Baileys Prize: Ali Smith wins for How to be Both


alismith-bailey award

Ali Smith has won the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction for her time-shifting novel How to Be Both.
The judges hailed the Scottish writer’s work as “tender, brilliant and witty”.

A visibly shocked Smith was presented with the £30,000 prize at a ceremony at London’s Royal Festival Hall on Wednesday night.

“It’s unbelievable, it’s glorious and it feels like an astonishing fluke,” she told the BBC after her win.

Ali Smith’s novel intertwines the stories of a 15th Century painter and a contemporary teenager

How to be Both has already made its mark on the literary scene, having won the 2014 Costa Novel Award and the 2014 Goldsmiths Prize. It was also shortlisted for the 2014 Man Booker Prize and the 2015 Folio Prize.

Born in Inverness in August 1962, Smith lives in Cambridge. As well as four short story collections, her novels include Hotel World and The Accidental, which won the Whitbread Novel Award.
Smith was made a CBE for services to literature in the 2014 New Year’s Honours List.
Formerly known as the Orange Prize for Fiction, the Baileys Prize is open to any woman writing in English.

Last year’s prize went to A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing by Ireland’s Eimear McBride.
In addition to the Baileys Prize announcement, Claire Rilett was named as the winner of the First Chapter competition for unpublished writers.

Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction 2015 shortlist

The 2015 Baileys shortlist
  • Outline by Rachel Cusk
  • The Bees by Laline Paull
  • A God in Every Stone by Kamila Shamsie
  • How to be Both by Ali Smith
  • A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler
  • The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters