Morag Fraser's 19 July column in the Age's 'Education' section attempts to find the place of Australian literature in Australia's education puzzle. One piece of her puzzle runs like this: 'there are many ways of educating students, but we know that one of the most effective is through story, through narrative. Australia is rich in narrators, but we are not keeping their stories in mind, let alone in print ... There is serious slippage between what we say we want for Australia and for the young people who are our future and what we are doing - and not doing - in and with our tertiary institutions.'
Fraser's other puzzle pieces are currently available online via the Age's website under the title 'Missing Pieces in a Very Australian Puzzle'.
The shortlists for the 'new look' Victorian Premier's Literary Awards were announced in Melbourne this week. The 2011 awards comprise five categories (reduced from ten in 2010): the C. J. Dennis Prize for Poetry, the Vance Palmer Prize for Fiction, the Nettie Palmer Prize for Non-Fiction, the Prize for Writing for Young Adults and the Louis Esson Prize for Drama.
Each category winner will receive $25,000 and will contest the Victorian Prize for Literature, which carries a purse of $100,000.There will also be a popularly-voted People's Choice Award with all shortlisted works in contention.
In a generous act, prompted by downsizing, Thomas Keneally has donated his 2,500-plus volume library to the Sydney Mechanics' School of Arts. The books, together with some of Keneally's memorabilia, will now form the Tom Keneally Centre. The new centre will be used for book launches, readings and other public events and will be formally launched by the New South Wales Governor, Marie Bashir, on 18 August.
Anh Do's The Happiest Refugee has received three prizes at the 2011 Australian Book Industry Awards. Anh Do's autobiography won the overall Book of the Year Category and the Newcomer of the Year; he shared Biography of the Year with Paul Kelly's How To Make Gravy.
For full details of all category winners, see the Australian Book Industry Awards website.
The nominations for the 2011 Deadly Sounds Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Music, Sport, Entertainment and Community Awards were announced at the Sydney Opera House on Monday, 18 July. Categories include Outstanding Achievement in Literature and Film of the Year.
Following the death in May of poet and reviewer Kerry Leves, the Melbourne-based journal Overland has created an online memorial page where Leves's friends can write their ' fondest personal memories and recollections'. The page also includes an obituary by John Stephenson.
Overland invites further contributions from friends and associates of Leves. To read the page or to add your own recollections, click here.
The 2011 Nielsen BookData Booksellers Choice Award shortlist comprises five titles:
- The Happiest Refugee: A Memoir - Anh Do (Allen & Unwin)
- How to Make Gravy - Paul Kelly (Hamish Hamilton)
- The Legend of the Golden Snail - Graeme Base (Viking Australia)
- Noni the Pony - Alison Lester (Allen & Unwin)
- Bereft -Chris Womersley (Scribe Publications)
The winner will be announced at the Australian Booksellers Association (ABA) Dinner, on 24 July as part of the ABA Conference. The Booksellers Choice Award recognises 'the Australian new release that booksellers most enjoyed reading, marketing and handselling during the previous year'.
For more information, see the ABA website.
The Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA) have announced their 2011 shortlist for eighteen of their twenty annual awards. The eighteen winners will be announced on Monday 25 July 2011, along with the winners of two awards whose recipients are selected by industry experts: the Pixie O'Harris Award (for outstanding, distinguished, and dedicated service to the development and reputation of Australian children's books) and the Lloyd O'Neil Award (for outstanding, distinguished, and dedicated service to the development and reputation of the Australian book industry).
On Friday July 8 the Prime Minister announced the winners of the four categories in the 2011 Prime Minister's Literary Awards. Congratulating the shortlisted authors, the Prime Minister said that writers helped us 'imagine the contours of our nation' and 'brought us that little bit closer to our better selves.'
The winners are:
Fiction: Stephen Daisley's Traitor
Non-Fiction: The Hard Light of Day by Rod Moss
Young Adult Fiction: Cath Crowley's Graffiti Moon
Children's Fiction: Shake a Leg by Boori Monty Pryor and illustrator Jan Ormerod
The winners each received a prize of $80,000. The shortlisted authors also received $5000 each.
Responding to feedback from AustLit users during the February trial period, the Federated Search has been refined and will again be included as a default with your standard AustLit search from Friday 8 July.
The Federated Search was developed as part of the Aus-e-Lit Project which has aimed to help AustLit users better manage the increasing amount of digitised material available on the internet. The Federated Search delivers a snapshot of resources at a number of selected external databases. More databases will be included in the future as they become available. Your suggestions are welcome.
The Federated Search will be set as a default on 8 July, but you can easily deactivate the search by deselecting the Federated checkbox under QUICK SEARCH. Your computer will remember your preference and this preference will remain set for future sessions should you not wish to use the Federated Search regularly.
Please visit the Aus-e-Lit Page for information about other digital initiatives and tools developed as part of the Aus-e-Lit project.