Glennis Virgo wins Debut Writers Over 50 Award

Glennis Virgo, a retired primary school headteacher from Essex, has won the inaugural Debut Writers Over 50 Award. 

The award was created to address the lack of literary opportunities available to older writers eager to break into the publishing industry and to celebrate and value their collected, distilled wisdom, and a lifetime of reading and experience. 

The award is open to all writers over 50, and the winner receives a £1,000 cash prize and a week’s residential course at Moniack Mhor, Scotland’s Creative Writing Centre. Shortlisted runners-up are offered tailored mentoring.

Virgo’s debut novel, Vile Apparel, is a historical novel that tells the story of Applefields Asylum in 1912. The novel explores an affair between a doctor and patient, and generations later, the dark truth starts to spill from the walls of a Glasgow house when a young archivist discovers hidden secrets and reunites a troubled family. 

The award was announced by Jenny Brown Associates Literary Agency on August 26, 2023, during the Edinburgh International Book Festival. 




Subscribe to our Newsletter
Stay up-to-date