2012 VIC Premier’s Lit Awards

On the 16th of October the winners of the 2012 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards were announced.

Congratulations to Bill Gammage who won the Victorian Prize for Literature (worth $100,000) for his novel The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines Made Australia. For a book that was 12 years in the making, Gammage said that winning the prize was ‘life-changing’.

Past prize wins for The Biggest Estate on Earth include: the Prime Minister’s Literary Prize for Australian History, the History category of the 2012 Queensland Literary Awards, and the individual section of the 2011 Manning Clark House National Cultural Awards. The book was also shortlisted in the General Fiction Book of the Year category of the 2012 Australian Book Industry Awards.

Congratulations also to the winners of the other categories:

Vance Palmer Prize for Fiction ($25,000)

Foal’s Bread by Gillian Mears

The long-awaited new novel from the award-winning author of The Grass Sister tells the story of two generations of the Nancarrow family and the high-jumping horse circuit prior to the Second World War. A love story of impossible beauty and sadness, it is also a chronicle of dreams ‘turned inside out’, and miracles that never last, framed against a world both tender and unspeakably hard.



CJ Dennis Prize for Poetry ($25,000)

Armour by John Kinsella

With Armour, the great Australian poet John Kinsella has written his most spiritual work to date and his most politically engaged. The world in which these poems unfold is strangely poised between the material and the immaterial, and everything which enters it, kestrel and fox, moth and almond, does so illuminated by its own vivid presence: the impression is less a poet honouring his subjects than uncannily inhabiting them.

READ  The Man Booker Prize



Prize for Writing for Young Adults

The Shadow Girl by John Larkin

The shadow girl never imagined she’d live on the streets. After her parents disappear, life with her aunt and uncle takes a sinister turn. Terrified that the authorities will believe her uncle over her, she flees.    She tricks her way into a new school and pretends to have a loving family. No one knows she sleeps in rail yards, sand dunes and abandoned houses. At school she meets the author she will call on years later. Together they piece together the story of how she survived, who helped her, and the friend she wishes she could have saved.    Thrilling, profound and blackly funny, The Shadow Girl is John Larkin’s best and most important novel to date.



Louis Esson Prize for Drama ($25,00)

A Golem Story by Lally Katz

People’s Choice Award

National Interest by Aiden Fennessy


As announced on September 5, the winner of the $20,000 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing was Am I Black Enough For You? by Anita Heiss.

Announced in June, Graeme Simsion won the $15,000 prize of the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript for his novel The Rosie Project.

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