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London wins 2015 Patrick White Literary Award

Joan London has won the 2015 Patrick White Literary Award.

The annual award was established by Patrick White using the proceeds of his 1973 Nobel Prize for Literature, and is traditionally awarded to authors who ‘have made a significant but inadequately recognised contribution to Australian literature’. The award does not involve a submission process, with writers being ‘automatically eligible’.

London is the author of three collections of short stories and three novels, including her latest, The Golden Age (Vintage), for which she won the Kibble Literary Award and was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin. Her other novels are The Good Parents (Vintage, 2008) and Gilgamesh (Picador, 2001), and her short-story collections are New Dark Age (2004), Letter to Constantine (1993) and Sister Ships (1986), all published by Fremantle Press.

This year’s award was judged by David Carter, Debra Adelaide and Bernadette Brennan. The judges said London’s ‘quiet, poetic prose opens up worlds, both real and imagined, of travel, desire, loss and love’. ‘London’s nomadic characters travel through space and time affirming through their relationships and varied histories a global humanity.’

London said the award was ‘a writer’s prize to a fellow writer, and I feel very moved in accepting it’. ‘[White] knew also of the advantage of a secure living that enables writers to experiment, take risks, and give the necessary time and care to their work.’

London will be presented with the award at an event at Gleebooks in Sydney on 13 November.

More than $800,000 has been given to Australian writers since the Patrick White Literary Award was first presented in 1974. Recent winners include Robert Adamson (2011), Amanda Lohrey (2012), Louis Nowra (2013) and Brian Castro (2014).


Category: Local news