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2012 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards winners announced; ‘The Biggest Estate on Earth’ wins Victorian Prize for Literature

The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines Made Australia by Bill Gammage (A&U) has won the 2012 Victorian Prize for Literature, worth $100,000.
Gammage, who has spent the past 12 years working on the book, accepted the award from Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu at the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards dinner in Melbourne on 16 October, telling the attendees that winning the award is ‘life changing’. Gammage’s book also won the Nettie Palmer Prize for Nonfiction, worth $25,000.

The Biggest Estate on Earth has previously won the $80,000 Prime Minister’s Prize for Australian History and the history book award at this year’s Queensland Literary Awards. The book, which explores Aboriginal land management practices, also won the individual section of the 2011 Manning Clark House National Cultural Awards last year and was shortlisted for the General Nonfiction Book of the Year category in this year’s Australian Book Industry Awards.

The winning titles in the other categories are:

Vance Palmer Prize for Fiction ($25,000)

  • Foal’s Bread (Gillian Mears, A&U)


CJ Dennis Prize for Poetry ($25,000)

  • Armour (John Kinsella, Pan Macmillan)


Prize for Writing for Young Adults

  • The Shadow Girl (John Larkin, Woolshed Press)


Louis Esson Prize for Drama ($25,000)

  • A Golem Story (Lally Katz)


People’s Choice Award

  • National Interest (Aiden Fennessy).


As previously reported by Bookseller+Publisher, Anita Heiss won this year’s $20,000 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing for her memoir on identity Am I Black Enough for You? (Random House). Heiss received the award on Indigenous Literary Day on 5 September.

Graeme Simsion won the $15,000 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript in June for his novel The Rosie Project, which has since been acquired by Text Publishing.

To see all the titles shortlisted for this year’s Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards, click here. For more information about the awards, visit the Wheeler Centre website.



Category: Local news