I was so excited to have been invited to the 2018 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards at the State Library of NSW. It is always an exhilarating night with a great bookish buzz.

The awards have everything a literary addict requires: they take place in a library… which has loads of books… where an array of super talented authors are gathered… who receive recognition for their words, words that have been weaved into stories to entertain, excite, inspire, make us laugh or cry, connect us and transform us. Oh, and there is also champagne. Mix that in with a week of events at the Sydney Writers’ Festival and it certainly makes for a good time.

Helping me write my blog post about it is Barney, the dachshund, who crawled up on my desk to spell check my blog post. Hope he’s done a good job!

With a total prize money of $295,000 the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards celebrate and honour the achievements of Australian writers.

The NSW Premier, The Hon. Gladys Berejiklian MP said: “The NSW Government is committed to supporting writers and literature. Through their exceptional talent for story‐telling and research the 2018 winning writers have delivered outstanding literary works which provoke critical thought as well as entertaining us.”

According to Senior Judge, Suzanne Leal: “With clarity, with urgency and often, too, with humour, the winning entries challenge our understanding of Australia’s history and question where we are headed. We congratulate the writers — both new and established — for these exciting, original and thought‐provoking works. The 30 judges appreciate the ongoing support shown by the Premier and the NSW Government to Australian writers and their craft.

And the winners are:

Book of the Year ($10,000)
Taboo by Kim Scott (Pan Macmillan Australia)

Christina Stead Prize for Fiction ($40,000)
The Book of Dirt by Bram Presser (Text Publishing)

UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing ($5,000 — sponsored by UTS)
The Book of Dirt by Bram Presser (Text Publishing)

Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-fiction ($40,000)
Passchendaele: Requiem for Doomed Youth by Paul Ham (Penguin Random House Australia)

Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry ($30,000)
Argosy by Bella Li (Vagabond Press)

Patricia Wrightson Prize for Children’s Literature ($30,000)
How to Bee by Bren MacDibble (Allen & Unwin)

Ethel Turner Prize for Young People’s Literature ($30,000)
The Ones That Disappeared by Zana Fraillon (Hachette Australia)

Nick Enright Prize for Playwriting ($30,000)
Black is the New White by Nakkiah Lui (Sydney Theatre Company)

Betty Roland Prize for Scriptwriting ($30,000)
Deep Water: The Real Story written by Amanda Blue and Jacob Hickey (Blackfella Films)
Top of the Lake: China Girl, Series 2 Episode 4 ‘Birthday’ written by Jane Campion and Gerard Lee (See-Saw Films)

Multicultural NSW Award ($20,000 — sponsored by Multicultural NSW)
The Permanent Resident by Roanna Gonsalves (UWA Publishing)

Indigenous Writers’ Prize ($30,000) — biennial award
Taboo by Kim Scott (Pan Macmillan Australia)

People’s Choice Award
The Book of Dirt by Bram Presser (Text Publishing)


To check out all the great tweets and pictures from the 2018 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards – Robin at Write or Wrong has it covered. Click HERE to view.