Sunday, 25 July 2010

The CWA New Blood Dagger Shortlist

What would induce me to get up at 5.30 in the morning? The mystery grew darker as I hurried to catch the first train up to London. Was I going on holiday? No, although the reason for my excursion begins with the same letter… Sorry, as a crime writer I tend to think in ‘clues’, but without more ado, I’ll come clean and confess: I was travelling to Harrogate as an invited guest at the ITV3 Crime Thriller Season Launch Ceremony sponsored by Specsavers.
The shortlist for the Crime Writers’ Association John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger was announced at a lunchtime ceremony at the The Crown Hotel, Harrogate during the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival. This award is made in memory of CWA founder John Creasey, for first books by previously unpublished writers.
CWA Chairman Tom Harper said: “The CWA Dagger Awards have always enjoyed huge prestige among crime fiction fans and authors. The shortlists this year are incredibly strong, and that for the John Creasey has some exciting new talents, all working at the top of their game.”
The shortlisted books:
Acts of Violence, Ryan David Jahn (Pan)
Cut Short, Leigh Russell (No Exit Press)
Martyr, Rory Clements (John Murray)
Random, Craig Robertson (Simon & Schuster)
Stop Me, Richard Jay Parker (Allison & Busby)
Rupture, Simon Lelic (Picador)
The Holy Thief, William Ryan (Mantle )
The Pull of the Moon, Diane Janes (Robinson)

And if you haven’t worked it out yet – check the second book on the list.

At the risk of sounding conceited, I'm feeling pleased with myself, as you can see in the photo on the right (courtesy of Ali Karim.)
In this photo (left) from Harrogate I'm flanked by two Giants of Crime Fiction, Ian Rankin and Mark Billingham (and I was wearing my highest heels...) If you've met them, you'll know they are not only brilliant writers but very entertaining company.

The Daggers will be awarded at a televised ceremony in the Autumn, as part of the Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards, details of which were also announced at the ceremony at Harrogate.
CWA Chairman Tom Harper (pictured) said: “The CWA Dagger Awards have always enjoyed huge prestige among crime fiction fans and authors. The shortlists this year are incredibly strong, from exciting new talents to established masters, all working at the top of their game. We’re thrilled with the way Cactus TV and ITV3 have embraced the Daggers to bring them to the widest possible audience. Together with the retail promotion, more people than ever are now getting the chance to discover the best crime writing in the UK.”
The CWA Dagger Awards are the longest established literary awards in the UK and are internationally recognised as a mark of excellence and achievement.
So I was there to hear my name read out as one of the eight authors shortlisted for the John Creasey New Blood Dagger Award.
Was I excited? What do you think! Excited, proud, and completely stunned.

I'm very pleased we took some photos, or I don't think I'd believe this is really happening. Here I am with Linda Regan, a fellow Mystery Woman.
And finally, a big thank you to my publisher for opening these doors for me. http://www.noexit.co.uk/index.php
Now - back to Geraldine Steel. I have another book to write, and my fictional world seems more believable than my life right now!
But before I go, here's CUT SHORT... Did I mention it's been shortlisted for the CWA 2010 John Creasey New Bloood Dagger Award?

26 comments:

Val said...

Thanks for the explanation of CWA!

Congrats, and this is some 'heady' news.
Very cool, and it is wonderful to see your photos too!

Leigh Russell said...

Hi Val - yes, I was pleased with the photos, even if I do look like a munchkin... and I thought I was looking so elegant in my highest heels...

Star said...

Sigh, I can only curtsy ma'am! You are the queen of crime writers and I am very proud to know you. Good luck and keep us informed.
Blessings, Star

Leigh Russell said...

I felt like a queen for a day, Star. Back down to earth now, and chores to do... (sigh) Still, it was an amazing experience and one I won't forget. Thanks for the good wishes.

fizzycat said...

All I can say is wow!
Well done!

Leigh Russell said...

Hi fizzycat - haven't heard from you in a while. Good to hear from you and thank you.

Pat said...

Wow! All that success and dishy men to boot. Who's the lucky one?
Congrats!

Leigh Russell said...

Hi Pat, It's a hard life... ! Thanks for the good wishes.

Debs said...

That's so fantastic. Congratulations.

I can't believe how tall those two are.

Leigh Russell said...

Yes! and Tom Harper of the CWA is tall too! In face, everyone's tall except me... um...

DJ Kirkby said...

Great photos. Congratulations! You have every reason to feel proud!

Leigh Russell said...

Thanks, DJKirkby - and the same to you!

Akasha Savage. said...

OMG. Ian Rankin AND Mark Billington!! How exciting is that! :D

Akasha Savage. said...

Doh! Billingham!! :)

Leigh Russell said...

Very very exciting! They are exceptionally nice guys, and very entertaining, as well as amazing authors. It was an absolutely brilliant experience.

fizzycat said...

Looks great,too cool for words.
Yes on the subject of slugs we sometimes get those giants.The sort of slug where you say "um" before reaching for something to catch and place the thing with in green bin.
I did some years ago squash them (gross) but that brought more. That was very horror film."When slugs attack"

Leigh Russell said...

Yeuch slugs... yeeeuuuucccchhhh (is that the sort of word an author should be using??

Chris Stovell said...

Absolutely thrilled for you, Leigh - what a boost for you. And lovely photos too. All best, Cx

Leigh Russell said...

Thanks, Chris. Yes, a boost is exactly what it was.

BaggieAggie said...

Congratulations again, Leigh! And thanks so much for visiting and commenting on my blog. :-)

(In case you're unaware, you know me as Rosie on WW. x)

Leigh Russell said...

Totally unaware, Rosie! It always amazes me when the dots join up.

Talli Roland said...

That's fantastic, Leigh! I can only imagine how cool it would be to be in the presence of all those authors! And to *be* one of those authors!

Leigh Russell said...

Yes, for a day I was one of *them* - now back to earth. But I had my day!

Anonymous said...

Way to go, you! Congratulations on the CWA listing! You are to be commended. I'm sure you worked very hard for it, all writers do, and it's wonderful that you are being recognised for your efforts. Smiles and hugs all around.
Canadian Chickadee

Leigh Russell said...

Hmmm a comment from an anonymous visitor. How intriguing. Thank you for the kind comment, Canadian Chickadee

JJ Beattie said...

Fantastic news Leigh. Congratulations.