‘The Elasticity of Bone’ by DW Wilson

In 2010 the Booker Foundation inaugurated a scholarship at UEA that remains the most generous we have to offer. The recipient is chosen by the tutors on the strength of the writing in their MA application portfolio, and Dave (DW) Wilson was our unanimous choice for the first award – largely on the strength of this story. Born in Canada, a graduate of the University of Victoria, he was then in his early 20s, and already appeared to have found his voice and his themes. Dave writes to a particular cadence, his sentences beautifully weighted. He registers the shifting weather of moods, and the eloquence of the small gesture. Above all he finds the soft spots in the armour of blue-collar masculinity. His stories reek of maleness, and sadness, and here in ‘The Elasticity of Bone’ he finds a way of speaking about the love of a father and son through the medium of judo. They fight, and it means the opposite of fighting. Soon after graduation this became the opening story in his debut collection.

In Once You Break A Knuckle, Hamish Hamilton, 2011