By Nathan Lee
The Financial Times has introduced a new scheme encouraging young authors to tackle emerging business themes.
The Bracken Bower Prize has been launched by the FT alongside McKinsey & Company, organisers of the Business Book of the Year Award, with the aim of unearthing new talent and encouraging writers to research ideas that could fill future business books of the year.
A prize of £15,000 will be given for the best book proposal and will be awarded to a book about the challenges and opportunities of growth. The judging panel, which includes Lynda Gratton from the London Business School and Dame Gail Rebuck from Penguin Random House, will be looking for forward-looking ideas that provide a compelling and enjoyable insight into future trends in business, economics, finance or management. The judges will favour authors who write with knowledge, creativity, originality and style and whose proposed books promise to break new ground, or examine pressing business challenges in original ways.
The Bracken Bower Prize is named after Brendan Bracken who was chairman of the FT from 1945 to 1958 and Marvin Bower, managing director of McKinsey from 1950 to 1967, who were instrumental in laying the foundations for the present day success of the two institutions. This prize honours their legacy but also opens a new chapter by encouraging young writers and researchers to identify and analyse the business trends of the future.
Only writers who are under 35 on November 11 2014 (the day the prize will be awarded) are eligible. They can be a published author, but the proposal itself must be original and must not have been previously submitted to a publisher. The proposal should be no longer than 5,000 words – an essay or an article that conveys the argument, scope and style of the proposed book – and must include a description of how the finished work would be structured, for example, a list of chapter headings and a short bullet-point description of each chapter. In addition entrants should submit a biography, emphasising why they are qualified to write a book on this topic. The best proposals will be published on FT.com.
Finalists will also be invited to the November 11 dinner where the Bracken Bower Prize will be awarded alongside the Business Book of the Year Award, in front of an audience of publishers, agents, authors and business figures. Once the finalists’ entries appear on FT.com, authors will be free to solicit or accept offers from publishers. The closing date for entries is 5pm (BST) on September 30th 2014.
Full rules for The Bracken Bower prize are available at https://membership.ft.com/PR/brackenbower/