Prime Minister's Literary Awards

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Not to be confused with the New Zealand Prime Minister's Awards for Literary Achievement.

The Australian Prime Minister's Literary Awards (PMLA) were announced at the end of 2007 by the incoming First Rudd Ministry following the 2007 election. They are administered by the Minister for the Arts.[1]

The awards were designed as "a new initiative celebrating the contribution of Australian literature to the nation's cultural and intellectual life." The awards are held annually and initially provided a tax-free prize of A$100,000 in each category, making it Australia's richest literary award in total. In 2011, the prize money was split into $80,000 for each category winner and $5,000 for up to four short-listed entries. The award was initially given in four categories – fiction, non-fiction, young adult and children's fiction – as selected by three judging panels. In 2012, a poetry category was added and the former Prime Minister's Prize for Australian History was incorporated into the award. "The awards are open to works written by Australian citizens and permanent residents. Authors, publishers and literary agents are eligible to enter works, first published in the calendar year prior to the awards."[2]

Contents

Previous winners[edit]

Year Fiction Non-Fiction Young Adult Fiction Children's Fiction Poetry Australian History
2008 The Zookeeper's War by Steven Conte Ochre and Rust: Artefacts and Encounters on Australian Frontiers by Philip Jones NA NA NA NA
2009 The Boat by Nam Le House of Exile: The Life and Times of Heinrich Mann and Nelly-Kroeger Mann by Evelyn Juers and

Drawing the Global Colour Line by Marilyn Lake and Henry Reynolds

NA NA NA NA
2010 Dog Boy by Eva Hornung The Colony: A History of Early Sydney by Grace Karskens Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God by Bill Condon Star Jumps by Lorraine Marwood NA NA
2011 Traitor by Stephen Daisley The Hard Light of Day by Rod Moss Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley Shake a Leg by Boori Monty Pryor and Jan Ormerod NA NA
2012 Foal's Bread by Gillian Mears An Eye for Eternity: The Life of Manning Clark by Mark McKenna When We Were Two by Robert Newton Goodnight, Mice!, written by Frances Watts and illustrated by Judy Watson Interferon Psalms by Luke Davies The Biggest Estate on Earth by Bill Gammage
2013[3] Questions of Travel by Michelle de Kretser The Australian Moment by George Megalogenis Fog a Dox by Bruce Pascoe Red by Libby Gleeson Jam Tree Gully: Poems by John Kinsella Farewell, Dear People by Ross McMullin
2014[4] A World of Other People by Steven Carroll and The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan Moving Among Strangers by Gabrielle Carey and Madeleine: A Life of Madeleine St John by Helen Trinca The Incredible Here and Now by Felicity Castagna Silver Buttons by Bob Graham Drag Down to Unlock or Place an Emergency Call by Melinda Smith Broken Nation: Australians in the Great War by Joan Beaumont and Australia's Secret War: How Unionists Sabotaged Our Troops in World War II by Hal G.P. Colebatch
2015[5] The Golden Age by Joan London John Olsen: An Artist's Life by Darleen Bungey and Wild Bleak Bohemia: Marcus Clarke, Adam Lindsay Gordon and Henry Kendall by Michael Wilding The Protected by Claire Zorn One Minute's Silence by David Metzenthen and illustrated by Michael Camilleri Poems 1957-2013 by Geoffrey Lehmann Charles Bean by Ross Coulthart and The Spy Catchers - The Official History of ASIO Vol 1 by David Horner

2008 awards[edit]

2008 panels[edit]

For the inaugural 2008 awards, six Australians were appointed by the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts to the judging panels: three each for the fiction and non-fiction awards.[6]

2008 fiction panel[edit]

2008 non-fiction panel[edit]

  • Hilary Charlesworth, academic (chair)
  • Sally Morgan, indigenous artist and author
  • John Doyle, comedian and script writer

2008 shortlist and winners[edit]

The final decisions on the shortlist and winners for the awards was made by Prime Minister (Kevin Rudd) based on the judging panels’ recommendations.[6] The following entries, out of more than 170 received, were selected for the shortlist:[1]

Listed in official shortlist order; winners in bold type.

2008 fiction[edit]

2008 non-fiction[edit]

2009 awards[edit]

2009 panels[edit]

On 15 May 2009 the panels for the 2009 awards were announced.[7]

2009 fiction panel[edit]

  • Professor Peter Pierce (chair)
  • Professor John A. Hay AC
  • Dr Lyn Gallacher

2009 non-fiction panel[edit]

2009 shortlist and winners[edit]

The 2009 shortlist from more than 250 entries was announced on Friday 18 September 2009 in Melbourne. The winners were announced on 2 November 2009.[8] Two works shared the non-fiction award.

Listed in official shortlist order; winners in bold type.

2009 fiction[edit]

2009 non-fiction[edit]

2010 awards[edit]

On 30 March 2010 two new award categories were announced: "young adults' fiction" and "children's fiction". The prize for both new awards was also $100,000; its entries were judged by one judging panel.

2010 panels[edit]

On 14 May 2010 the panels for the 2010 awards were announced.[9]

2010 fiction panel[edit]

The 2009 fiction panel returned in 2010:

  • Professor Peter Pierce (chair)
  • Professor John A. Hay AC
  • Dr Lyn Gallacher

2010 non-fiction panel[edit]

  • Brian Johns AO (chair)
  • Colin Steele
  • Dr Faye Sutherland

2010 children's and young adult fiction panel[edit]

  • Dr Robyn Sheahan-Bright (chair)
  • Mike Shuttleworth
  • Mary-Ruth Mendel

2010 shortlist and winners[edit]

From over 330 entries, the 2010 shortlist of 29 titles was announced on 15 July 2010.[10] The winners were announced on 8 November 2010.[11]

Listed in official shortlist order; winners in bold type.

2010 fiction[edit]

2010 non-fiction[edit]

  • The Water Dreamers: The Remarkable History of Our Dry Continent by Michael Cathcart
  • Strange Places: A Memoir of Mental Illness by Will Elliott
  • The Colony: A History of Early Sydney by Grace Karskens
  • The Life and Death of Democracy by John Keane
  • The Blue Plateau: A Landscape Memoir by Mark Tredinnick
  • The Ghost at the Wedding by Shirley Walker

2010 young adult fiction[edit]

2010 children's fiction[edit]

2011 awards[edit]

Entries for the 2011 awards opened in January 2011 and an annual timetable was implemented: the shortlist was announced in late May and winners in early July. The awards were restructured to provide greater recognition for shortlisted authors. In each category, the winning book was awarded $80,000; $5,000 was awarded to up to four shortlisted titles. The eligibility criteria were extended to include e-books, and wordless picture books were eligible in the children's fiction category. The panellists from 2010 were returned for 2011.[12]

2011 shortlist and winners[edit]

From 379 entries, the 2011 shortlist of 20 titles was announced on 26 May 2011.[13] The winners, listed below in bold type, were announced on 8 July 2011.[14]

2011 fiction[edit]

2011 non-fiction[edit]

2011 young adult fiction[edit]

2011 children's fiction[edit]

2012 awards[edit]

The 2012 awards were launched in early December 2011; entries closed on 1 February 2012. A new award for poetry was announced and the Prize for Australian History was incorporated.[15] The winners, listed below in bold type, were announced on 23 July 2012.[16][17]

2012 panels[edit]

The panels for the 2012 awards consist of:

2012 fiction and poetry panel[edit]

2012 non-fiction and history panel[edit]

2012 children's and young adult fiction panel[edit]

  • Judith White (chair)
  • Mary-Ruth Mendel
  • Robert (Bob) Sessions

2012 shortlist and winners[edit]

From 509 entries, the 2012 shortlist of 25 titles was announced on 20 March 2012.[18][19]

2012 fiction[edit]

2012 poetry[edit]

2012 non-fiction[edit]

  • A Short History of Christianity by Geoffrey Blainey
  • Michael Kirby Paradoxes and Principles by Alexander Jonathan (A. J.) Brown
  • Kinglake-350 by Adrian Hyland
  • When Horse Became Saw by Anthony Macris
  • An Eye for Eternity: The Life of Manning Clark by Mark McKenna

2012 Prize for Australian History[edit]

  • 1835: The Founding of Melbourne and the Conquest of Australia by James Boyce
  • The Biggest Estate on Earth by Bill Gammage
  • Breaking the Sheep's Back by Charles Massy
  • Indifferent Inclusion: Aboriginal people and the Australian Nation by Russell McGregor
  • Immigration Nation: The Secret History of Us by Renegade Films Australia

2012 young adult fiction[edit]

  • A Straight Line to My Heart by Bill Condon
  • Being Here by Barry Jonsberg
  • Pan's Whisper by Sue Lawson
  • When We Were Two by Robert Newton
  • Alaska by Sue Saliba

2012 children's fiction[edit]

2013 awards[edit]

The 2013 awards were launched in late 2012; entries closed on 17 January 2013.

2013 panels[edit]

The panels for the 2013 awards consist of:[20]

2013 fiction and poetry panel[edit]

2013 non-fiction and history panel[edit]

  • Michael Sexton SC (chair)
  • Colin Steele
  • Susan Hayes
  • Professor Susan Magarey

2013 children's and young adult fiction panel[edit]

  • Judith White (chair)
  • Adele Rice
  • Robert (Bob) Sessions

2013 shortlist and winners[edit]

The 2013 shortlist of 29 titles was announced on 17 June 2013.[21] The winners, listed below in bold type, were announced on 15 August 2013 at the State Library of Queensland.[22]

2013 fiction[edit]

2013 poetry[edit]

2013 non-fiction[edit]

2013 Prize for Australian History[edit]

  • The Sex Lives of Australians: A History by Frank Bongiorno
  • Sandakan by Paul Ham
  • Gough Whitlam by Jenny Hocking
  • Farewell, dear people by Ross McMullin
  • The Censor's Library by Nicole Moore

2013 young adult fiction[edit]

  • Everything Left Unsaid by Jessica Davidson
  • The Children of the King by Sonya Hartnett
  • Grace Beside Me by Sue McPherson
  • Fog a Dox by Bruce Pascoe
  • Friday Brown by Vikki Wakefield

2013 children's fiction[edit]

  • Red by Libby Gleeson
  • Today We Have No Plans by Jane Godwin and illustrated by Anna Walker
  • What's the Matter, Aunty May? by Peter Friend and illustrated by Andrew Joyner
  • The Beginner's Guide to Revenge by Marianne Musgrove

2014 awards[edit]

The 2014 awards were launched in December 2013; entries closed on 28 February 2014. The winners, listed below in bold type, were announced on 8 December 2014.[23]


2014 panels[edit]

The panels for the 2014 awards consist of:[24]

2014 fiction and poetry panel[edit]

2014 non-fiction and history panel[edit]

2014 children's and young adult fiction panel[edit]

  • Mike Shuttleworth (chair)
  • Belle Alderman
  • Kate Colley
  • Mark MacLeod
  • Irini Savvides

2014 shortlist and winners[edit]

The 2014 shortlist of 30 titles was announced on 19 October 2014.[25]

2014 fiction[edit]

2014 poetry[edit]

2014 non-fiction[edit]

2014 Prize for Australian History[edit]

2014 young adult fiction[edit]

  • The Incredible Here and Now by Felicity Castagna
  • Pureheart by Cassandra Golds
  • Girl Defective by Simmone Howell
  • Life in Outer Space by Melissa Keil
  • The First Third by Will Kostakis

2014 children's fiction[edit]

2015 awards[edit]

The 2015 awards were launched in December 2014; entries closed on 28 February 2015.[26]

2015 panels[edit]

The panels for the 2015 awards consist of:[27]

2015 fiction and poetry panel[edit]

2015 non-fiction and history panel[edit]

2015 children's and young adult fiction panel[edit]

  • Mike Shuttleworth (chair)
  • Belle Alderman
  • Kate Colley
  • Mark MacLeod
  • Irini Savvides

2015 shortlist and winners[edit]

The 2015 shortlist of 30 titles was announced on 23 November 2015.[28] The winners were announced in Sydney on 14 December 2015.[5]

2015 fiction[edit]

2015 poetry[edit]

2015 non-fiction[edit]

2015 Prize for Australian History[edit]

  • Charles Bean by Ross Coulthart
  • Descent into Hell by Peter Brune
  • Menzies at War by Anne Henderson
  • The Europeans in Australia—Volume Three: Nation by Alan Atkinson
  • The Spy Catchers — The Official History of ASIO Vol 1 by David Horner

2015 young adult fiction[edit]

  • Are You Seeing Me? by Darren Groth
  • The Astrologer's Daughter by Rebecca Lim
  • The Minnow by Diana Sweeney
  • The Protected by Claire Zorn
  • Tigers on the Beach by Doug MacLeod

2015 children's fiction[edit]

  • My Dad is a Bear by Nicola Connelly and illustrated by Annie White
  • My Two Blankets by Irena Kobald and illustrated by Freya Blackwood
  • One Minute's Silence by David Metzenthen and illustrated by Michael Camilleri
  • Two Wolves by Tristan Bancks
  • Withering-by-Sea by Judith Rossell

2016 awards[edit]

2016 shortlist and winners[edit]

The 2016 shortlist of 30 titles was announced on 17 October 2016.[29] The winners were announced on 9 November 2015.[30]

2016 fiction[edit]

2016 poetry[edit]

2016 Prize for Australian History[edit]

  • The Story of Australia's People. The Rise and Fall of Ancient Australia by Geoffrey Blainey
  • Let My People Go: The untold story of Australia and the Soviet Jews 1959–89 by Sam Lipski and Suzanne D Rutland
  • Red Professor: The Cold War Life of Fred Rose by Peter Monteath and Valerie Munt
  • Ned Kelly: A Lawless Life by Doug Morrissey
  • The War with Germany: Volume III – The Centenary History of Australia and the Great War by Robert Stevenson

2016 non-fiction[edit]

2016 children's fiction[edit]

  • Adelaide's Secret World by Elise Hurst
  • Sister Heart by Sally Morgan
  • Perfect by Danny Parker and Freya Blackwood
  • The Greatest Gatsby: A visual book of grammar by Tohby Riddle
  • Mr Huff by Anna Walker

2016 young adult fiction[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Call for entries (22 February 2008)
  2. ^ PM Literary Awards
  3. ^ "2013 PM's Literary Award winners announced". Australian Government - Department of Communications and the Arts. Retrieved 19 October 2016. 
  4. ^ "2014 PM's Literary Award winners announced". Australian Government - Department of Communications and the Arts. Retrieved 2 January 2016. 
  5. ^ a b "2015 Prime Minister's Literary Award winners". Australian Government - Department of Communications and the Arts. Retrieved 19 October 2016. 
  6. ^ a b 2008 judging panels
  7. ^ Judges for 2009 Prime Minister's literary awards (media release), 15 May 2009, Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts
  8. ^ "2009 Prime Minister's Literary Awards winners"
  9. ^ 2010 judging panels
  10. ^ 2010 Shortlist
  11. ^ 2010 Prime Minister’s Literary Award winners
  12. ^ "2011 Prime Minister's Literary Awards"
  13. ^ 2011 Shortlist
  14. ^ "Prime Minister's Literary Awards – 2011 Winners announced". Retrieved 8 July 2011. 
  15. ^ "Poets and Historians to be Honoured in Literary Awards", Prime Minister of Australia, 1 December 2011
  16. ^ "Mears win's PM's literary award for Foal's Bread". Retrieved 23 July 2012. 
  17. ^ "Prime Minister's Literary Awards". Retrieved 23 July 2012. 
  18. ^ "Prime Minister's Literary Awards attract record entries", Media release 20 March 2012
  19. ^ "2012 shortlists"
  20. ^ Prime Minister's Literary Awards 2013 judging panels
  21. ^ "2013 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards Shortlists Announced"
  22. ^ "2013 Prime Minister's Literary Award winners", Department of Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sport
  23. ^ Prime Minister's Literary Awards 2014 winners
  24. ^ Prime Minister's Literary Awards 2014 judging panels
  25. ^ 2014 Prime Minister's Literary Awards shortlists
  26. ^ Prime Minister's Literary Awards 2015 entry guidelines
  27. ^ Prime Minister's Literary Awards 2015 judging panels
  28. ^ 2015 Prime Minister's Literary Awards shortlists
  29. ^ 2016 Prime Minister's Literary Awards shortlist announced
  30. ^ This year's winners and shortlist

External links[edit]