A.L. Kennedy – Alison Louise Kennedy – is a writer of serious, often dark, fiction who is also a stand-up comedian and, possibly linking the two, a columnist on Brexit for a German newspaper.

Kennedy, Scottish-born, started her working life as a community arts worker for Clydebank District Council and was so good at it that in 1990 she won a special Social Work Today award. As well as fiction, Kennedy writes plays, film-scripts, short stories and non-fiction (on the Powell and Pressburger film The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp and on bullfighting). She claims to think and write best in bed: ‘It’s warm, cosy, good for the back – it’s where only nice people are allowed to disturb you.’ And partly too because she is also an intermittent but regular insomniac. 

All nominated books

Serious Sweet