17 December 2012
The judges are: Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, Natalie Haynes, Martha Kearney and Stuart Kelly. The panel is chaired by Robert Macfarlane, academic, critic and writer.
Robert Macfarlane comments on behalf of the panel:
The first books are in, and the reading begins: the 2013 Man Booker jury starts its work this week. I am fortunate to be joined on this year's panel by four outstanding judges: the renowned broadcaster, bee-keeper and former Chair of the Orange Prize for Fiction, Martha Kearney; the critic, academic and prize-winning biographer, Robert Douglas-Fairhurst; the broadcaster, classicist and critic, Natalie Haynes; and Stuart Kelly, essayist, polymath and former literary editor of Scotland on Sunday. We are all looking forward to the ten months, 140 novels and many meetings and conversations that lie ahead of us, as we search for the very best of contemporary fiction.
The judges mission is to select as a winner the novel of the highest literary quality from the past year. Between them, they will read over 100 novels submitted by UK publishers. The judges will announce the 2013 Man Booker Dozen 12 or 13 longlisted books on 23 July 2013, with the shortlist of six outstanding titles announced on 10 September 2013. The winner of the 2013 Man Booker Prize for Fiction will be announced on Tuesday 15 October 2013, at an awards ceremony at Londons Guildhall.
On the impact of the prize, former winner Howard Jacobson has commented:
I have seen from the inside the interest it generates, the new readers it finds, not just for winning the book, but if that book has the power to stimulate for literature in general. Books I wrote years ago, which I thought were long buried, have been touched back into life.
2013 will mark the 45th year of the £50,000 prize, launched in 1969. Hilary Mantel made history in 2012 when she won the prize for the second time with Bring up the Bodies, as the first woman and the first British author to win the prize twice.