South Australian author Eva Hornung has been awarded the state’s highest literary honour, winning the $25,000 Premier’s Award at the 2018 Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature.
Ms Hornung beat 36 other shortlisted authors from around Australia to win the prestigious prize for her novel The Last Garden, which also won the $15,000 Fiction Award.
She is the first South Australian author to win either award, joining a stellar list of previous Premier’s Award winners including Robert Drewe, Peter Carey, Dorothy Porter and Tim Flannery.
The awards were announced in a ceremony at today’s opening day of Adelaide Writers’ Week in the Pioneer Women’s Memorial Gardens, as part of the 2018 Adelaide Festival.
Western Australian author Tim Winton won the $15,000 Non-Fiction Award for his collection of memoirs, The Boy Behind the Curtain, while the $15,000 John Bray Poetry Award went to Pam Brown (NSW) for her poetry collection Missing Up.
Wendy Orr (NSW) won the $15,000 Children’s Literature award for her evocative historical book Dragonfly Song, and the $15,000 Young Adult Fiction Award went to Justine Larbalestier (NSW) for psychological thriller My Sister Rosa.
South Australian author and ABC broadcaster Annette Marner was awarded the Arts South Australia Wakefield Press Unpublished Manuscript Award for her story A New Name for the Colour Blue, winning $10,000 and publication of her manuscript by Wakefield Press.
South Australian playwright Emily Steel won the $12,500 Jill Blewett Playwright’s Award for her play 19 weeks, which will now be developed with the assistance of State Theatre Company South Australia.
South Australian authors Jude Aquilina, Danielle Clode and Edoardo Crismani were also awarded fellowships worth $15,000 each.
Premier and Minister for the Arts, Jay Weatherill congratulated all the winners on their achievements, stating: "I am particularly pleased to present the Premier’s Award to South Australian author Eva Hornung for her book The Last Garden, which the judges commended as a compelling, powerful and beautifully evocative tale.
"It is great to make Ms Hornung the first South Australian recipient of this prestigious award for what is also such a uniquely South Australian story."
Introduced by the State Government in 1986 and managed by Arts South Australia, the biennial Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature celebrate Australia’s writing culture by offering national and state-based literary prizes.
The awards offer a total prize pool of $167,500 across six national and five South Australian categories, including the coveted Premier’s Award, introduced in 1996, worth $25,000 for the overall winner.
"These prestigious biennial awards and fellowships are a chance to recognise and reward those writers who have made us laugh, cry, think, and feel this year," said Arts South Australia Executive Director, Peter Louca, "and who have enriched Australia’s literary landscape.
"They are also another way in which Arts South Australia supports the career development of writers across all genres, ensuring our rich publishing and literary culture continues to thrive."
2018 Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature winners
National Awards for published works
Premier’s Award, and Fiction Award - $25,000 and $15,000
The Last Garden by Eva Hornung (SA) (Text Publishing)
Children’s Literature Award - $15,000
Dragonfly Song by Wendy Orr (NSW) (Allen & Unwin)
Young Adult Fiction Award - $15,000
My Sister Rosa by Justine Larbalestier (NSW) (Allen & Unwin)
John Bray Poetry Award - $15,000
Missing up by Pam Brown (NSW) (Vagabond Press)
Non-Fiction Award - $15,000
The Boy Behind the Curtain by Tim Winton (WA) (Penguin Books Australia)
South Australian Awards and Fellowships
Jill Blewett Playwright’s Award - $12,500
19 weeks by Emily Steel
Arts South Australia Wakefield Press Unpublished Manuscript Award - $10,000 + publication of the winning manuscript by Wakefield Press
A New Name for the Colour Blue by Annette Marner
The Barbara Hanrahan Fellowship - $15,000
The Max Fatchen Fellowship - $15,000
Tangkanungku Pintyanthi Fellowship - $15,000
To download high resolution images for all finalists and winners, visit: http://bit.ly/AFAL2018