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No Vogel Award to be presented in 2013

Allen & Unwin has announced that the judges of the Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award have decided not to present the award this year.

This is the second time in the award’s history that the judges have decided not to select a winning manuscript. The award was also not presented in 1985.

Judge and chief literary critic at the Australian Geordie Williamson said in a statement that the judges did not find ‘that special quality that a winning entry has’ among this year’s submissions. Williamson said, however, that the decision ‘should not be taken as some final judgement on the entries for 2013’. ‘Many we admired, many we thought had real promise, and many we returned to again and again, hoping that we had overlooked that special quality … [but] we didn’t find it; not this year,’ he said.

‘The most important factor underlying this decision is the integrity of the Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award, the most significant award in this country for younger Australian authors,’ said Williamson. ‘The judges agreed that it would damage the award if we picked a winner simply because a winner had to be picked: readers can sniff out a compromise in an instant, and we need them to trust that the prize will do what it has always done: find the best work written by emerging authors.’

Entries are now open for the 2014 award. Allen & Unwin publisher Annette Barlow said that ‘while it’s disappointing not to announce a winning novel, the judging panel is looking forward to reading many interesting and exciting entries in this year’s award cycle’.

The Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award, which is presented for an unpublished manuscript by a writer under 35 years of age, is worth $20,000 and includes publication by Allen & Unwin. Recent winners include Paul D Carter for Eleven Seasons (2012) and Rohan Wilson for The Roving Party (2011).

For more information about the award, visit the Allen & Unwin website here.  

 

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