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‘Grandmother’ Wins First Novel Competition

Last September, GC reported that Richard & Judy, building on the success of their book club, would host a first novel competition — its winner almost certainly guaranteed a red carpet stroll up the UK’s bestseller lists. Now, four months later, we finally learn who that lucky winner is: Christine Aziz, or — as the Independent and Guardian choose to name her in their ledes — ‘a 52-year-old grandmother‘ from Bournemouth.

Both papers go on to establish Aziz’s life as hard-knocked-and-miniseries-ready, listing Aziz’s previous, often low-paying, occupations: dental receptionist, singer, cleaning lady, factory packer, etc. And, in case readers missed the point, the Independent drops both the amount of Aziz’s advance (£50,000) and the age she left school (15) into the same sentence, for extra-special contrast.

Unreported, however, are Aziz’s many successes as a journalist, with regular bylines in the Independent and other well-known publications. But a good resume just doesn’t have the cue the talk show’s Muzak-punch of ’52-year-old grandmother,’ does it?

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Novel Writing: Editing Your DraftStarting July 16, workshop your novel in-progress with a published author! Erika Mailman's course will function as a workshop, with the emphasis on sharing your work for review and providing critiques for your peers. By the end of this class you'll have up to 75 pages of you novel workshopped and developed patterns to improve your writing. Register now!