Zadie Smith’s expansion from author to playwright appears to have paid off after her Brent-inspired play earned her a theatre award.

The Wife of Willesden ran from November 2021 to January of this year at Kiln Theatre. Hailed as “a celebration of community and local legends,” the play was inspired by Smith’s upbringing and upon the writer learning Brent had been selected as London’s borough of culture for 2018 and 2020.

This week Smith, who is now said to divide her time between New York and north west London, was given the Bodley Medal, PEN/Audible Literary Service Award and Critics Circle Theatre Award for Most Promising Playwright 2022.

About her inspiration for The Wife of Willesden, she said: "I am a novelist. Curiosity about consciousness is my practice."

Previous recipients of the Bodley Medal include Peter Carey (2012), Hilary Mantel (2013), Nicholas Hytner (2014), Ian McEwan (2015), Professor Mary Beard (2016), William Boyd (2017), Claire Tomalin (2018) and Kazuo Ishiguro (2019).