Friday, March 18th, 2011
It’s the beginning of literary prize season. The Commonwealth Writers’ prize kicked off proceedings with Australian author Kim Scott taking the regional award for his book That Deadman Dance.
This book has just been longlisted for this year’s Miles Franklin award. It’s the second time Kim Scott has been in the running. His book Benang won in 2000, sharing the prize with Thea Astley’s Drylands.
The 2011 Miles Franklin Literary Award longlist is:
|Rocks in the Belly||Jon Bauer||Scribe Publications|
|The Good Daughter||Honey Brown||Viking, an imprint of Penguin Australia|
|The Mary Smokes Boy||Patrick Holland||Transit Lounge Publishing|
|The Piper’s Son||Melina Marchetta||Viking, an imprint of Penguin Australia|
|When Colts Ran||Roger McDonald||Vintage (Random House Australia)|
|Time’s Long Ruin||Stephen Orr||Wakefield Press|
|That Deadman’s Dance||Kim Scott||Picador|
|The Legacy||Kirsten Tranter||4th Estate|
|Bereft||Chris Womersley||Scribe Publications|
How did the papers report the prize this year?
The Australian’s Stephen Romei did a breakdown of the number of books each author has published. Jon Bauer and Kirsten Tranter are first timers, there are 3 second time novelists, Stephen Orr is a third time novelist and then there are Miles Franklin veterans Roger McDonald and Kim Scott.
The Age printed three paragraphs on the longlist in the paper, honing in on debut novelist Jon Bauer’s happiness about becoming a citizen and the Herald Sun profiles the other debut novelist Kirsten Tranter. Guardian Messenger tells us that Adelaide publisher Wakefield’s book is on the list, Stephen Orr’s Times Long Ruin. The West Australian celebrates Kim Scott’s listing.
Jason Steeger is on the lookout for controversy in the SMH given the criticism of the award by one of last year’s shortlisted writers, Steeger writes: Alex Miller used the announcement of the shortlist in which he featured as an opportunity to criticise Kevin Rudd’s decision to set up the PM’s literary awards while cutting literary funding elsewhere. He also lamented that Rudd hadn’t considered buttressing the Miles in its position as Australia’s most significant literary prize. It seems griping works. This year the prize money has been boosted from $42 000 to $50 000 and the prize will be announced for the first time in Melbourne.
All in all there was a smattering of news space given to the announcement of the longlist. Let’s see if this changes for the shortlist announcement on April 19, followed by the award dinner on 22 June.