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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    JOINT STATEMENT
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
    Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy and Minister for Small Business
    The Honourable Leeanne Enoch

    Outstanding writers recognised as finalists in literary awards

    JOINT STATEMENT

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy and Minister for Small Business
    The Honourable Leeanne Enoch

    Tuesday, September 05, 2017

    Outstanding writers recognised as finalists in literary awards

    The Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to supporting the arts and literary excellence is again on display, with the announcement of the 2017 Queensland Literary Awards finalists.

    Premier and Minister for the Arts Annastacia Palaszczuk said these awards highlighted the diversity and excellence of literature from Queensland and across Australia.

    “My Government recognises the importance of literature and supports our state’s budding writers, as well as recognising the achievements of established authors,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

    “The Queensland Literary Awards celebrate our great writers, with award categories ranging across fiction, non-fiction, poetry, published and unpublished works.

    “These awards can also open up career pathways and exciting opportunities for emerging writers, as demonstrated by 2016 winner Michelle Law who recently had Homecoming Queens commissioned by SBS On Demand.”

    Ms Palaszczuk said the Queensland Literary Awards had the strong support of the Queensland community.

    “My Government understands Queensland is an arts leader, unlike the former Newman-Nicholls LNP Government who scrapped public funding for these awards as one of the first of many cuts,” she said.

    “The former LNP Government’s decision to axe funding was rightfully condemned not only by Queensland’s literary community, but across the country.

    “My Government reinstated these prestigious awards in 2015 and I’m delighted to have the opportunity to recognise this year’s finalists.”

    Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch said the awards were presented by the State Library of Queensland (SLQ).

    “The Queensland Literary Awards provide a crucial opportunity to acknowledge the significance of storytelling from local voices, while also showcasing the strength of Australia’s contemporary writing talent, both in print and online,” Ms Enoch said.

    “The introduction this year of the QUT Digital Literature Award recognises the ongoing expansion of writing and publishing in the digital space, and is a significant addition to these awards.”

    Ms Enoch acknowledged the support of Queensland Literary Awards partners - The University of Queensland, Griffith University, University of Southern Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund and The Courier-Mail.

    She said the Palaszczuk Government continues to match sponsor and partnership funding across all award categories, and in partnership with SLQ supports three Queensland Writers Fellowships of $15,000 to provide authors with an opportunity to develop their manuscripts and writing projects.

    State Librarian and CEO Vicki McDonald said celebrating some of the best examples of locally-developed literature through events such as the QLAs is central to SLQ’s commitment to nurturing a culture of reading, writing and ideas.

    “This year’s shortlist includes important accounts of real-life events that have shaped Queensland communities and individuals, as well as extraordinary works of creativity and imagination” Ms McDonald said.

    “Nominees include last year’s winner of The Courier-Mail People’s Choice category, Mary-Rose Maccoll, a writer who has previously been celebrated for fictional works, but in 2017 has received three nominations for her deeply personal non-fiction title, For a Girl.”

    The award winners and fellowship recipients will be announced at a special ceremony to be held at SLQ on Wednesday 4 October.

    All nominations for the Queensland Literary Awards are assessed by category panels of independent judges, made up of authors, critics, publishing industry professionals, academics, educators, arts organisation representatives and booksellers.

    The 2017 Queensland Literary Awards categories are:

    • Queensland Premier’s Award for a Work of State Significance
    • Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Awards
    • The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award
    • The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award
    • Griffith University Young Adult Book Award
    • Griffith University Children’s Book Award
    • University of Southern Queensland History Book Award
    • University of Southern Queensland Australian Short Story Collection — Steele Rudd Award
    • State Library of Queensland Poetry Collection — Judith Wright Calanthe Award
    • QUT Digital Literature Award (new category in 2017)
    • Unpublished Indigenous Writer — David Unaipon Award (supported by The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund and the University of Queensland Press)
    • Emerging Queensland Writer — Manuscript Award (supported by the University of Queensland Press)
    • The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award

    The winner of The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award is determined by public votes, with online voting continuing until Monday 25 September via qldliteraryawards.org.au

    2017 Queensland Literary Awards shortlist

    Queensland Premier’s Award for a Work of State Significance ($25,000)

    • Little Fish Are Sweet by Matthew Condon (UQP)    
    • For a Girl by Mary-Rose MacColl (Allen & Unwin)
    • Saltwater by Cathy McLennan (UQP)
    • The Daintree Blockade: The Battle for Australia's Tropical Rainforests by Bill Wilkie (Four Mile Books)

     Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Awards (two available, $10,000*each)

    • Lech Blaine
    • Mindy Gill
    • Anna Jacobson
    • Emily O'Grady
    • Bonnie Stevens

    * Winners of this award also receive $2,500 worth of professional development

     The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award ($10,000)

    • The Birdman's Wife by Melissa Ashley (Affirm Press)
    • Vancouver by Nick Earls (Inkerman & Blunt)
    • A Hundred Small Lessons by Ashley Hay (Allen & Unwin)
    • The Good People by Hannah Kent (Pan Macmillan)
    • The Museum of Modern Love by Heather Rose (Allen & Unwin)

     

    The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award ($10,000)

    • Songs of a War Boy by Deng Adut and Ben Mckelvey (Hachette)
    • Ghost Empire by Richard Fidler (HarperCollins)
    • For a Girl by Mary-Rose MacColl (Allen & Unwin)
    • Position Doubtful by Kim Mahood (Scribe)
    • Saltwater by Cathy McLennan (UQP)

     

    Griffith University Young Adult Book Award ($10,000)

    • The Hounded by Simon Butters (Wakefield Press)
    • Words In Deep Blue by Cath Crowley (Pan Macmillan)
    • The Bone Sparrow by Zana Fraillon (Hachette)
    • The Road to Winter by Mark Smith (Text Publishing)
    • This is My Song by Richard Yaxley (Scholastic)

     

    Griffith University Children’s Book Award ($10,000)

    • Somewhere Else by Gus Gordon (Penguin Random House)
    • A Different Dog by Paul Jennings (Allen & Unwin)
    • How to Bee by Bren MacDibble (Allen & Unwin)
    • Dragonfly Song by Wendy Orr (Allen & Unwin)
    • The Grand, Genius Summer of Henry Hoobler by Lisa Shanahan (Allen & Unwin)

     

    University of Southern Queensland History Book Award ($10,000)

    • The Tim Carmody Affair: Australia's Greatest Judicial Crisis by Rebecca Ananian-Welsh, Gabrielle Appleby, Andrew Lynch (NewSouth)
    • Hidden in Plain View: The Aboriginal people of coastal Sydney by Paul Irish (NewSouth)
    • Evatt: A life by John Murphy (NewSouth)
    • Into the Heart of Tasmania by Rebe Taylor (MUP)

     

    University of Southern Queensland Australian Short Story Collection — Steele Rudd Award ($10,000)

    • Letter to Pessoa by Michelle Cahill (Giramondo)
    • The Circle and the Equator by Kyra Giorgi (UWA Publishing)
    • After the Carnage by Tara June Winch (UPQ)

     

    State Library of Queensland Poetry Collection — Judith Wright Calanthe Award ($10,000)

    • Euclid's Dog by Jordie Albiston (GloriaSMH Press)
    • Meteorites by Carmen Leigh Keates (Whitmore Press)
    • Fragments by Antigone Kefala (Giramondo)
    • The Blue Decodes by Cassie Lewis (Grand Parade Poets)
    • These Wild Houses by Omar Sakr (Cordite Books)

      

    QUT Digital Literature Award ($10,000)

    • Inanimate Alice: Perpetual Nomads (Beta) by Mez Breeze
    • Generation Loss by Pascalle Burton
    • Nine Billion Branches by Jason Nelson
    • Paige and Powe by David Thomas Henry Wright
    • Limerence by Marianna Shek

     

    Unpublished Indigenous Writer — David Unaipon Award (supported by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund and Univerity of Queensland Press) ($10,000)

    • Mai Stori by Alicia Farmer
    • Mirrored Pieces by Lisa Fuller

     

    Emerging Queensland Writer — Manuscript Award (supported by the University of Queensland Press) ($10,000*)

    • How to Knit a Human by Anna Jacobson
    • The Killing of Louisa by Janet Lee
    • The Fox by Ben Marshall
    • The Coming by Siall Waterbright

     

    The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award ($10,000)

    • The Birdman's Wife by Melissa Ashley (Affirm Press)
    • Vancouver by Nick Earls (Inkerman & Blunt)
    • Ghost Empire by Richard Fidler (HarperCollins)
    • A Hundred Small Lessons by Ashley Hay (Allen & Unwin)
    • Barbed Wire and Cherry Blossoms by Anita Heiss (Simon & Schuster)
    • To Prey and To Silence by Joan Isaacs (A and A Publishing)
    • For a Girl by Mary-Rose MacColl (Allen & Unwin)
    • Saltwater by Cathy McLennan (UQP)


    For more information on the Queensland Literary Awards and the nominee shortlist visit www.qldliteraryawards.org.au

     

    ENDS

    Media contact: 0412 393 909