October, 2013

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A twisty, cosmic tale crowns the youngest-ever Booker winner

, Oct 16, 2013

— This piece originally appeared as a Crikey news article. This morning, 28-year-old New Zealand author Eleanor Catton made history as the youngest author ever to win the Man Booker Prize, for her intricate tome The Luminaries. It’s been described by the judges as “a dazzling work, luminous, vast”. Catton is only the second Kiwi author to win […]
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Young NZ author wins spot on Man Booker shortlist

, Sep 11, 2013

— This piece originally appeared as a Crikey News article. The shortlist for the 45th annual Man Booker Prize for Fiction wasannounced last night in the UK, and young voices that span the globe have dominated. From a longlist described by the judges as “surely the most diverse in Man Booker history” comes a shortlist with authors from […]
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‘The most diverse in Man Booker history’: 2013 Man Booker Prize longlist announced

, Jul 24, 2013

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Something was announced last night in the UK that wasn't to do with the royal baby. The longlist for the 2013 Man Booker Prize for Fiction, which judges describe as the most diverse in the prize's history.
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The persistence of gender: a Stella Miles Franklin shortlist

, Apr 30, 2013

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There is no question that the debates around gender in literary awards have been important and resulted in real culture change. Yet I feel an uneasiness that it has reached the point where gender has become almost the primary concern in reportage.
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All-female 2013 Miles Franklin shortlist announced

, Apr 30, 2013

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Five novels make the 2013 Miles Franklin Literary Award shortlist, and they're all by female authors
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Notes from the Stella Prize

, Apr 17, 2013

The overwhelming experience of being at the awards was female writers and authors supporting one another, and the new national award they had created.
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Female dominated Miles Franklin longlist

, Mar 26, 2013

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This year the Miles Franklin longlist was released via a slow literary striptease from the Trust Company – revealing, one twitpic at a time, the covers of the ten novels. And what an interesting longlist it is. Not only decidedly free from the controversy that plagued it in 2009 and 2011 following all-male shortlists that saw […]
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All-fiction Stella Prize shortlist announced

, Mar 20, 2013

It’s an all-fiction shortlist for the inaugural Stella Prize, Australia’s first major new literary award for women’s writing that aims to “celebrate women’s contributions to Australian literature.” Six works make it to the list, down from a longlist of twelve. While all are fiction, there is a variety of genres — with a collection of short […]
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An Orange by another name: Women’s Prize for Fiction longlist announced

, Mar 13, 2013

The longlist for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, formerly known as the Orange Prize, was announced today in the UK. The prize is an international award for women’s writing in English, that aims to celebrate “the very best full length fiction written by women throughout the world.” Telecommunications company Orange, who worked in developing and […]
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The Stella Prize longlist announced

, Feb 21, 2013

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Fiction, debut writers and independent publishers are the emphasis in the longlist announced today for the inaugural Stella Prize, the first major new literary award for women’s writing. The Stella Prize is an exciting new fixture on the awards calendar and is the most high-profile example of what has been, in many ways, a culture […]
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Bad Sex Awards shortlist announced

, Nov 21, 2012

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If you were on twitter late last night, your feed may have been tantalisingly (and confusingly) peppered with such bon mots as:  ‘She smells of almonds, like a plump Bakewell pudding; and he is the spoon, the whipped cream, the helpless dollop of custard,’ or ‘His body impinged upon hers, and he was stroking her […]
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On a year of literary prizes

, Oct 25, 2012

It’s almost the end of the literary awards season, and the last few weeks have been eventful times for literary prizes. I attended the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards, the Melbourne lit scene in suits and cocktail dresses casting off its ‘bathrobe era’ attire (and found just how addicted we all are to our phones when I was […]
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Mo Yan wins Nobel Prize for Literature 2012

, Oct 12, 2012

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Last night Mo Yan – the author of Red Sorghum, Big Breasts & Wide Hips, and Life And Death Are Wearing Me Out – became the first Chinese national author to win the Nobel Prize for literature in its 111 year history. The Swedish Academy awarded Yan the world’s most prestigious literary honour for his […]
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A talisman of luck and love: Gillian Mears’ Foal’s Bread

, Sep 18, 2012

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This review is cross-posted from the Wheeler Centre’s Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards series.  It is a talisman of luck, and love. Foal’s bread – both the object and the novel – is a strange, rare and mesmerising thing. ‘Just every now and then,’ he explained, ‘a foal is born with something that looks like a little slice of […]
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Man Booker 2012 shortlist announced

, Sep 12, 2012

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The shortlist for the 44th annual Man Booker Prize was announced last night in the UK and it’s a list that supports ‘new guard’ novelists and independent publishers. The announcement of the longlist in July surprised many in its omission of new releases by some of the biggest names in contemporary fiction such as Peter […]
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Advancing the ‘new guard’: 2012 Man Booker Prize longlist announced

, Jul 26, 2012

The longlist for the 44th annual Man Booker Prize was announced last night in the UK. The prize ‘aims to promote the finest in fiction by rewarding the best novel of the year written by a citizen of the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth or the Republic of Ireland,’ with the overall winner receiving a £50,000 […]
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2012 Prime Minister’s Literary Award winners announced

, Jul 23, 2012

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      The winners of the fifth annual Prime Minister’s Literary Awards were announced today at the National Library of Australia. The awards, which ‘celebrate the contribution of Australian literature and history to the nation’s cultural and intellectual life,’ are the richest in Australia, with $80,000 going to the winner in each category, as well as $5,000 to […]
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‘To whittle down all that I am and give it a value’: Anna Funder and the Miles Franklin decision

, Jun 21, 2012

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At the end of All That I Am the protagonist Ruth muses: ‘It is the hardest thing, to work out one’s weight and heft in the world, to whittle down all that I am and give it a value.’ This now seems remarkably apt for a work given a dazzling array of literary value. Anna […]

Liticism’s Miles Franklin Countdown: Favel Parrett’s Past The Shallows

, Jun 20, 2012

*Spoiler alert: this is not intended as a straight review and I do refer to key plot points in this analysis. It’s strange the way works read in succession can speak to each other, the way the mind finds connections in works never written to be compared. In Tony Birch’s Blood the protagonists see a matinee […]

Liticism’s Miles Franklin Countdown: Tony Birch’s Blood

, Jun 15, 2012

*Spoiler alert: this is not intended as a straight review and I do refer to key plot points in this analysis. In one of the most vividly memorable moments of the novel, our young protagonists Jesse and Rachel wander like giants among miniature versions of the Eiffel Tower, the Great Pyramids, Dutch windmills, and the Leaning […]