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In 2012 we launched the Costa Short Story Award, given to a single story and not voted for against the other categories. The public votes for the winner from six shortlisted stories selected by our five judges and published on this website. All shortlisted stories are available on this page to download and either listen to or read.
Congratulations to last year’s winners and two runners-up – Zoe Gilbert, Paula Cunningham and Joanne Meek.
Click here to read more about them.
All six shortlisted stories from last year are available lower down this page to download and either listen to or read.
Entry to this year’s competition is now closed. Thank you so much for all your entries!
This year’s shortlisted six stories will be announced in November. Until then, you can still enjoy all previously shortlisted stories by scrolling down this page and downloading them either to listen to or read.
Click here to read more about this year's judges.
You can read the Terms and Conditions here.
2014Winner: Zoe Gilbert for Fishskin, HareskinSecond: Paula Cunningham for The MatchboyThird: Joanne Meek for Jellyfish
2013 Winner: Angela Readman for The Keeper of the Jackalopes Second: Kit de Waal for The Old Man and the Suit Third: Tony Bagley for The Forgiveness Thing
2012 Winner: Avril Joy for Millie and Bird Second: Chioma Okereke for Trompette de la Mort Third: Guy Le Jeune for Small Town Removal
All shortlisted stories are available here for you to download and enjoy:
Download and Listen to the 2014 StoriesDownload and Read the 2014 StoriesClick here to read more about the 2014 Authors
Download and Listen to the 2013 StoriesDownload and Read the 2013 StoriesClick here to read more about the 2013 Authors
Download and Listen to the 2012 Stories Download and Read the 2012 StoriesClick here to read more about the 2012 Authors
Thank you for confirming your vote. Your vote will now be officially counted.
Produced and recorded for the Costa Short Story Award by Spoken Ink
DOWNLOAD ALL SIX STORIES (.ZIP)
“What use is that?” Turpin says as Ervet struggles to lift the pot and swings it too quickly to the hearth, spilling water onto the stones. He is already gathering up cap and boots, stamping his feet on the gritty rug. “What use, Ervet? Now I’ll go without warming.” …
“It is evening as we arrive. The salty air is cool and quiet after the motorway noise and smog. There’s this point as you approach the Haven: you turn a corner at the top of the hill, and everything seems to fall away. The cut of the cliff curves round on either side …”
“As soon as I see the bottle he is blowing - the ripple on the side, the wart of liquid more viscous than the rest - I know I'll be able to have this one. I can see little signs of disappointment on my father's face. Sometimes I wonder how he keeps it all in ...”
“His best girl works for the circus and smells of hay and meat. The boss makes her wear heavy makeup so the men in the back row can see how plump her cheeks are, how pink her lips, and she tastes of Pond’s cold cream when he kisses her after she’s home...”
“The boy has already been round all the shops. The Cash and Carry at the bottom of Castle Street has a catering pack of forty-eight boxes of Bo Peep matches, with thirty-eight safety matches in each box. He’s done the sums, long multiplication by hand, in his jotter …”
“Rosa woke to the sound of hammer and nail, hammer and nail. Eyes tight shut she listened, waiting for the curse words she knew would come. There... there was one; as a nail bent, as the hammer missed and jarred along his arm, as he thwacked his thumb …”