The judges of the 2018 Dorothy Hewett Award for an Unpublished Manuscript are delighted to announce the five shortlisted writers. They are:
‘Lunation’, by Teresa Bell (New South Wales; fiction). ‘Lunation’, a novel in 72 frames, plays with representation and ambiguities and is dedicated to those who we lock up. Stylistically, it is an ambitious work that never leaves behind its human characters in extremis.
‘Some Sketchy Notes on Matter’, by Angela Gardner (Queensland; poetry). With a hovering intelligence and a laudable lack of ego, the beautifully controlled poems of ‘Some Sketchy Notes on Matter’ investigate the world with an ecstatic’s eye.
‘Everything as Perfect as a Bird’, by Kate Gordon (Tasmania; fiction). ‘Everything as Perfect as a Bird’ circles around fundamentalist Christian communities, gender and its restrictive settings alongside potential fluidities, and the life of artists in colonies and other collaborative arrangements to tell an intriguing story of a young woman entering adulthood.
‘Thistledown Seed’, by Louise Helfgott (Western Australia; fiction). This ambitious manuscript containing both fiction and memoir in multiple threads, follows the displacement and violence of the Holocaust for a Polish family that subsequently settles in Western Australia.
‘Legacy’, by Julie Watts (Western Australia; poetry). ‘Legacy’ holds a delicate strength both in form and subject. These are poems that reflect, with grace, honesty and a sometimes unnerving directness, on the complex interconnections of contemporary life.
The shortlisted entries were chosen from ninety-nine submissions. The judges of the 2018 award are Lucy Dougan, poet and niece of Dorothy Hewett; James Ley, literary critic and Contributing Editor of Sydney Review of Books; and Terri-ann White, Director of UWA Publishing.
The winner will be announced at a ceremony at the 2018 Perth Writers Festival. The winner receives $10,000 and a publishing contract with UWA Publishing.
The Dorothy Hewett Award is co-funded by the Copyright Agency and supported by The Monthly.