Weekly Book Newsletter
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4 December 2019

Christmas closing list 2019 x

We have collated company closing dates for the Christmas period below. Read the full article here.
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One more ‘WBN’ this year, last chance to submit job ads

Next week’s Weekly Book Newsletter on 11 December will be the last for 2019. If you would like to post a job ad or classified,... Read more


2020 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards shortlists announced

The shortlists for the 2019 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards have been announced. The shortlisted titles are: Fiction The House of Youssef (Yumna Kassab, Giramondo) Act... Read more
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Indie Book Awards 2020 longlists announced

Leading Edge Books has announced the longlists for the 2020 Indie Book Awards for books published in 2019. The longlisted titles in each category are:... Read more


SPN conference 2019: ‘Extremely positive’ feedback from delegates x

The Small Press Network’s (SPN) eighth Independent Publishing Conference was held at the Wheeler Centre in Melbourne on 21–23 November. SPN general manager Tim Coronel... Read more
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Hardie Grant staff lodge majority support determination with Fair Work

On behalf of staff in several departments of the publishing division at Hardie Grant Publishing, the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA) has filed a... Read more


Orr, Bradley among recipients of Copyright Agency fellowships worth $240k

The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund has awarded a total of $240,000 for three fellowships. Adelaide writer Stephen Orr was awarded the $80,000 author fellowship for... Read more


Former Macmillan Education staff launch new educational publisher

Former staff from Macmillan Education Australia’s school division have formed a new educational publishing company called Matilda Education. After Macmillan Education Australia announced in August... Read more

Writers Victoria announces latest Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund recipients

Writers Victoria has announced the fifth round of recipients for the Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund. Eleven successful writers, booksellers and publishers were selected from... Read more


Beasley wins inaugural OzCo Arts and Disability Award for an emerging artist

Tennant Creek-based artist and illustrator Dion Beasley was one of three winners at the Australia Council’s inaugural Arts and Disability Awards, presented at a ceremony... Read more


‘The Strays’ to be adapted into six-part drama series

Emily Bitto’s Stella Prize-winning novel The Strays (Affirm) will be adapted into a six-part drama series as a co-production of See Pictures and Apogee Pictures.... Read more


Marchetta’s ‘On the Jellicoe Road’ to be adapted for drama series

Melina Marchetta’s 2006 young adult novel On the Jellicoe Road (Penguin) is being adapted for a young adult drama series, reports Deadline. The project is... Read more


‘The Book Ninja’ optioned for film

Ali Berg and Michelle Kalus’ novel The Book Ninja (S&S) has been optioned for film by producers Chris Brown of Pictures in Paradise and Veronica... Read more


Sales wins 2019 Walkley Book Award

Journalist and author Leigh Sales has won the 2019 Walkley Book Award for Any Ordinary Day (Hamish Hamilton). Any Ordinary Day describes how tragedy and... Read more


Hardie Grant Travel acquires Steffensen’s book on Indigenous fire management

Hardie Grant Travel has acquired world rights to Fire Country, the memoir of Indigenous fire practitioner Victor Steffensen. Steffensen is a Tagalaka descendant from Far... Read more


UQP acquires two new nonfiction titles by Foley, Bond

The University of Queensland Press (UQP) has acquired world rights to two books by leading Indigenous scholars, visual artist Fiona Foley’s Biting the Clouds and... Read more


Hardie Grant Egmont acquires Alex Dyson’s debut YA novel

Hardie Grant Egmont has acquired world rights to the debut young adult novel by former triple j breakfast presenter Alex Dyson. When it Drops follows... Read more


Van Zweden wins 2019 KYD unpublished manuscript award

Literary journal Kill Your Darlings (KYD) has announced Sam van Zweden as the winner of its 2019 unpublished manuscript award for her manuscript ‘Eating with... Read more

Readings Foundation announces 2020 grant recipients

The Readings Foundation has chosen 12 Victorian organisations to share in $135,142 worth of grants in 2020. The grant recipients are: Banksia Gardens Community Service:... Read more


Thomson receives inaugural Varuna/New England Writers’ Centre Fellowship

Armidale writer Anna Thomson is the inaugural recipient of the Varuna/New England Writers’ Centre (NEWC) Fellowship. Thomson’s winning submission included an extract from her paranormal... Read more


Room on our Rock wins Charlotte Huck Award in US

In the US, Room on our Rock (Kate & Jol Temple, illus by Terri Rose Baynton, Scholastic) has won the NCTE Charlotte Huck Award for... Read more

NZ Review of Books Pukapuka Aotearoa to close

The New Zealand Review of Books Pukapuka Aotearoa will close next month, following Creative New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its funding to the publication. The... Read more

More than 380,000 UK children don't own a single book: National Literary Trust

In the UK, research from the National Literary Trust (NLT) has found more than 380,000 children don’t own a single book, reports the Bookseller. The... Read more


‘The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse’ named Waterstones book of the year, Thunberg named author of the year

In its annual awards, UK bookselling chain Waterstones has announced The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy (Ebury) as book... Read more


Costa Book Awards 2019 shortlists announced

In the UK, the shortlists for the 2019 Costa Book Awards have been announced. Shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award are: Middle England (Jonathan Coe,... Read more


Rights round-up x

Sales Fiction Text Publishing has sold Chinese-language rights to The Death of Noah Glass (Gail Jones) to Writers Publishing House; Czech-language rights to Bad Debts... Read more


Bestsellers: New James Patterson debuts at number six x

The 14th ‘Wimpy Kid’ book, Wrecking Ball (Jeff Kinney, Puffin) is spending its second consecutive week at number one the Australian bestseller chart, followed by the... Read more


Shark Arm: A shark, a tattooed arm and two unsolved murders (Phillip Roope & Kevin Meagher, A&U) x

Shark Arm is an offbeat true crime book that begins with a shark throwing up a man’s tattooed arm in front of onlookers at a... Read more

Marketing for small publishers x

‘We have to create demand for our books precisely because they are not stacked up at the front of the shop—on ‘the dick table’ as Clare Wright so memorably called it.’—Ventura Press publisher Jane Curry on how small publishers can remain competitive by creating buzz for their titles.



RiP Clive James

Broadcaster, critic and author Clive James has died, aged 80. James was born and raised in Sydney, but moved to the UK after graduating from university.... Read more


Publishers Weekly x

Books+Publishing is partnering with US trade news magazine Publishers Weekly to provide our subscribers with exclusive access to the weekly digital edition of PW magazine... Read more


To market, to market: Jane Curry on marketing x

Ventura Press publisher Jane Curry argues that despite the dominance of multinational publishers, there are still opportunities for small presses to flourish—and sell plenty of... Read more

Berbay opening up for chapter and junior fiction submissions

From 1 January to 30 April 2020, Berbay will be accepting chapter book and junior fiction submissions for readers between the ages of 6–12.

We’d like to see contemporary narratives, with or without a touch of whimsy, and stories that inspire the imagination. We’re interested in unique voices, unforgettable characters, and authors we can grow. Submissions from new and previously published Australian residents are welcome. (We are not accepting picture books, short stories, poetry, or young adult fiction.)

Authors can submit a cover letter and the first 50 pages of their novel to submissions@berbaybooks.com. They’ll receive an automatic email confirming receipt of their project, and if our editorial team is interested in seeing more of their work, we will contact them directly. We kindly ask that authors submit only one project during our open submission window.




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