Friday, December 17, 2010

Book Review: Award Winning Australian Writing 2010

Award Winning Australian Writing 2010

Paperback 139mm × 210 mm


Disributed by Scribo

Following the successful launch of Award Winning Australian Writing 2008 and Award Winning Australian Writing 2009 at the Melbourne Writers’ Festivals of both years, Melbourne Books is pleased to announce the launch of Award Winning Australian Writing 2010.

This annual anthology is an exciting initiative that showcases the best short story and bush poetry competition winners from around the country. It represents the rare chance for emerging writers to have their work published in a nationally distributed book, and allows both prestigious and smaller-scale competitions to garner a wider readership and higher profile.

AWAW has been participated in by a myriad of Australian writers and competitions, each representing — and enriching — the country’s diverse literary landscape. AWAW is committed to showcasing the work of writers who have stamped their names on Australia’s writing community, as well as those who are enjoying the first flushes of success.

Now in its third edition, AWAW continues its role as a conduit for Australian literary talent. As a whole, this collection is a wonderful illustration of Australia’s communities and cultures, and offers an indication of what those communities like to read.

Praise for Award Winning Australian Writing

Award Winning Australian Writing provides readers with an opportunity for discovery — not just of great writing, but of tomorrow’s literary stars. And what a journey of discovery it is!

— Lisa Dempster Director, Emerging Writers' Festival


‘Read the collection. Here and there you will discover a gem, a passage or observation that will open up a new slant on things, a tiny moment of revelation. This is the reward of reading such a diverse collection.’

– Arnold Zable

‘Awards enable writers to be recognised and become a launch pad for many writers. It is anthologies such as Award Winning Australian Writing that keep those winners’ works alive.’

– Philip Rainford, FAW President 1999–2010

Peter Court - Glory Vine :Lyndall Hadow/Donald Stuart Short Story Competition, Ian McHugh - Once a Month, on a Sunday …: Aurealis Awards, Carmel Lillis - On the Third Day; Grenfell Henry Lawson Festival of the Arts Literary Competition, Sam Cooney - A Squeal, and Then a Squeak; Gum Leaves Short Story Competition, Max Merckenschlager - Musquito, the Black Bushranger; Rolf Boldrewood Literary Awards, Louise D’Arcy - Flat Daddy; The Age Short Story Competition, Gerard Thistleton – Seventeen; Smink Works Books Short Story Competition, Sharyn Munro - Live at The Bellevue; Marjorie Barnard Short Story Award, David Campbell - She Walks in Beauty; Laura Literary Awards, Carolyn Eldridge-Alfonzetti - The Romance-Writing Ringer of Roo Creek; New South Wales Open Bush Poetry Championship, Kathleen Epelde - Learning to Read; Northern Territory Literary Awards — Charles Darwin University Travel Short Story Award, Keren Heenan - The Drowned Town; Southern Cross Literary Competition , Gillian Essex - Collingwood Forever; Cut Short CAE Short Story Competition , Barry Lee Thompson - Randy; Lord Mayor’s Creative Writing Awards , Christine Fontana - Yellow; Alan Marshall Short Story Award , Arthur Green - The First ‘True Blue’ Australian Born; FreeXpresSion Literary Competition, Jacqueline Winn - Quirk and Peccadillo; Eastwood/Hills Regional Annual Literary Award Voula Adamopoulos, Breathe - Cancer Council of Victoria Arts Awards Short Story Competition, Alexis Hailstones - Winter’s End; Page Seventeen Short Story Competition, Amelia Schmidt - House-Sitting for My Mother; John Marsden Prize for Young Australian Writers, Ellis Campbell - The Arsonist; Blackened Billy Verse Competition, Kate Rotherham – HM; fourW twenty Booranga Prize for Best Short Story, Theresa Layton - The Other Side; Perilous Adventures Short Story Competition, Maryanne Khan – Basant; Marjorie Graber-McInnis Short Story Award, Marie Parkins - Crazy or Not?; Eastern Writers Group Biggest Little Short Story Competition, Zondrae King - Rain; Wool Wagon Awards, Joy Cooksey - Sweet William; Mona Brand Award, Eliza Murray - Lily; Uni Pub/ANU Short Story Prize, Mardi May - Nonna and the Flying Pig; Ellenbrook Short and Sweet Short Story Competition, Jason Fischer – Busking; Australian Horror Writers Association Short Story Competition, Max Merckenschlager - The Swagman; Bundaberg Arts Festival, Susan McCreery - Lost; Julie Lewis Biennial Literary Awards, Carmel Lillis - My People Shall Be Your People; Jennifer Burbidge Short Story Award, Kathryn Keeble - Aftermath; Boroondara Literary Awards, Renato Marocchini -Guilty, Northern Territory Literary Awards — Dymocks Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Writers Award, D.G. (Don) Adams - In Praise of the Shearing Shed; Bush Lantern Award for Written Verse, Cheryl Rogers - Cold War; Queen of Crime Awards, Alexia Champion - Goodnight, Goodnight; Wirra Wirra Vineyards Short Story Competition, Glenn Anderson - Moroney; ZineWest Short Story Competition, Sinead Roarty - The Charm; Shoalhaven Literary Award, Kathleen Noud - Bibi’s Tree; Katherine Susannah Prichard Short Fiction Award


Award Winning Australian Writing 2010 is a showcase of the finest short fiction across a broad spectrum and every genre within the Australian literary community. As the title suggests, the stories contained within this anthology are all winners of a writing competition and only the best for the year of 2010. Many of the names on the contents page will be familiar to readers of the main short story publications in Australia, some may be new to the reader, but all have earned their place in this year’s anthology. While some awards within the Australian Literary community hold little chance of a little known writer of winning, with only a select few people being eligible to be on the committee and the same judges attached to the award each year. Others have a more even playing field for all writers to achieve the coveted title of winning the award for the year. The variety of award winning competitions contained in this book allow dozens of writers the opportunity to be published in a reputable publication for the first time, increasing their exposure and opportunity to gain an agent or book deal. This annual publication is a great idea and a springboard to a fan following for new writers, regardless of the genre they specialise in. It is great to see so many award organisers collaborate and allow their winning entries to be published in this collection. What better way to promote fiction in a united front.

With forty one pieces of fiction to choose from, every reader will find at least a few stories that they will like and maybe even a new author that they will want to research and follow in future. I really enjoyed the wide variety of stories contained in this collection, with a good selection of genres to break up the usual monotony that tends to happen with other anthologies. The Aussie flavour with most of these stories really makes the book a treat to read as an Australian; themes and scenes that resonate with the lifestyle that only this great country offers. The reader may even discover a new genre that they had previously not tried as a new favourite.

I don’t want to single out the stories that were my favourite as I’d like to give each of the away winning authors an equal footing for readers to discover and enjoy. This book should be supported by anyone interested in literature in Australia as it is a brilliant collection of fantastic stories.

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