Australian Women Writers 2020 Challenge completed

I’m very late with my traditional completion post for the Australian Women Writer’s Challenge – it’s been a weird and difficult year all round. As always, I will continue to contribute until the year’s end, and do a final round-up then, but I do like to get the completion admin done!

I signed up, of course, for the top-level, Franklin, which involves reading 10 books and reviewing at least 6, and of course I’ve exceeded this. In fact, by June 30, my usual marker for my completion post, I’d contributed 13 reviews to the challenge,

Here’s my list in alphabetical order (by author), with the links on the titles being to my reviews:

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Challenge logo

I don’t set myself specific reading goals, but I do keep in mind a wish to read more indigenous and diverse writers, more classics, and more from my TBR pile. As I wrote last year, these continue to be my non-goal goals. So, how did I go? Well, I read just one Indigenous Australian writer, an Iranian Australian writer, two classics (thanks to Bill’s AWW Gen 3 week), and four (Hooper, Park, Thirkell and Azar) from my TBR*. This is not too bad out of 13 books (I think!), particularly given this weird year. However, I’d like to do more. Let’s see how I go by the end of the year.

Book coverNot included in the above list is Heidi Sze’s book Nurturing your new life, which I have not specifically reviewed. However, I have read a significant proportion of it, and did write up the author event I attended.

Watch out for my 2020 AWW Challenge wrap-up post for the year’s full story!

* All books I read are, by definition, on my TBR, but in terms of my book management, I define my TBR pile as those I’ve had for more than 12 months!

30 thoughts on “Australian Women Writers 2020 Challenge completed

  1. Congratulations, Sue! I will save some of your book titles and hope 2021 will be a better reading year for me. Due to Covid….my focus just disappeared. I failed to complete this challenge…only read 5 books by Australian writers. In 2019 I read 70 books…so you can see the impact 2020 has had on me. See you in 2021 Aus Reading Challenge!

  2. I’m not sure how many I’ve read so far, though I have read two Jess White’s so there’s a start, and Gen 3 Week parts one and two should bump me up a bit further. I’ll add them up at the end of the year. I’ve read 3 off your list, so I have some catching up to do. Tonight was unexpectedly free, I looked at Thirkell, I looked at Jolley, but I plumped for a European guy (not that I’ve got off the computer to start reading yet).

  3. Well done, Sue, you’ve had a tough year and you’ve still managed to read more than many people ever do.
    I hope some of those books brought you solace when you needed it.
    I don’t do this (or any other) challenge, but I’ve done my bit with reviewing Australian women writers, not least with Thea Astley Week who accounted for five of them all by herself!

  4. Well done Sue. It has been a strange reading year, and a particularly difficult one for you.

    I’ve read six from your list – loved both the Wood and the Parrett, purely because I just became completely absorbed by the characters. I’ve recommended the Hooper to many people who don’t consider themselves ‘big readers’, and all have loved it. And the Winch – I’m still thinking about the dictionary elements of the book, and how brilliantly they added to the story.

  5. Amazing! I don’t know how you do it. I’ve read several of them, but my wider reading is always slowed by my essential reading around research for the manuscript I’m presently working on. My TBR pile grows by the day so I’ve added a few more from this great list!

      • Yes Sue, the research reading is fabulous, but I also find that the more time I take off for other reading, (fiction/non-fiction) the better and more easily my own writing flows. Every single book has something to reflect on, to either emulate or avoid or try out. Or offers solace or escape. I’m still getting through a novel a week in unrelated stuff! This week’s read was a prize-winner, not Australian, (& shall remain nameless) and I found it disappointing: overblown and wordy and forced. But even when that happens it forces you as a reader & a writer, to ask yourself how that happened and what worked & what didn’t. Reading just is, for me, like breathing. Or like eating, and there sure has been a lot of both during this weird time!!!! I hope reading has also brought solace for you and so many people who have suffered during this past winter.

        • Thanks Jan. That’s good to hear. I feel about reading the way you do though with my mother’s somewhat sudden death in June I did find it hard to focus for a while. Sometimes even reading doesn’t cut it. But I’m coming back.

  6. Wow I’m really impressed by the video (slide show?) that introduces your list. Did you make it yourself? How’d you do it, WG? Again, thanks for introducing me to more Australian women writers. BTW, I’ve just read a woman writer too, with multiple ‘nationalities’, nature writing mixed with memoir, about a place close to your country. 🙂

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