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2021 Queensland Literary Awards Winners and Finalists

Congratulations to the 2021 Queensland Literary Awards winners and finalists!

Queensland Premier's Award for a work of State Significance

$25,000 | Supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland

Biting the Clouds
by Fiona Foley
University of Queensland Press

Car Crash by Lech Blaine (Black Inc.)
Ordinary Matter by Laura Elvery (University of Queensland Press)
A Question of Colour by Pattie Lees with Adam C Lees (Magabala)
Change Machine by Jaya Savige (University of Queensland Press)


Biting the Clouds by Fiona Foley (University of Queensland Press)

Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Award

$12,500 each (two awards) | Supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland

Allanah Hunt and Ellen Wengert

Rebecca Cheers
Jonathan O'Brien


Allanah Hunt, author
Ellen Wengert, in a black sleeveless top

Queensland Writers Fellowships

$15,000 each (three Fellowships) | Supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and State Library of Queensland

The Healing Giggle of Wonder by Tabitha Bird
Split Level by Ella Jeffery
Preserving: Stories by Kali Napier


Tabitha Bird, in red dress with flowers and strings of purple beads
Ella Jeffery in black halter neck dress
Kali Napier in red dress

The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award

$15,000 | Sponsored by The University of Queensland

Song of the Crocodile
by Nardi Simpson
Hachette Australia

Friends & Dark Shapes by Kavita Bedford (Text Publishing)  
Revenge: Murder in Three Parts by S.L. Lim (Transit Lounge) 
The Labyrinth by Amanda Lohrey (Text Publishing)
The Last Migration by Charlotte McConaghy (Penguin Random House


Song of the Crocodile by Nardi Simpson (Hachette)

The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award

$15,000 | Sponsored by The University of Queensland

Amnesia Road  
Luke Stegemann
NewSouth Publishing

Car Crash: A Memoir by Lech Blaine (Black Inc.)
Into the Loneliness - The Unholy Alliance of Ernestine Hill and Daisy Bates by Eleanor Hogan (Newsouth Books)
Truth Telling - History, Sovereignty and the Uluru Statement by Henry Reynolds (NewSouth Books) 
The Carbon Club by Marian Wilkinson (Allen & Unwin)  


The cover of Amnesia Road by Luke Stegemann - An aerial view of red and brown dirt, with creek beds and some trees

Children’s Book Award

$15,000 | Supported by Susan Hocking and Ian Mackie, and their family,
through The Hocking Mackie Trust at APS Foundation

Kirli Saunders and illustrated by Dub Leffler
Magabala Books

The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Dangerous Animals by Sami Bayly (Hachette)
How to Make a Bird by Meg McKinlay illustrated by Matt Ottley (Walker Books)
The Stolen Prince of Cloudburst by Jaclyn Moriarty illustrated by Kelly Canby (Allen & Unwin)
We are Wolves by Katrina Nannestad illustrated by Martina Heiduczek (ABC Books)


Bindi by Kirli Saunders illustrated by Dub Leffler (Magabala)

Griffith University Young Adult Book Award

$15,000 | Sponsored by Griffith University

Metal Fish, Falling Snow 
by Cath Moore               
Text Publishing

The End of the World is Bigger than Love by Davina Bell (Text Publishing)
Tiger Daughter by Rebecca Lim (Allen & Unwin) 
The Boy from the Mish by Gary Lonesborough (Allen & Unwin)
The Erasure Initiative by Lili Wilkinson (Allen & Unwin)


Metal Fish, Falling Snow by Cath Moore (Text Publishing)

University of Southern Queensland Steele Rudd Award for a Short Story Collection

$15,000 | Sponsored by University of Southern Queensland

Ordinary Matter 
by Laura Elvery               
University of Queensland Press

Smokehouse by Melissa Manning (University of Queensland Press)  
Smart Ovens for Lonely People by Elizabeth Tan (Brio Books)
Born Into This by Adam Thompson (University of Queensland Press)
Broken Rules and Other Stories by Barry Lee Thompson (Transit Lounge)


Ordinary Matter by Laura Elvery (UQP)

Judith Wright Calanthe Award for a Poetry Collection

$15,000 | Sponsored by Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund

Terminally Poetic 
by Ouyang Yu   
Ginninderra Press

Dropbear by Evelyn Araluen (University of Queensland Press)
Airplane Baby Banana Blanket by Benjamin Dodds (Recent Work Press)
Change Machine by Jaya Savige (University of Queensland Press)
Homecoming by Elfie Shiosaki (Magabala Books)


Terminally Poetic, Ouyang Yu

David Unaipon Award for an Emerging Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Writer

$15,000 | Sponsored by Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund

'Mekauwe = Tears Volume #1 (Notes For Song) 1970-2020'
by Ngankiburka-mekauwe (Senior Woman-of Water) Georgina Williams

'Politiks' by Chella Goldwin


Georgina Williams

Glendower Award for an Emerging Queensland Writer

$15,000 | Supported by Jenny Summerson through the Queensland Library Foundation

'The Whitewash'            
by Siang Lu

'On the Exhale' by Jason Gent
'The Luminous Heart' by Natalie Sprite 
'It's Chemical' by Lillian Telford


Siang Lu, author

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

$10,000 | Sponsored by The Courier-Mail

Mary’s Last Dance 
by Mary Li
Penguin Random House Australia


All Our Shimmering Skies, Trent Dalton (HarperCollins Publishers)
With My Little Eye, Sandra Hogan (Allen & Unwin)
Flyaway, Kathleen Jennings (Picador Australia)
From Where I Fell, Susan Johnson (Allen & Unwin)
Banks, Grantlee Kieza (ABC Books)
A Question of Colour, Pattie Lees with Adam C Lees (Magabala Books)
All the Murmuring Bones, A.G. Slatter (Titan Books)


cover of Mary's Last Dance

Watch the ceremony

Congratulations to all the 2021 finalists and winners!