Donald S Murray - former teacher at The Nicolson Institute and Sgoil Lionacleit - has been given a place on the shortlist for Best First Novel of the Year for his work As The Women Lay Dreaming, a novel set amid the Iolaire disaster.
Donald, from Ness but now living in Shetland, said last night: "I'm astonished and amazed to reach the final hurdle in the Authors Club shortlist for the Best First Novel of the Year. I never dreamed this would happen!
"It means a trip down to London for the Awards Ceremony. (I doubt they'll serve guga.)
"My thanks to all those who helped me in this, including my editor Craig Hillsey, publisher Sara Hunt and those who love and support me.
"My gratitude, too, to all who have worked recently in a creative and wonderful way with me, including Donald Anderson, Kathleen MacInnes, Iain MacIver and others, especially the people of Ness. The age of miracles is not past."
Founded in 1891 to provide a place where writers could meet and talk, the Authors’ Club is one of Britain’s oldest literary institutions. Within the magnificent premises of the National Liberal Club in Whitehall, it provides a home from home for writers, editors, agents and all those professionally engaged with literature and the publishing industry.
Saraband publisher Sara Hunt says: “It’s well-deserved recognition for a beautifully written, powerful book by a talented writer. The novel also reveals Donald’s sensitivity in the way he’s taken on an unspeakable disaster and portrayed its aftermath in the community he grew up in.”
The winner will be announced at the The National Liberal Club on Wednesday 22nd May.