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Last Updated: Tuesday, 18 March 2008, 10:57 GMT
Controversial writer up for prize
Elif Shafak
Shafak wrote about the dissonance between the Turks and Armenians
Author Elif Shafak, who was prosecuted for "insulting Turkishness" in her book The Bastard Of Istanbul has been longlisted for the Orange book prize.

She faced charges for comments made by her characters on the mass killings of Armenians in the final years of the Ottoman Empire in the 20th Century.

A court in Istanbul eventually acquitted the novelist.

Turkish-born Shafak is one of 20 writers who have been longlisted for the British prize for women's writing.

Seven debut novelists have also been included on the list along with veteran writers like Deborah Moggach, who is longlisted for her 16th novel, In The Dark.

Anne Enright's The Gathering, which won the Man Booker prize 2007, has also been featured.

There's no such thing as male writing, any more then there's such a thing as women's writing. There's just good writing and bad writing
Tim Lott, writer

Linda Grant, who won the Orange prize in 2002 with When I Lived In Modern Times, is nominated again for her latest book, The Clothes On Their Backs.

The prize is open to any woman writing in English, whatever her nationality, country of residence, age or subject matter.

However, writer Tim Lott told BBC Radio 4's Today programme he thought the prize was wrong and introducing a male-only book prize for fiction was not the solution.

"I think it would invite massive derision and I would join in with that derision. I think the idea that there should be a prize for male writing is something I wouldn't want my writing to go into," he said.

"There's no such thing as male writing, any more then there's such a thing as women's writing. There's just good writing and bad writing."

The winner of the 30,000 prize will be announced on 4 June.

Life after Orange Prize success
28 Dec 07 |  Entertainment
Author Adichie wins Orange Prize
06 Jun 07 |  Entertainment

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