Celebrating Australian women’s contribution to literature, the Stella Prize is delighted to announce on, International Women’s Day, the six extraordinary books that have been announced on the 2017 shortlist.
Named after one of Australia’s iconic female authors, Stella Maria ‘Miles’ Franklin, the prize is committed to recognising the best books by Australian women, both fiction and nonfiction. By raising the profile of women writers, and celebrating their achievements, the Stella Prize hopes to erode the self-perpetuating cycle of under-representation that confronts all women writers.
From more than 180 entries, this year’s Stella Prize judges – novelist and Professor Emerita of English and Cultural Studies at the University of Western Australia, Brenda Walker (chair); award-winning author, Delia Falconer; national bookseller, Diana Johnston; journalist, columnist, TV screenwriter and author, Benjamin Law; and QUT Lecturer and Chair of First Nations Australia Writers’ Network Inc, Sandra Phillips – selected a long-list of twelve books that they have now narrowed down to a shortlist of six.
The 2017 Stella Prize shortlist is:
- Between a Wolf and a Dog by Georgia Blain (Scribe Publications)
- The Hate Race by Maxine Beneba Clarke (Hachette)
- Poum and Alexandre by Catherine de Saint Phalle (Transit Lounge)
- An Isolated Incident by Emily Maguire (Pan Macmillan)
- The Museum of Modern Love by Heather Rose (Allen & Unwin)
- Dying: A Memoir by Cory Taylor (Text Publishing)
“The 2017 Stella Prize shortlist celebrates books that combine extraordinary literary accomplishment with the social and familial reverberations of some of the most significant issues of our time: racism, violence against women, the aftermath of totalitarianism, the place of art in everyday life and the way we confront our individual mortality,” says Brenda Walker, chair of the 2017 judging panel.
The $50,000 Stella Prize will be presented for the best work of literature, fiction or nonfiction, published in 2016 by an Australian woman. This year, for the very first time, the shortlisted prize money has been increased from $2000 to $3000 for each shortlistee, thanks to the support of the Ivy H Thomas and Arthur A Thomas Trust managed by Equity Trustees.
For the second year, each of the shortlistees will receive a writing retreat supported by the Trawalla Foundation in addition to the prize money. The Stella Grasstrees Writing Retreat provides shortlisted authors with a three-week immersive retreat at a house in Point Addis on the Victorian coast, and includes associated travel expenses.
The 2017 Stella Prize will be awarded in Melbourne on Tuesday 18 April. For more information, visit: www.thestellaprize.com.au for details.
Image: The 2017 Stella Prize Shortlist Stack – photo by Connor Tomas O’Brien