William Trevor


1928

24 May: Born William Trevor Cox in Mitchelstown, County Cork. His father was a bank officer, whose job required him to move frequently. WT's early education was sporadic.

1940

Attends boarding school in Dublin.

1942

Enters St. Columba’s College in Dublin. Studies sculpture under Oisin Kelly.

1946

Enrolls in Trinity College, Dublin.

1950

Is graduated from Trinity with a BA in History, attempts to earn a living as a sculptor.

1951

Marries Jane Ryan, whom he met at Trinity.

1952

Wins award for his sculpture. Emigrates to England.

1958

Has one-man show in Bath, but is souring on his sculpture. Turns to writing and publishes his first novel, A Standard of Behaviour, under the name of William Trevor.

1960

Begins work as a copywriter. Begins work on The Old Boys.

1965

The Old Boys wins the Hawthornden Prize for Literature. WT leaves advertising for full-time writing. Moves to Devon to write, in an old mill with 40 acres.

1970

Mrs. Eckdorf in O'Neill's Hotel is shortlisted for the Booker Prize.

1975

Royal Society of Literature Award for Angels at the Ritz and Other Stories. This collection is called by Graham Greene, "one of the finest collections, if not the best, since James Joyce's Dubliners."

1976

The Children of Dynmouth wins the Whitbread Award, the Allied Irish Banks Prize for fiction, the Heinemann Award for Fiction, and is shortlisted for the Booker Prize.

1977

WT made an honorary CBE for his contributions to literature.

1980

Giles Cooper Award for Beyond the Pale.

1982

Giles Cooper Award for Autumn Sunshine.

1983

Whitbread Prize for Fools of Fortune.

1991

Reading Turgenev is shortlisted for the Booker Prize.

1994

Whitbread Book of the Year award for Felicia's Journey.

1999

David Cohen Prize by the Arts Council of England in recognition of his work.

2001

Irish Literature Prize

2002

Irish PEN Award. The Story of Lucy Gault is shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the Whitbread Award, and wins the Listowel Prize for Irish literature. WT is knighted.

2003

Kerry Group Irish Fiction Award at the Listowel Writers' Week

2004

A Bit On the Side, a collection of short stories about adultery.

2007

Cheating at Canasta

2008

Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award in Irish Literature

2009

Love and Summer is shortlisted for the Booker Prize. The Collected Stories published.

2011

Love and Summer wins the International Dublin Literary Award.

2015

Made Saoi of Aosdána, the highest honour of the state-supported association of Irish artists

2016

20 November: Dies at home in Devon.



He's the greatest writer you never heard of. "In literary circles, which he avoided, his exquisitely crafted stories were mentioned in the same breath as Maupassant, Chekhov and Joyce. Had he cared about the critics, which he did not, he would have been flattered by the comparison: especially with Joyce, whose Dubliners had done much to set him on his path."