Author Julian Gough has been announced as the winner of the £15,000 National Short Story Prize.
The London-born writer, 40, won for The Orphan and The Mob, the tale of a young boy who flees a children's home.
"The comedy, energy and originality of both plot and voice set him ahead of the other contenders," said chair of the judges, broadcaster Mark Lawson.
My Beautiful Laundrette writer Hanif Kureishi was also nominated for his Iraq story Weddings and Beheadings.
Second place went to David Almond, who received £3,000 for Slog's Dad, about childhood in Tyneside. The other three shortlisted authors all get £500.
Gough's story forms the prologue to his book Jude: Level One, which will be published later this year.
"It's like the bit at the start of the Star Wars trilogy, where Luke Skywalker is working on his uncle's farm," said the author. "Except set in Tipperary."