rom The Iron Man to The Day of the Triffids to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; from The Hunger Games to Gone to The Knife of Never Letting Go, science fiction remains incredibly popular across all media.
Offering clues to the future and glimpses of what can and must not be, science fiction novels often stand as a form of protest and pose the question: What can reimagining the world teach us?
At a time of extraordinary global change and societal and environmental turmoil, Faber launches this prize for fiction that shines a spotlight on the immense power and value of the natural world and explores the enormous number of potential outcomes for our collective future.
Some of the most imaginative and immersive fiction is science fiction, but there isn’t enough of it. Particularly now when young adults need great escapism that offers hope and that sense of wonder often associated with this genre. So, that is what we’re looking for in launching this prize. We want to leave an inspiring legacy of books that thrill and empower young adults and show them that their behaviour and thinking is enormously important. We want to encourage them to go on to invent and build the solutions that will transform our existence. This is a call for literary environmental action, to refuel hearts and minds!
Guest judges for the Imagined Futures Prize include Battlestar Galactica actor Jamie Bamber, Laura Dodd, Head Book Buyer at Forbidden Planet and Duncan Bell, Professor of Political Thought and International Relations at the University of Cambridge.
The in-house Faber judges (pictured) include Leah Thaxton, Publisher, Natasha Brown, Project Editor/Editor and Viki Cheung, International Sales Manager.
Jamie Bamber, Judge said: ‘My experience working on one of television’s modern sci-fi classics has changed my life. Battlestar Galactica was able to engage so many people at a moment when we felt we were in a civilisational crisis after the 9/11 attacks. The message of that story was that hope, even if it has to be manufactured in the darkest of hours, is the oxygen of humanity; it sustains our collective faith that life can be lived well and with a purpose that supersedes each of us. As a father of three teenage girls who are each avid readers, I am convinced that science fiction is uniquely placed to explore the wider dramatic narrative of the human race and the hope that we must find if we are to negotiate the challenges our children will face. That is why I am particularly excited to be involved with Faber’s inaugural Imagined Futures Prize. I cannot wait to get reading.’
Laura Dodd, Head Book Buyer at Forbidden Planet and Judge said: ‘We are very excited to be part of the Imagined Futures Prize this year. Indeed, Forbidden Planet has built its reputation over the last 42 years on all things and worlds fantastical! We are always delighted to help recognise the brightest new talents in the genre!’
Professor Duncan Bell, Judge said: ‘I’m delighted to serve as a guest judge for the Imagined Futures Prize. Sparking the imagination of young adults and inspiring them to think in creative and productive ways about how we might confront the climate crisis together, is a vital role for speculative literature. I’m looking forward to reading some exciting stories.’
First Prize: A worldwide publishing contract with Faber with a £15,000 advance (subject to contract)
Second Prize: A worldwide publishing contract with Faber with a £8,000 advance (subject to contract)
Third Prize: A worldwide publishing contract with Faber with a £5,000 advance (subject to contract)
Plus a tour of the Faber Archive to see first editions of some of the best of Faber’s science fiction.
A young adult (for 12–18 year olds) novel or collection of short stories that can be (loosely) defined as science fiction, comprising: the first 10,000 words and a full synopsis of the novel in 500 words maximum, or a full manuscript and 500 word synopsis.
– A radical reimagining of a world in which all life has equal importance
– Humankind playing second fiddle to Plantkind
– A molecular explosion that completely reconfigures our world and us too
– Space habitation
– Waste not want not – truly, literally living alongside all our debris
– Technological innovation that eliminates all waste, erosion and inbuilt obsolescence
– Human/world compatibility reaches new levels of extraordinary . . .
– Extraterrestrial life is real, and so is their desire to ‘improve’ us
What we are NOT looking for!
– Angry polemics
Agented and unagented writers resident in the UK (who may or may not already be published). Our stipulations are therefore that you are over 18 and, for the purposes of touring on publication to the best of your ability, that you are a resident in the UK at time of submission.
Entries open: 8th November 2021
Closing date for entries: 9th September 2022
Winners announcement: Winter 2022
Please check the Terms and Conditions below and then submit your entry and any queries to:
Terms and Conditions
Below are the terms and conditions of Faber and Faber Limited’s (“Faber”) Imagined Futures Prize (“the Competition”).
– By entering the Competition, you are confirming that you agree to the following terms and conditions and will be described as an “Entrant” below.
– Entrants to the Competition must be 18 years or older and a resident of the United Kingdom.
– The Competition is not open to employees or contractors of Faber, their immediate families, or any other person connected with the Competition.
– Each entry (“Entry”) shall be either a young adult (for 12-18 year olds) novel, or collection of short stories which can be defined as “science fiction” written in English, comprising either:
– The first 10,000 words and a full synopsis of the novel/short story collection, in no more than 500 words; or
– A full manuscript of the novel/short story collection, and a full synopsis, in no more than 500 words.
– Previously self-published Entries are accepted.
– Entries are limited to one Entry per person, and must be submitted via email only as a Word document of a PDF to firstname.lastname@example.org. Entries made by any other method will not be accepted.
– The Competition shall run from 00:00 on 8th November 2021 until 23:59 on 9th September 2022. Any Entry to the Competition received outside of these times will not be considered.
– Entries that do not meet the requirements of these Terms and Conditions shall not be read.
– Any Entry containing incorrect, false or unreadable information will be rejected.
– Any Entry made on behalf of, or for another person, or multiple submissions will not be read.
– Faber reserves the right to amend these Terms and Conditions at any time and may amend or withdraw the Competition at any time.
– Entrants retain all copyright in their Entry, and by entering the Competition confirm that they are free to enter into a publishing agreement with Faber for the Entry, and that the Entry is original to the Entrant and has not been previously published in any form or language anywhere throughout the world. They also confirm that the Entry does not contain anything libellous, defamatory or obscene and does not infringe the copyright or any other proprietary right of any third party.
– By entering the Competition, an Entrant agrees that, if they win, in order to receive their prize they will need to enter into a standard publishing agreement with Faber & Faber Limited for worldwide, all language publication rights (including eBook and audio rights) (“the Publishing Agreement”). Should a successful entrant choose not to enter into the Publishing Agreement, they shall forfeit the prize and no other substitute prize shall be available to them.
– There is no obligation on Faber to publish any of the Entrants to the Competition. No correspondence between Faber and Entrants shall be entered into, unless at Faber’s request, and Faber will not respond to any unsolicited communications.
– Faber’s decision is final, no correspondence shall be entered into, unsuccessful Entrants will not be notified and no feedback will be provided.
– In the event that the judges determine that none of the Entries are suitable for publication, or appropriate to a YA readership, the judges shall nonetheless select the best three Entries in accordance with these terms and conditions and will award alternative cash prizes, plus editorial consultation with the Faber Children’s Editorial team.
– Faber is not able to return any Entries, so Entrants must retain a copy of their Entry for their records.
– By entering into the Competition, you are agreeing that if you win, your name and image may be used for the purpose of announcing the winner in any related publicity with Faber without additional payment or permission. You can withdraw your consent to this at any time.
– Faber reserves the right to exclude an entrant or withhold prizes for any violation by an Entrant of these Terms and Conditions. Entrants are expected to act fairly and in the good spirit of competition. Faber reserves the right to investigate any irregularities and disqualify entrants at its sole discretion.
– Under no circumstances shall Faber be responsible for any loss, damages, costs or expenses arising from or in any way connected with an errors, defects, interruptions, or delays in the promotion of the Competition nor shall Faber be responsible for any loss, changes, costs or expenses which may arise in connection with the Competition.
– Any disputes relating to the Competition will be governed by the laws of England and Wales and will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts.