Hot off tonight’s twitter feed are this year’s winners of the Queensland Literary Awards. They combine specific state awards and awards for which all Australian writers are eligible.
Here is the whole suite of winners in the order they were announced:
- Queensland Premier’s Award for a work of State Significance: Jackie Ryan’s Expo 88
- Young Publishers and Writers Award: Bri Lee’s Eggshell skull and Anna Jacobson, whose debut poetry collection will be published by UQP in 2019.
- Queensland Writing Fellows: Michael Gerard Bauer, Laura Elvery and Jackie Ryan.
- State Library of Queensland Poetry Collection — Judith Wright Calanthe Award: Michael Farrell’s I love poetry (Giramondo), which, says the Twitter feed, the judges found to be “a truly inventive book”
- Glendower Award for an Emerging Queensland Writer: Melanie Myers for her manuscript Garrison Town. The judges, says Twitter, described it as “a polished, multi-layered narrative”.
- David Unaipon Award for an Unpublished Indigenous Writer: Kirstie Parker for her manuscript The making of Ruby Champion, which impressed the judges for the way it “seamlessly draws together the outback Aboriginal grassroots experience with the urban Black story”. The David Unaipon Award has brought us some wonderful writers in the past, of which, to date, I’ve reviewed four here.
- QUT Digital Literature Award: David Henry Thomas Wright & Chris Arnold’s Little Emperor syndrome. The judges noted its “elegantly simple execution of a wickedly complex narrative”.
- Griffith University Children’s Book Award: Peter Carnavas’ The elephant (UQP).
- Griffith University Young Adult Book Award: Cally Black’s In the dark spaces (Hardie Grant Egmont)
- University of Southern Queensland Short Story Collection-Steele Rudd Award: Jennifer Down’s Pulse points (Text Publishing), which the judges described as “a daring, compelling and refreshing collection”
- University of Southern Queensland History Book Award: Jackie Ryan’s Expo 88: We’ll show the world (UQP), which the judges praised for its “achievement in analysing the many dimensions of the Expo story…with such pacey economy is extraordinary”
- University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award: Alexis Wright’s Tracker (Giramondo) which the judges said “is stunningly innovative in the way it brings the life and story of Tracker Tilmouth to the printed page”
- University of Queensland Fiction Book Award: Kim Scott’s Taboo (Pan Macmillan) which the judges described as “a confronting but ultimately hopeful book that probes Australia’s heart of darkness in poetic and masterly prose.” (Still on my TBR but Lisa has read!)
- Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award: Beth Wilson’s Brisbane houses with gardens.
Some interesting awards and books here, but Jackie Ryan is clearly the winner of the night, having won the Award for a work of State Significance, the History Book Award, and a Writing Fellowship. I should say that publisher UQP shows her books full title as We’ll show the world: Expo 88 – Brisbane’s almighty struggle for a little bit of cred.
I particularly love that these Awards include one for Digital Literature (since 2017, I believe). It’s not surprising, though, given the work being done in keeping up with new writing and publishing technologies by the Queensland Writers Centre. You may remember that last year I reviewed the Writing black digital collection edited by Ellen van Neerven and supported by the Centre’s If:book arm.
Anyhow, as always, congratulations to all the winners. What a thrill it must be.