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The Hope Prize

The Hope Prize, the Brotherhood of St Laurence’s national short story competition, is open for entries

The prize aims to explore resilience in the face of poverty and disadvantage, encouraging Australian writers to look beyond common stereotypes to investigate the strengths that people show in dealing with hardship, whose voices are rarely heard.

Short stories entered for The Hope Prize can be fiction or fact. Whatever the genre, the story submitted must convey the experience of people facing hardship in their lives.

The total prize pool is $17,500, and two Women’s Writing Career Development Scholarships — of $5,000 each — will also be awarded.

Authors must be Australian residents and entries must be between 2000 and 5000 words. The closing date for entries is January 31, 2018.

The Hope Prize was made possible by the generosity of the late Prudence Myer and the support of her family, as well as with the support of Simon & Schuster — which published the Hope anthology of the winning stories from the first competition — and Readings book retailer.

Judges

The eminent judges for the first competition are again judging The Hope Prize. They are former governor general Dame Quentin Bryce, actor Cate Blanchett, and author Kate Grenville.

Prizes

The prizes for the competition are:

First prize— $10,000

Second prize — $4,000

Third prize — $2,000

Highly commended stories — $250

Award for an emerging writer under 18 years — $500

Women’s Writing Career Development Scholarships

Two Women’s Writing Career Development Scholarships — of $5,000 each — will be awarded to recognise the many additional challenges women face in our community. The patron of the scholarship hopes that the scholarships will give two women a special opportunity to thrive.

Please see www.bsl.org.au/events/the-hope-prize for competition guidelines and entry form.

Email: shortstory@bsl.org.au

Cultural Musing – The South

The Department of English and Creative Writing, in collaboration with University Collections of the University of Adelaide present The South with Nobel Laureate, JM Coetzee; Australian novelist and academic, Gail Jones; and Miles Franklin awardee, Alexis Wright with Nicholas Jose, Professor of English and Creative Writing, the University of Adelaide and Bath Spa University, UK.

In a conversation with readings, four writers discuss their experience of writing in and from the South. What is the South as seen through Southern eyes? Can it be free of the weight of the Northern gaze?

For more information, visit the website

Lecturer in Creative Writing position at Southern Cross University

The School of Arts and Social Sciences at Southern Cross University is seeking to appoint a Level B academic to continue the development of programs in creative writing.

The School of Arts and Social Sciences is a large, multi-disciplinary School offering programs online and across the University’s Lismore, Coffs Harbour and Gold Coast campus locations. The School offers a range of awards in the areas of Humanities, Media, Contemporary Music, Arts and Design, and Social Sciences on-campus and flexible delivery modes, all of which include Honours programs.

Click here for more information on the position, or see the Pdf for more information

Creative Readings Night ‘What’s Lost, What Lingers?’

Wheatsheaf Hotel, 39 George Street, Thebarton – Wednesday 29 November 2017, 6:30pm

When you come to our conference in November, you will have the chance to attend the Creative Readings Night presented by The Hearth collective.

Catch the tram a couple of stops out of the city to Thebarton and then it’s a short stroll to the Wheaty on George Street (adventure map to guide you coming soon), for a creative readings night curated by a Flinders University creative writing collective: The Hearth.

Listen to readings on the theme of ‘What’s Lost, What Lingers?’ from your fellow conference delegates while you sip on a craft beer or whisky, the specialties of this beautiful old no-pokies pub that’s a favourite with the locals, or sample one of South Australia’s many delicious wines. Nibble on a cheese platter or some chips from the bar, get a tasty meal from a food truck out the front of the pub, or order in a wood oven pizza delivery from the menu behind the bar.

If you’ve been accepted for the creative stream of the conference, you are welcome to present at The Hearth instead of the daytime sessions – just let us know. Otherwise, if you would like to read your creative work, head over to the Call For Presenters and submit your proposal.

You can find more details here

Winner Announcement AAWP/ASSF Emerging Writers’ Prize

It is our very great pleasure to announce the winner of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs / Australian Short Story Festival Emerging Writers’ Prize. The winner is Ruth Armstrong for ‘Paper Cranes’. AAWP/ASSF are proud to support emerging writers in offering this opportunity for emerging writers.

AAWP/ASSF would like to thank all authors who submitted to the prize. The judges were overwhelmed by the quality and diversity of entries. This made the judging process inordinately challenging.

Judges’ appraisal:

In a field where we could quite easily have awarded half a dozen first prizes, Paper Cranes distinguishes itself from the remainder of the shortlist through its unwavering focus and effective scene changes, its characters who seem to walk straight out of real life and onto the page, its subtle and mostly unspoken conflicts, and its intelligent imagery. The story is well-paced and restrained when it needs to be, yet never sags; its dialogue rings true, yet avoids the banalities of everyday chitchat; it demonstrates an understanding of classic plot structure, yet remains lively and intriguing. In other words, it does its job. And in doing so, reminds us once again why short stories matter. Congratulations to the author.

About Ruth Armstrong:
Ruth is currently undertaking an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Technology, Sydney, with a focus on short story writing. ‘Paper Cranes’ was short listed for the 2017 Overland Neilma Sidney Short Story Prize. Ruth works as an editor at the health website, www.croakey.org.

Australasian Association of Writing Programs / Australian Short Story Festival Short Story Prize.

We regret to inform authors that there has been a slight delay in the announcement of a winner for the inaugural AAWP/ASSF Short Story Prize.

The judges are very impressed by the diverse entries, as well as the thoughtful and poised handling of voice and subject matter. The judges are working diligently on the short list and we will be in touch with an outcome very soon. We understand delays are not easy for authors and we are thank you for your patience.

Chapter One Winner Announcement!

Chapter One is the Australasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP) publication pathway for emerging writers. The prize is open to authors who have written a poetry collection, literary novel, short story collection, or a hybrid work that crosses genre boundaries. The AAWP is delighted to partner with University of Western Australia Press (UWAP) to provide this publication pathway for emerging writers. Thank you to all authors for diverse and polished contributions. Thank you to the judges for donating precious time to support emerging writers.

The winner of the ‘Chapter One’ prize is Joshua Kemp for Boneyard. Joshua receives a $500 cash prize and fully subsidised conference fees to attend the annual conference of the AAWP (November 2017), where he is invited to read from his work. The University of Western Australia Press agrees to assess Joshua’s manuscript as a matter of priority. This year the judges awarded a highly commended entry: Melanie Pryor for Girl, Swimming. The University of Western Australia Press is also happy to assess Melanie’s manuscript, as a matter of priority.

As the competition was tightly contested, we encourage submission in consecutive years.
From the judges:

Boneyard impresses immediately with a style that is both simple and pared back, yet distinctive, ‘tactile’ and very forceful. The vocabulary is spare, but very vivid, and works by a careful selection of very telling images, presented with an impressive brevity and vividness.
The writing offers a special kind of intimacy – a closeness and responsiveness to the sights, sounds and scenes of the novel, which seems at times almost onomatopoeic – and offers the perfect, inviting medium for the story, the characters and the core concerns to follow, as set out in the synopsis. The language itself offers the feeling that the writer is somehow ‘down here’, with the characters, with the kind of closeness and intimacy you can usually only achieve with a first person narrative. The writer trusts the characters to speak in their own voice, and to define themselves through dialogue. Authorial intrusion or commentary is minimal, throughout. ‘Semi-autobiographical’ – as indicated in the synopsis – is usually a recipe for literary disaster. We see no sign of it, in this case.

Girl, Swimming is fearless, imaginative, ‘transformative’ and unusual. This is a familiar world—but not one that is seen in a familiar way.

About the author of Boneyard:
Joshua Kemp is an author of Australian Gothic and crime fiction. His short stories have appeared in Overland, Seizure and Tincture. He’s been shortlisted for the S. D. Harvey Award and longlisted for the Margaret River Short Story Competition. He is currently doing his PhD at Edith Cowan University in Western Australia.

About the author of Girl, Swimming:
Melanie Pryor is a Creative Writing PhD candidate. Her research project, comprised of a travel memoir entitled Girl, Swimming and an accompanying critical exegesis, examines gender, walking, and landscape in contemporary memoir. Melanie teaches in Creative Writing and English Literature, and is a member of Flinders University’s Life Narrative Research Group.
Melanie is a Co-Founder of The Hearth, an Adelaide-based creative readings event. Her personal essays and literary fiction have been published in Overland, Southerly, and Lip, and her academic writing in a/b: Auto/Biography Studies.

Winner Announcement

AAWP/UWRF EMERGING WRITERS’ PRIZE 2017

It is our very great pleasure to announce the winner of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs / Ubud Writers and Readers Festival Emerging Writers’ Prize. The winner is Andrew Drummond for ‘Song of Shadows’.

AAWP/UWRF would like to thank all authors who submitted to the prize. The judges were overwhelmed by the nuanced responses to the theme and the quality and diversity of entries. We are proud to support emerging writers in offering this opportunity for emerging writers.

The prize manager would like to express gratitude to all authors: the announcement of the winner was delayed due to technical difficulties outside of our control. We understand that delays are difficult for authors and we appreciate your understanding and support.

The winning story will be published by Meniscus journal.

Judges’ appraisal:

‘Song of Shadows’ is a quietly graceful and perceptive text that straddles genres and cultures. It explores the fragility of our connection to where we have come from and to where we will eventually return, a theme encapsulated in the Hindu philosophy ‘Sangkan Paraning Dumadi’. A  lyric story interspersed with traditional verses, ‘Song of Shadows’ offers the spiritual assuagement its title promises and shows Andrew Drummond emerging as a major talent. Each section of ‘Song of Shadows’ attunes us to a different aspect of ‘origin’ and gestures to what strange connections might be revealed when we properly attend to the ambiguous and ambivalent connotations lurking behind the word in its plural form.

About Andrew Drummond:

I work in education and community mental health, and write as often as possible. I lived in Bali for a while when I was younger, and met many wonderful people. I have been fascinated by Balinese culture ever since. In particular, I am drawn to traditional dance and gamelan music. This fascination inspired my story.

Delayed Winner Announcement

Thank you to all writers who entered the AAWP/UWRF Emerging Writers Prize. The judges were overwhelmed by the quality of submissions. Due to technical difficulties, the announcement of the winner has been delayed. The winner will be announced on 8 September 2017. AAWP/UWRF sincerely apologise for the delay.