Jhalak prize

Book of the Year by a Writer of Colour



Open: 15 September,

Close: 15 December 2020

Longlist Announcement:

9 March 2021

Shortlist Announcement:

13 April 2021

Winner announced

25 May 2021


Welcome to the home of the Jhalak Prize. 

First awarded in March 2017, the Jhalak Prize and its new sister award Jhalak Children’s & YA Prize founded in 2020, seek to celebrate books by British/British resident BAME writers. 

The prizes are unique in that they accept entries published in the UK by writers of colour. These include (and not limited to) fiction, non-fiction, short stories, graphic novels, poetry and all other genres. The Jhalak Children’s and YA Prize accepts books for children and  teens and young adults including picture books, chapter books, graphic novels, poetry, non-fiction, and all other genres by writers of colour and aimed at young readers. The prizes are also open to self-published writers. 

The Jhalak Prize was started in 2016 by authors Sunny Singh, Nikesh Shukla and Media Diversified, with support from The Authors’ Club and funds donated by an anonymous benefactor, the prize of £1000.  The Jhalak Children’s & YA Prize was founded in 2020 with a matching amount of £1,000 for the winner. The two prizes exist to support and celebrate writers of colour in Britain.


In Hindi and many related Northern Indian dialects, Jhalak means ‘glimpse’; implicitly brief, often tantalising with promise, piquing curiosity to explore further. It seems an appropriate name for what I believe is the first prize for Book Of The Year By A Writer of Colour. 

The Jhalak Prize will recognise the vastness of talent, ambition and creative vigour that is often overlooked by an industry that has yet to decolonize its gaze and acknowledge that we do not live in world of lactified centres and rainbow peripheries. 

-    The benefactor providing the prize money, who wishes to remain anonymous



The prizes usually open for submissions between September to December for books published between 1st January and 31st December of that calendar year. The books must have been published in the UK in that year, and originally published in English. The author of the work must have been resident in the UK for a minimum of the calendar year in which the book is eligible.

The prizes are unique in that it accepts entries published in the UK in 2020 by a writer of colour. The prize is also be open to self-published writers. The aim is the identify and celebrate the finest works by writers of colour in the country.

If you have any enquiries about the prize, please contact the Prize at info@jhalakprize.com

Jhalak ArtResidency 2020

Neda Koochakian Fard 

Neda Koochakian Fard - 2020.JPG
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