Damon Galgut's Booker Prize year: 'It's been like a literary festival that never ends'
From a global promotional tour to reconnecting with long-lost friends, the author of The Promise explains how winning the Booker Prize in 2021 changed his life
Damon Galgut has been shortlisted three times for the Booker Prize and won in 2021 for his ninth book, The Promise. He is a South African playwright and novelist, who wrote his first novel aged 17.
Galgut is a multi-award-winning author, and two films have been made of his book The Quarry. He grew up in Pretoria, where The Promise is set, and now lives in Cape Town. When asked why he became a writer, he reveals he had lymphoma as a child, during which time he ‘learned to associate books and stories with a certain kind of attention and comfort’. He is currently working on a collection of short stories.
The original idea came from a conversation with a friend, who’s the last surviving member of his family
The number of novels, including The Promise, written by Damon Galgut
Years between Arctic Summer, Damon Galgut’s previous novel, and The Promise
Damon Galgut’s age when his first novel was published
Number of times Damon Galgut has been shortlisted for the Booker (2003, 2010, 2021)
Winner The Booker Prize 2021