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‘The Bush’ wins Book of the Year at NSW Premier’s Literary Awards

Don Watson’s The Bush (Hamish Hamilton) has been named Book of the Year at the 2015 New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards, presented in Sydney on 18 May.

Watson’s book also won the Douglas Stewart Prize for Nonfiction, and was described by the judges as ‘a grand work, as multifarious as the bush itself’. ‘Impeccably written, The Bush illuminates a kaleidoscopic subject central to our idea of ourselves.’

The full list of winners is:

Book of the Year ($10,000)

The Bush (Don Watson, Hamish Hamilton)

Christina Stead Prize for Fiction ($40,000)

The Snow Kimono (Mark Henshaw, Text)

UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing ($5000)

An Elegant Young Man (Luke Carman, Giramondo)

Douglas Stewart Prize for Nonfiction ($40,000)

The Bush (Don Watson, Hamish Hamilton)

Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry ($30,000)

Earth Hour (David Malouf, UQP)

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

Figgy in the World (Tamsin Janu, Omnibus)

Crossing (Catherine Norton, Omnibus)

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

The Cracks in the Kingdom (Jaclyn Moriarty, Pan Macmillan)

Betty Roland Prize for Scriptwriting ($30,000)

The Babadook (Jennifer Kent, Causeway)

Nick Enright Prize for Playwriting ($30,000)

Black Diggers (Tom Wright, Playlab/Queensland Theatre Company)

The NSW Premier’s Prize for Translation ($30,000)

Brian Nelson

Multicultural NSW Early Career Translator Prize ($5000)

Lilit Zekulin Thwaites

2015 Multicultural NSW Award (formerly the Community Relations Commission for a Multicultural NSW) ($20,000)

Black and Proud: The Story of an AFL Photo (Matthew Klugman & Gary Osmond, NewSouth).

Playwright and dramatist David Williamson was presented with a Special Award, worth $10,000, which is given ‘for an Australian literary work that is not readily covered by existing awards categories or in recognition of an Australian writer’s achievements generally’.

The judges described Williamson as ‘an ideal choice to receive the Special Award’. ‘Whether for theatre, film or television, Williamson’s work is marked by its Australianness, intelligence, wit and engagement with social issues.’

Williamson has written screenplays for a number of Australian films, including Gallipoli, The Year of Living Dangerously, Brilliant Lies and Balibo. His plays include Don’s PartyRupert, Emerald City and the ‘Jack Manning’ trilogy: Face to Face; A Conversation; Charitable Intent. He has been awarded five Australian Film Institute Awards, 12 Australian Writers Guild AWGIE Awards and an Order of Australia.

This year’s Peoples’ Choice winner will be chosen from the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction shortlist by NSW residents in an online vote. Voting closes at midnight on 21 May.

To see the books shortlisted for this year’s awards, click here.

 

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