Lightship Publishing is an independent publisher based in Kingston-upon-Hull, UK.
We run the Lightship International Literary Prizes with the aim of discovering, mentoring, and publishing the best new writers (in English) from around the world. We won't be running the prizes in 2014 because we are developing a new website but we will be back in 2015.
Every November at our prize giving ceremony we award thousands of pounds to the winners of our contests. The winners, and the nine runners-up in the Short Story, Poetry, Flash Fiction, and One Page contests, are published in the annual anthology. You can purchase Lightship Anthology 1, 2 and 3 from Alma Books.
Lightship Anthology 2 is also available for download by clicking on the relevant link below:
We have published nearly 100 writers so far. And two Lightship winners have signed publishing deals for their debut novels as a direct result of placing in the Lightship contests. Jamaican-born Roland Watson-Grant was short listed in the 2011 Short Story Prize and signed a publishing deal with Alma to expand his story 'Sketcher' into a novel, The Sketcher. Nora Ann Brown won the inaugural First Chapter Prize, and after a year of expert mentoring from Tibor Fischer, Simon Trewin and Alessandro Gallenzi, has signed a deal for her debut novel, The Flower Plantation. For more information - please take a look at our News page.
Lightship is dedicated to promoting excellence in contemporary literature written in English. In this endeavour we are absolutely delighted to have the support of our honorary patrons: Sir Andrew Motion, former Poet Laureate and Chairman of the Man Booker Prize 2010; Christopher Reid, Winner of the 2009 Costa Book Of the Year Award; Lindsay Clarke, Winner of the Whitbread Prize, 1989; Hilary Mantel, two-time winner of the Man Booker Prize 2009/2012; Cynthia Ozick, finalist in the US National Book Award 1987, and short listed for the Orange Prize 2012.
'If fame is the spur, then surely, for the determined aspirant, the Lightship Idea can be a wingèd and caparisoned steed! (For what is the prize if not Pegasus?)'
'Lightship is an exciting venture, which will inspire and reward; it's a very welcome addition to the literary calendar.'
Sir Andrew Motion
'Lightship's excellent judges should attract excellent work, and to win a prize here will really mean something.'
'In these straitened times Lightship signals a whole new opportunity for poets and fiction writers to gain much needed recognition for their work, and is a very welcome arrival on the literary scene.'
Do you have a literary novel in you? Have you written the first 5,000 words and a synopsis? Enter First Chapter for a chance to win the dream prize of every aspiring novelist: expert mentoring while you are writing your novel.
Imagine getting priceless feedback from an acclaimed author, a top literary agent, and a publisher as you write your novel. If you win First Chapter you will receive three professional mentoring sessions over the course of a year from prize-winning Australian author M.J. Hyland; David Miller of Rogers, Coleridge and White Literary Agency; Alessandro Gallenzi of Alma Books. Your First Chapter will be published in Lightship Anthology 3 in 2013. If your finished novel is deemed as fabulous as your first chapter, David Miller will represent you, and Alma Books will publish it.
The deadline for all entries is 30th June 2013. So get writing that first chapter and a one-page synopsis now!
‘This is a staggering idea and a necessary idea. It's tough in the world ofbooks, perhaps as tough as its ever been, and getting a new work noticed by agents and publishers is tricky shit. When the best first chapter is chosen, when a winner is chosen, an exciting new literary career will begin.'
'In a world packed with courses that promise too much, and sometimes too little, it is great to be involved with an initiative that offers something different, which I hope will help new writers reach the audiences they deserve, whilst ensuring their burgeoning careers are given firm foundations.'
David Miller (Rogers, Coleridge and White Literary Agency)
'The first chapter makes or breaks any novel - this is why the Lightship 'First Chapter' prize is an excellent initiative. First Chapter will help new literary authors achieve recognition in a very competitive market. To be mentored by an experienced author, agent and publisher, who can offer constructive criticism and practical advice on how to edit and rewrite, is a fantastic opportunity for a novelist. As a publisher, I make it my business to discover and mentor and publish new literary voices, and I hope that this is what will happen with the winner of First Chapter.'
Alessandro Gallenzi, Publisher, Alma Books