Now that submissions are closed, what happens during the run up to the longlist announcement?
Once all novels have been downloaded they are assigned an entry number and individually matched with professional readers. We work with a hand-picked team which includes genre specialists and former winning or shortlisted authors.
All submissions are read “blind” with readers’ votes cast privately as a YES or NO answer to the question: do this extract and synopsis make you want to read the full?
We longlist every book the reader votes suggest could win. Sometimes a small number of books dominate the readers’ votes; in other years the votes are widely spread resulting in a longer list. Over the years our lists have ranged from 19 to 39 titles strong.
Readers can also award one ‘golden vote’ to an entry they can’t stop thinking about and would especially love to read in full. Novels which attract one or more golden votes are automatically longlisted, alongside the entries which attracted the highest number of’regular’ YES votes.
From June 20th to June 24th we will tweet a selection of the YES vote comments @bathnovelaward. Tweets will be searchable (or mutable) under the tag #BNA2020 and here are some examples from recent awards:
#BNA2018 “Blew me away like nothing I’ve read for the BNA before. I laughed when I read the synopsis because it was written dryly and out of character, as it should be, which made the voice in the MS even more incredible. YES”
— The Bath Novel Awards (@BathNovelAward) May 16, 2018
#BNA2019 “Breathtaking opening with a superbly raw, authentic voice. Deals with the sequence of generational violence, loss and grief. It reminded me a little of The Place Beyond the Pines, but with a fantastic supernatural angle. 💛Golden YES.”
— The Bath Novel Awards (@BathNovelAward) June 17, 2019
#BNA2019 Enticing hooks and suspense from the start – I can hear the silence and the sound of that spade – plus a synopsis full of red herrings and plot twists. YES
— The Bath Novel Awards (@BathNovelAward) June 18, 2019
Due to the volume of votes cast, we tweet only a representative selection of YES comments plus all the golden votes
The Bath Novel Award 2020 longlist announcement will be posted on our website at noon BST on Thursday 25th June. We don’t notify writers who have been longlisted beforehand and will email all entrants a prompt once the announcement is up.
The writers of the longlisted titles will then be invited to submit their full manuscript by 30th June 2020 for the final judging stages.
Best of luck to all, we can’t wait to read your work.