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First Graphic Novel Competition

And the winner is… Jade Sarson

Myriad Editions is delighted to announce that winner of the 2014 First Graphic Novel Competition (FGNC) is Jade Sarson, selected from a very strong shortlist including Henny Beaumont, Francesca Cassavetti, Wallis Eates, Jessica Martin and Robert Wells. The biennial competition is for cartoonists, writers and artists who have not previously published a full-length graphic work. The shortlist can be viewed  here. The winner was announced at the First Graphic Novel Award event at the British Library on Friday 23rd May, as part of the UK's biggest ever exhibition of comic art, Comics Unmasked.

Winner Jade Sarson is offered the chance to develop her work with Myriad’s creative and editorial team, with a view to contract and publication. Jade will also be offered a week-long author’s retreat in a studio near Angouleme, France, home of the international comics festival for 40 years.

For a full report of the evening and links to Jade's work, please read judge Andy Oliver's wonderful report on the Broken Frontier website.  

The winner of the 2012 FGNC was The Black Project by Gareth Brookes, published in September 2013. Examples of his embroidered and lino-cut pages are on display in the exhibition. 

Judges of the 2014 FGNC were:

Andy Oliver, critic and blogger, Broken Frontier

Corinne Pearlman, Creative Director, Myriad Editions

Woodrow Phoenix, author of graphic essay Rumble Strip and co-editor of Nelson

Meg Rosoff, author of How I Live Now, Picture Me Gone and other novels

Nicola Streeten, author of graphic memoir Billy, Me & You


Brookes winner of 2012 competition

The inaugural First Graphic Novel Competition, the first ever competition for a first graphic novel in progress, was won in 2012 by Gareth Brookes. Brookes’ The Black Project was chosen from a very strong shortlist of seven, including the writer and artist team Adam Blackman and Dylan Shipley, and creators Con Chrisoulis, Hannah Eaton, Tom Eglington, Thom Ferrier and Paula Knight.

In all, seventy-four qualifying submissions were received, and the seven shortlisted works were chosen from a very strong longlist of twenty-one. The works were showcased and the winner announced at a packed gathering at the University of Sussex on Saturday 21st January 2012 at First Fictions, a weekend of events championing first novels past and present, jointly organised by Myriad Editions and the English Department at the University of Sussex.

The Black Project, a work created in embroidery and lino-cuts, was published by Myriad Editions in September 2013.

To see images of the shortlisted works, please visit First Fictions.

Read all the finalists' commentaries on their entries, on the Forbidden Planet website

The winning entry was chosen purely on the strength and promise of the art and writing by the panel of judges:

Steve Bell, cartoonist (Guardian)

Hannah Berry, graphic novelist (Britten & Brulightly)

Ed Hillyer (Ilya), cartoonist (King Lear, Skidmarks) and author (The Clay Dreaming

Corinne Pearlman, Creative Director, Myriad Editions 

Ian Rankin, author (Inspector Rebus series and other novels)

Bryan Talbot, graphic novelist (Grandville, Alice in Sunderland, The Tale of One Bad Rat)