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NSW Premier’s Literary and History Awards winners announced

The winners of this year’s New South Wales Premier’s Literary and History Awards were announced on 30 November at the State Library of New South Wales.

In the Premier’s Literary Awards, Kim Scott won Book of the Year and the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction for That Deadman Dance (Picador), taking home a combined cash prize of $50,000. Scott, who won the 2011 Miles Franklin Literary Award for That Deadman Dance, as well as numerous other literary awards last year, beat this year’s Miles Franklin Literary Award winner Anna Funder (All That I Am, Penguin) to take out the fiction prize. A delay in this year’s award created the unusual situation of two Miles Franklin Literary Award winners competing for the same prize.

The winners in the other categories of the Premier’s Literary Awards are:

Douglas Stewart Prize for Nonfiction ($40,000)

  • An Eye for Eternity: The Life of Manning Clark (Mark McKenna, MUP)


Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry ($30,000)

  • New and Selected Poems (Gig Ryan, Giramondo)


Ethel Turner Prize for Young People’s Literature ($30,000)

  • Only Ever Always (Penni Russon, A&U)


Patricia Wrightson Prize for Children’s Literature ($30,000)

  • Crow Country (Kate Constable, A&U)


Community Relations Commission Award ($20,000)

  • Good Living Street: The Fortunes of My Viennese Family (Tim Bonyhady, A&U)


UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing ($5000)

  • The Roving Party (Rohan Wilson, A&U)


People’s Choice Award

  • Five Bells (Gail Jones, Vintage).


The winners of the book-related categories of the NSW Premier’s History Awards are:

Australian History Prize ($15,000)

  • Indifferent Inclusion: Aboriginal People and the Australian Nation (Russell McGregor, Aboriginal Studies Press)


General History Prize ($15,000)

  • Good Living Street: The Fortunes of My Viennese Family (Tim Bonyhady, A&U)


NSW Community and Regional History Prize ($15,000)

  • Set in Stone: A History of the Cell Block Theatre (Deborah Beck, UNSW Press)


Young People’s History Prize ($15,000)

  • Amazing Grace: An Adventure at Sea (Stephanie Owen Reeder, NLA).


To see a list of the titles shortlisted for this year’s awards, click here

This year’s judges also presented Clive James with a Special Award, worth $10,000, which is presented ‘under exceptional circumstances … either for an Australian literary work that is not readily covered by existing awards categories or in recognition of an Australian writer’s achievements generally’.

NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell described James as ‘a great Australian writer and a great son of Sydney’. ‘Clive James has had an extraordinary prolific and successful career [and] has pioneeded and championed the idea of an internationalised Australian culture through his poetry, novels, memoirs, works of literary criticism and scriptwriting,’ said O’Farrell.

As previously reported by Bookseller+Publisher, the State Library of NSW took over the management of the awards earlier this year, following a review of the awards announced at the end of 2011. In 2013 the NSW Premier’s Awards will return to the Sydney Writers’ Festival in May and the NSW Premier’s History Awards will be presented during History Week in September. For more information about the awards, visit the library’s website here.



Category: Local news