Louise Holmwood Marshall is the Head of Department of English and Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University – the oldest English Department in Wales. She is a literary scholar who works on Restoration and Eighteenth-Century drama and the relationship between theatre and representations of national identity. She has published work focusing on the representation of Wales and Welshness in dramatic texts performed on the public stage in the 1700s and is currently working on a project that examines women’s communities in the context of performance. As Head of Department Louise has had the great pleasure of watching a plethora of new writers develop and grow during their time at Aberystwyth and she is delighted to be asked to sit on the judging panel for the Wales Book of the Year Awards and immensely excited to be part of this celebration of Wales’s literary culture.
Russell Celyn Jones
Russell Celyn Jones was raised in Swansea and is an author, feature writer and critic. He set up the MA Creative Writing Programme at Birkbeck College, University of London and was its’ Director for twelve years. His novels include The Ninth Wave; Surface Tension; The Eros Hunter; An Interference of Light and Small Times. His first novel, Soldiers and Innocents, won the David Hingham Prize and the Arts Council Wales’ Fiction Award (now the Wales Book of the Year Award). His novel,Ten Seconds from the Sun, won the Weishanhu Award in China for the, best foreign novel in translation. He was also awarded the Society of Authors Award in 1996.
He has judged the Man Booker Prize, Ondaatji Prize and the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize, and was a reviewer for The Times for fifteen years.
Sandeep Parmar is Professor of English Literature at the University of Liverpool. She holds a PhD from University College London and an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Her research interests are primarily modernist women’s writing and contemporary poetry and race. Her books include Reading Mina Loy’s Autobiographies: Myth of the Modern Woman, scholarly editions for Carcanet Press of the Collected Poems of Hope Mirrlees, The Collected Poems of Nancy Cunard as well as two books of her own poetry: The Marble Orchard and Eidolon, (Shearsman Books) winner of the Ledbury Forte Prize for Best Second Collection. Her essays and reviews have appeared in the Guardian, The Los Angeles Review of Books, the Financial Times and the Times Literary Supplement. She is a BBC New Generation Thinker and Co-Director of Liverpool’s Centre for New and International Writing. In 2017, she founded the Ledbury Emerging Poetry Critics Scheme for BAME reviewers and the Citizens of Everywhere project which focuses on broadening ideas of citizenship and belonging.
Welsh-language Wales Book of the Year Award Judges
Cathryn Charnell-White is Head of the Department for Welsh and Celtic Studies at Aberystwyth University. Her research focuses on Welsh identity, women and poetry, and literature in relation to weather in Early Modern Wales. Cathryn is also co-editor of Honno's Welsh Classics.
Dylan Ebenezer is an experienced broadcaster and a familiar face on our screens for the last 20 years, fronting Welsh sport programmes including S4C's Sgorio. At a young age, Dylan won a number of prose and poetry competitions at the Urdd and went on to publish a number of books following the progress of the Welsh football team in recent years.
Idris Reynolds is a retired librarian based in Brynhoffnant in the heart of Ceredigion. Over the years, Idris has won various awards at local, and National eisteddfodau including the Chair at the National Eisteddfod in the Conwy Valley (1989) and again in Aberystwyth (1992). His publications include two collections of poems and two biographies. His biography of Dic Jones, Darn o Haul Draw yn Rhywle: Cofio Dic (Gwasg Gomer) won the Wales Book of the Year Award in 2017.