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The 2021 judges

One of the great strengths of The Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award is the quality and experience of its judging panels which have featured an array of outstanding writers.

Andrew Holgate

Andrew Holgate

Andrew Holgate has been the Literary Editor of The Sunday Times since 2008. Amongst many other prizes and awards, he has previously been a judge for the Samuel Johnson Prize, the Orwell Prize, the Somerset Maugham Awards and the Betty Trask Prize. He is also a member of the Folio Prize Academy.

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Romesh Gunesekera

Romesh Gunesekera is the author of many acclaimed works of fiction including Reef, which was shortlisted for the 1994 Booker Prize, The Sandglass, winner of the inaugural BBC Asia Award, and The Match, a ground-breaking cricket novel. His debut collection of stories, Monkfish Moon, was a New York Times Notable Book. Noontide Toll, published in 2014, captured a vital moment in post-war Sri Lanka. His latest novel, Suncatcher, returns to an earlier era and a story of divided loyalties and endangered friendship in the Ceylon of the 1960s.

His fiction has been translated into over a dozen languages and he is the recipient of many awards including a Premio Mondello in Italy. He was born in Colombo and lives in London. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

He was the chair of judges for the 2015 Commonwealth Short Story Prize and has also judged many other prizes including the Caine Prize and Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists 2013.

You can reach him at

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Yiyun Li

Yiyun Li is the author of four novels, two story collections, and a book of essays, including PEN/Jean Stein award-winning Where Reasons End, and her most recent novel, Must I Go. Her story, A Sheltered Woman, won 2015 Sunday Times Short Story Award. She has received fellowship from MacArthur Foundation and Guggenheim Foundation, and is a 2020 winner of Windham Campbell Prize. She teaches at Princeton University.

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David Mitchell

David Mitchell is the author of the novels Ghostwritten, number9dream, Cloud Atlas, Black Swan Green, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, The Bone Clocks and Slade House. He has been shortlisted twice for the Booker Prize and has won the John Llewellyn Rhys, Geoffrey Faber Memorial and South Bank Show Literature Prizes as well as the World Fantasy Book Award. In 2018, he received The Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence, given in recognition of a writer's entire body of work. His has co-written for the Netflix show Sense8 and the fourth Matrix movie, due for release in 2021.

In addition, David Mitchell together with KA Yoshida has translated from the Japanese two books by Naoki Higashida – The Reason I Jump: One Boy's Voice from the Silence of Autism and Fall Down Seven Times, Get Up Eight: A Young Man's Voice from the Silence of Autism.

He lives in Ireland with his family.

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Curtis Sittenfeld

Curtis Sittenfeld is the best-selling author of six novels, most recently Rodham. Her first story collection You Think It, I'll Say It was picked for Reese Witherspoon's Book Club; her second collection is titled Help Yourself. Her books have appeared on numerous Best Books of the Year lists and have been optioned for television and film. Her stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Esquire, The Financial Times, and the Best American Short Stories, of which she was the 2020 guest editor.