Winners of the 2018 Queensland Literary Awards announced

Real life events explored through both non-fiction and fiction have been revealed as winners at tonight’s 2018 Queensland Literary Awards ceremony at State Library of Queensland.

Jackie Ryan’s We'll Show the World: Expo 88 received the $25,000 prize for the Queensland Premier’s Award for a work of State Significance, with the judges praising the Brisbane writer’s meticulous and amusing account of the major event that forever shifted perceptions of the sunshine state.

The Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Awards ($12,500 packages) were presented to Brisbane-based poet Anna Jacobson and author Bri Lee. Bri’s debut work Eggshell Skull, was noted as an important book by the judges, not only for the strength of the writing, but the conversations it has since sparked about sexism within the justice system.

Taboo, by Western Australian writer and descendant of the Noongar people, Kim Scott received The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award, while Tracker by Alexis Wright from northern Australia’s Waanyi country was awarded The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award ($15,000 each). Both books keep pivotal places and people alive in the minds of contemporary Australians.

The 2018 awards ceremony acknowledged the 30th anniversary of the Unpublished Indigenous Writer – David Unaipon Award, with The Making of Ruby Champion by Kirstie Parker announced as this year’s $15,000 winning manuscript.

Kirstie is a Yuwallarai woman from north-western NSW, with a distinguished career as a journalist, communicator and advocate. She now joins a host of exceptional writers as a recipient of this award, with alumni including Doris Pilkington Garimara AM, Ruth Hegarty and Larissa Behrendt.

The Queensland Literary Awards, managed by State Library of Queensland, honour outstanding books by Australian authors and champion new writing from young and emerging Queensland writers. Prizes are awarded across 14 categories in fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and published and unpublished works.

Quotes from Minister for the Arts, Leeanne Enoch:

“The Queensland Government supports the Queensland Literary Awards to share our stories, recognise exceptional talent and nurture the next generation of writers.”

“This Government’s ongoing commitment to match sponsorship and philanthrophic support for the Queensland Literary Awards helps to ensure the program’s future growth.”

“I congratulate all of this year’s accomplished authors, and look forward to reading the winning books.”

Quotes from State Librarian and CEO, Vicki McDonald:

“Through our collections, State Library is the trusted keeper of Queensland’s memories and it is wonderful to see such a definitive account of one of this state’s most crucial contemporary events recognised as the Queensland Premier’s Award for a work of State Significance this year.”

“Inspiring possibilities through knowledge, stories and creativity is at the heart of everything we do at State Library and I congratulate all of this year’s Queensland Literary Award winners and finalists.”

“We are also grateful for the role our key partners play in these awards, including the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, The University of Queensland, Griffith University, University of Southern Queensland, QUT, Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, The Courier-Mail and Jenny Summerson.”

The full list of 2018 winners follows.  For more information: qldliteraryawards.org.au.

2018 Queensland Literary Awards winners

Queensland Premier's Award for a work of State SignificanceAwarded to an outstanding work, by an Australian writer, focused on documenting, discussing or highlighting a uniquely Queensland story.

Prize: $25,000

  • We'll Show the World: Expo 88 (UQP) by Jackie Ryan

Queensland Premier's Young Publishers and Writers AwardsAwarded to two (2) outstanding Queensland writers up to 30 years of age.
Prize: two awards of $10,000 plus career development support to the value of $2,500 each

  • Anna Jacobson
  • Bri Lee

The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award
Awarded to an outstanding work of fiction by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • Taboo (Pan Macmillan) by Kim Scott

The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award
Awarded to an outstanding work of non-fiction by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • Tracker (Giramondo Publishing) by Alexis Wright

Griffith University Children’s Book Award
Awarded to a work, suitable for children up to 12 years old, by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • The Elephant (UQP) by Peter Carnavas

Griffith University Young Adult Book Award
Awarded to a work, suitable for young adults aged 13 to 19, by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • In the Dark Spaces (Hardie Grant Egmont) by Cally Black

University of Southern Queensland History Book Award

Awarded to an outstanding non-fiction history book by an Australian writer.

Prize: $10,000

  • We'll Show the World: Expo 88 (UQP) by Jackie Ryan

University of Southern Queensland Short Story Collection – Steele Rudd Award
Awarded to an outstanding collection of short stories by an Australian writer.
Prize: $10,000

  • Pulse Points (Text Publishing) by Jennifer Down

QUT Digital Literature Award

Awarded to an exceptional work of transmedia or digital literature showcasing innovation in storytelling.

Prize: $15,000

  • Little Emperor Syndrome by David Thomas Henry Wright, with Chris Arnold

State Library of Queensland Poetry Collection – Judith Wright Calanthe Award
Awarded to an outstanding collection of poetry by an Australian writer.
Prize: $10,000

  • I Love Poetry (Giramondo Publishing) by Michael Farrell

2018 Queensland Literary Awards winners


Queensland Premier's Award for a work of State Significance
Awarded to an outstanding work, by an Australian writer, focused on documenting, discussing or highlighting a uniquely Queensland story.
Prize: $25,000

  • We'll Show the World: Expo 88 (UQP) by Jackie Ryan

Queensland Premier's Young Publishers and Writers Awards
Awarded to two (2) outstanding Queensland writers up to 30 years of age.
Prize: two awards of $10,000 plus career development support to the value of $2,500 each

  • Anna Jacobson
  • Bri Lee

The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award
Awarded to an outstanding work of fiction by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • Taboo (Pan Macmillan) by Kim Scott

The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award
Awarded to an outstanding work of non-fiction by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • Tracker (Giramondo Publishing) by Alexis Wright

Griffith University Children’s Book Award
Awarded to a work, suitable for children up to 12 years old, by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • The Elephant (UQP) by Peter Carnavas

Griffith University Young Adult Book Award
Awarded to a work, suitable for young adults aged 13 to 19, by an Australian writer.
Prize: $15,000

  • In the Dark Spaces (Hardie Grant Egmont) by Cally Black

University of Southern Queensland History Book Award
Awarded to an outstanding non-fiction history book by an Australian writer.
Prize: $10,000

  • We'll Show the World: Expo 88 (UQP) by Jackie Ryan

University of Southern Queensland Short Story Collection – Steele Rudd Award
Awarded to an outstanding collection of short stories by an Australian writer.
Prize: $10,000

  • Pulse Points (Text Publishing) by Jennifer Down

QUT Digital Literature AwardAwarded to an exceptional work of transmedia or digital literature showcasing innovation in storytelling.
Prize: $15,000

  • Little Emperor Syndrome by David Thomas Henry Wright, with Chris Arnold

State Library of Queensland Poetry Collection – Judith Wright Calanthe Award
Awarded to an outstanding collection of poetry by an Australian writer.
Prize: $10,000

  • I Love Poetry (Giramondo Publishing) by Michael Farrell

Unpublished Indigenous Writer – David Unaipon Award
Awarded for an outstanding manuscript by an unpublished Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander writer. This category is sponsored by the Copyright Agency Limited through the Cultural Fund and supported by The University of Queensland Press.
Prize: $15,000 and publication with UQP.

  • The Making of Ruby Champion by Kirstie Parker

Glendower Award for an Emerging Queensland Writer
Awarded for an outstanding manuscript by an unpublished Queensland writer. This category is sponsored by Jenny Summerson and supported by the University of Queensland Press.
Prize: $15,000 and publication with UQP

  • Garrison Town by Melanie Myers

2018 Queensland Writers Fellowships


Awarded to three (3) established Queensland authors to advance a writing project over a 12 month period. The Queensland Writers Fellowships are sponsored by Arts Queensland and State Library of Queensland and supported by Queensland Writers Centre.
Prize: three Fellowships of $15,000 each

  • Michael Gerard Bauer, Gaps and Silences      
  • Laura Elvery, Medallion
  • Jackie Ryan, Alfred Russel Wallace: Optimist and Dissenter

The Courier-Mail People's Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award


Awarded to an outstanding book by a Queensland author. The winner of The Courier-Mail People's Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award is determined by public vote.
Prize: $10,000

Winner

  • Brisbane Houses with Gardens (Beth Wilson) by Beth Wilson

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