Mogford Prize


Apr 7, 2020

The German writer Laura Theis was the winner of the 2020 Mogford Prize for Food & Drink Writing with her short story ‘The Lift’. Laura’s entry was selected from 1,280 entries. The award-winning actor and writer Stephen Fry and the television presenter, cookery writer and novelist Prue Leith, CBE, joined prize founder, Jeremy Mogford, to judge the year’s entries.

The runners-up for the 2020 Mogford Prize came from diverse writing backgrounds: the Irish writer Fergal Greene, who works in Brussels, for ‘If it’s Good Enough for Swift it’s Good Enough for Me’; Mary McGrath, an Irish writer based in the UK, for ‘Sup’; and the Oxford writer Peter Adamson for ‘Boiled Egg with Rosie’.


Laura Theis is an award-winning musician and writer. She grew up in a place in Germany where each street bears the name of a mythical creature or fairy tale character. Her short stories, songs, radio plays, and poetry have been broadcast and/or published in the UK, Ireland, Belgium, Germany, Canada and the U.S.

Laura has gained a Distinction in the Mst Creative Writing at Oxford University (Keble College) as well as an MA in Theatre Studies, German and American Literature from LMU Munich.

She has won the 2020 Brian Dempsey Memorial Pamphlet Competition, the 2018 Hammond House International Literary Award for Poetry, the 2017 AM Heath Prize, and the 2018 Short Story Prize by Curtis Bausse.

In the last two years, her work has been shortlisted for the Yeovil Prize for Poetry, two Live Canon International Poetry Awards, the Blue Nib Chapbook Award, the Oxford Brookes Poetry Prize as well as the Frome Festival Short Story Competition. In 2020, she was a runner-up in the Mslexia Flash Fiction Competition.

More details about Laura can be found here on her website…


Gunner Tomlinson has a cunning plan to woo the woman of his dreams. He arranges for a lift to break down for an hour with the two of them trapped. He plans to produce culinary delights and champagne to share while they wait for rescue. All goes to plan until, at the last minute, a little old lady gets into the lift.