Join us on:

Prize judges

The judging panel for the 2024 SI Leeds Literary Prize is:


Nelle Andrew (head judge) is an agent at Rachel Mills Literary. She represents award winning and bestselling authors across a broad range of fiction and non fiction including Sara Collins, Elizabeth Day, Bryony Gordon and Heidi Perks. She has represented 8x R&J Book Club Picks and a Between the Cover Book Club Pick. Authors on her list have either won or been nominated for the Costa Debut Novel, the HWA Goldsboro Debut Award, the Women’s Fiction Prize and the Walter Scott among others. In 2021, she won Literary Agent of the Year at the British Book Awards and is an Honorary Member of the Royal Society of Literature as well as a trustee of the Royal Literary Fund. She has supported a number of prizes including the Lucy Cavendish Prize, Morley and Stylist Debut Novel.

Photo of Nelle Andrew

Nelle Andrew

My name is Latoyah Innerarity and I’m a freelance writer and teacher from south London.  I have an MA in Creative Writing and my debut novel, Sometimes the Sky is Blue, was the runner-up in the SI Leeds Literary Prize 2022.  I have published several early reading books that reflect the interest and experiences of inner city children, with the hope of inspiring their love of reading.  I live with my two children and am currently working on my second novel. 

Photo of Latoyah Innerarity

Latoyah Innerarity



Dr Kadija George Sesay, whose research is on Black British Publishers and Pan-Africanism. She is the Publications Manager for Inscribe/Peepal Tree, publisher of SABLE LitMag and editor of several anthologies. She has published poetry, short stories and essays in anthologies and a poetry collection, Irki (Peepal Tree, 2013). She is a co-founder of Mboka Festival in Gambia, founder of the International Black Speculative Writers Festival and founder of an app, ‘AfriPoeTree’. She has received awards and fellowships for her work in the creative arts, her research and has judged several prizes.  Watch Kadija talk about her work with the Prize since its inception in 2012, and the role it plays in supporting writers.

Kadija George

Kadija George Sesay

Jamaican/British Rosemarie Hudson grew up in London and it’s where she founded
her first independent publishing company BlackAmber in 1998. Its ethos was to
publish unheard voices in English and international languages, and in particular the
best writers and writings from Africa, Asia and the Caribbean. It’s an aim she has pursued
ever since. She published many authors to critical acclaim during this period
including Patricia Cumper; Alex Wheatle; Cauvery Madhavan; Rachel Manley;
Yvonne Brewster and Gaston-Paul Effa, before her company was bought out.  Often called a ‘trailblazer’, Rosemarie is a keen and experienced mentor, serving on
the board of the Book Trade Charity (BTBS) for six years and mentoring on the Arts
Council project, Decibel. In 2010 Rosemarie founded HopeRoad, the indie publisher
which loves to share untold stories around identity, cultural stereotyping and
injustice, and specialises in encouraging new talent and promoting the best literary
voices from and about Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.  HopeRoad’s authors include:
Tahar Ben Jelloun; Kamala Markandaya: Cauvery Madhavan; Pete Kalu; Ferdinand
Dennis; Yan Ge, Max Lobe; Véronique Tadjo, Igiaba Scego, John Agard  and Tony
Fairweather to name a few. Rosemarie is also a board member of Inpress Books.
She is excited about the future for HopeRoad and very much looking forward to
celebrating its forthcoming 15th anniversary.

Rosemarie Hudson