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Ted Hughes Award Shortlist Announced | 04-Mar-15

Julia Copus, Kei Miller and Grayson Perry have chosen their shortlist for the 2014 Ted Hughes Award. The final winner will be announced on 2 April at an awards ceremony in London, alongside the winner of the 2014 National Poetry Competition.

Congratulations to:

Patience Agbabi for Telling Tales
Imtiaz Dharker for Over the Moon
Carrie Etter for Imagined Sons
Andrew Motion for Coming Home
Alice Oswald for Tithonus

Established in 2009, the award highlights the ways in which poets engage with other art forms. In order to reflect the collaborative nature of the award, the judging panel comprises artists from a range of backgrounds: this year award-winning poets Julia Copus and Kei Miller join Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry to judge the award made possible by the Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy. She said of the award:

"It's a great pleasure to be introducing the 6th annual Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry. Combining poetry with a host of other forms of artistic expression, it has become one of the most significant prizes in the calendar. It acknowledges new and emerging artists producing original, innovative and vital works like Zones of Avoidance, the piece that made Maggie Sawkins the 2013 winner. As well as the prestige associated with being awarded a prize like this, it expands the reach of the winning work, bringing it, and its creator, to the attention of eager new audiences across the UK."

When it comes to the entries, Grayson Perry "will be looking to cry... I will be measuring the tears - although they may be tears of laughter" while Julia Copus will be searching for work that "leaves me more keen-sighted, able to see the world newly and distinctly" and that's exactly the kind of work that has come to be expected of the UK's most innovative poetry award. Kei Miller sums up saying:

"It's hard to say what I would look for in terms of 'innovation'. A lot of things are conventionally innovative - a bit of multimedia, a bit of hyperlinks thrown in. Perhaps then I'm just looking to be surprised, in a good way, and by something that accentuates the poetry rather than detracting from it. So much is available to us today - not just technology, but everything in the material world. The truly innovative poet will know how to choose carefully. That's I'm looking for - careful choices, surprising choices, smart choices."

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