoetry IrelandThe ShopThe Belfield Literary ReviewNew Orleans Review and Grain, and she has given readings in Canada, Ireland, Portugal, Brazil, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Dawn Watson is a poet and writer from Belfast. Her debut collection We Play Here is published by Granta Poetry (2023). Her pamphlet The Stack of Owls is Getting Higher is published by The Emma Press (2019). Dawn won the Ruth West Poetry Scholarship Award at Queen’s University in 2017 and completed a PhD in poetry at the Seamus Heaney Centre in 2022. Her thesis is titled Strangely Alive: Elizabeth Bishop’s Poetic Prose and the ‘Art of Story Writing. Dawn has written for BBC Radio 4, and her work has appeared in journals such as Granta magazine and The Poetry Review. She is the recipient of an ACES award and a General Arts Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Dawn is a lecturer in creative writing at Queen’s University, Belfast.

Lucy Caldwell is the author of four novels, most recently These Days, which won the 2023 Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, three short story collections, Multitudes, Intimacies, and the forthcoming Openings (May 2024), and several stage plays and radio dramas. She is also the editor of Being Various, the latest volume in the ongoing Faber series of New Irish Short stories. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, her awards include the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, the Dylan Thomas Prize, the George Devine Award for Most Promising Playwright, and a Major Individual Artist Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. In 2021 she won the prestigious BBC National Short Story Award for her story All the People Were Mean and Bad and in 2022 was awarded the EM Forster Prize from the American Academy of Arts & Letters.

Wendy Erskine is the author of two short story collections, Sweet Home and Dance Move. She edited an anthology, well I just kind of like iton art in the home and the home as art. Her non-fiction has appeared in The Guardian, the Quietus and many other publications. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, she has been listed for the Edgehill Prize, the Republic of Consciousness Prize, the Gordon Burn Prize and The Sunday Times Short Story Award. She was awarded the Butler Prize for Literature. She hosts a radio show on Soho Radio for Rough Trade Books and is a full-time secondary school teacher. 





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