The Galley Beggar Press
Short Story Prize 2019/20
ARIFA AKBAR is theatre critic for The Guardian and arts editor at Tortoise Media. She is the former literary editor of The Independent, where she worked from 2001 to 2016 as a news reporter and arts correspondent before joining the books desk. She has been the Head of Content for the crowd-funding publisher, Unbound, where she launched and edited the long-form literary website, Boundless, in 2017. She has contributed to the Observer, the Financial Times, the Daily Mail and appeared on Sky News as a newspaper reviewer. She is now a regular voice on BBC Radio 4's Front Row. She is also a trustee of the Orwell Foundation and co-administrators the annual Orwell Prize for Political Writing. She has previously served on the advisory board for English PEN's writers in translation committee and in the advisory group for the Cheltenham Literature Festival. She has moderated panels at literary festivals across the UK and judged prizes including the Orwell Prize for Books 2013, Costa Biography Award 2017, the Aesthetica Short Story Prize 2015 and 2016, the UK Theatre Awards 2018 and 2019, and the Women's Prize for Fiction 2019.
This year, Arifa is one of three renowned critics and writers joining Galley Beggar Press to judge our 2019/20 Short Story Prize.