The Queensland Literary Awards recognise outstanding achievement by Australian writers. All nominations are checked for eligibility by State Library of Queensland staff and forwarded to the category judges.

Each category is assessed by a panel of independent judges, with a minimum of three judges assigned to each category. Judges are invited by State Library of Queensland on a three-year term, and are subject to an internal vetting process. Panels are made up of a mix of authors, critics, academics, publishers, media professionals, editors, librarians, reviewers, teachers, arts organisation representatives, booksellers and journalists.

Judges have eight weeks to read the nominations, assess the merit of the work, meet and discuss the nominations and decide on the finalists and winners. The judges will award the category prize to the nomination deemed to possess the highest literary merit.

Judges will disclose any actual or potential conflicts of interest as soon as they become aware of them, and not participate in judging activities related to that nomination. Judging panels may contact authors or nominators to request additional information if they feel it is required. Judges also have the right to move a nomination to a different category if they deem the category to be more relevant.
The outcomes of the judging process are final and no discussion or correspondence will be entered into in regards to final award decisions or the judging process. Queensland Literary Awards reserves the right not to award in a category.

2017 Queensland Literary Awards Judges

Queensland Writers Fellowships

Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Awards

Patrick Holland is the author of six novels, including The Mary Smokes Boys (2010) which was shortlisted for the Age Book of the Year and longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award; a travel book, Riding The Trains in Japan (2011); and a collection of short stories, The Source of the Sound (2011), which won the Scott Prize. His work has been published in Australia, the USA, Canada, the UK and Ireland, Italy and Japan. He is completing a PhD at QUT, researching Japanese literary minimalism. His most recent novel One (2016) treats the final stand of Australia’s last bushranger, Jim Kenniff.

Karen Foxlee writes for both children and adults. Her books for younger readers include Ophelia and the Marvellous Boy and A Most Magical Girl, which was recently shortlisted in the CBCA Book of the Year Awards. Her adult novels The Anatomy of Wings and The Midnight Dress have been published internationally to much acclaim. She lives and writes in Queensland, Australia.

Sue Wright is the Director of Brisbane-based micropress Tiny Owl Workshop. She is best known for fusing traditional publishing with craft, animation and digital world building. Her latest project, The Westbury Faery, a co-production with Plot Media and Log Cabin Productions, won the 2017 Shorty Award for Augmented Reality.

Emerging Queensland Writer – Unpublished Manuscript Award

Madonna Duffy has over 25 years’ experience in publishing in Australia and the UK. She is now Head of Publishing at the University of Queensland Press where she has published authors such as David Malouf, Matthew Condon, Ellen van Neerven, Melissa Lucashenko, Julie Koh and Sarah Holland-Batt, as well as over a decade of winners of the Qld Literary Awards Emerging Author category. Madonna has been a member of many industry committees and boards and regularly gives guest lectures and speaks at industry and community events.

Trent Jamieson is a bookseller, occasional sessional academic and multi-award winning novelist and short story writer. His latest novel, Day Boy, won the Aurealis Awards for best Fantasy and best Horror novel published in 2015.

Inga Simpson is the author of Understory: a life with trees, Mr Wigg, Nest, and Where the Trees Were, which was shortlisted for an Indie award, and longlisted for the Green Carnation Prize and the Miles Franklin Literary Award. Inga has PhDs in creative writing and English literature, and her work has appeared in Griffith Review, Review of Australian Fiction, Clues, Writing Queensland and the Dictionary of Literary Biography. In 2015, Inga was awarded a QLD Literary Fellowship to research and develop her next novel, Willowman.

Rohan Wilson is a writer and critic. He is the author of two novels, The Roving Party and To Name Those Lost. His work has won numerous awards, including the 2011 The Australian/Vogel's Literary Award, the 2015 Victorian Premier’s Award, and the 2016 Adelaide Festival Award. He lectures in Creative Writing at QUT.

Unpublished Indigenous Writer - David Unaipon Award

Melissa Lucashenko is a Bundjalung novelist and essayist. Mullumbimby was awarded the 2013 Deloitte Queensland Literary Award for Fiction, won the 2014 Victorian Premiers Prize for Indigenous Writing, and was longlisted for the Miles Franklin, Stella, and Dublin IMPAC Literary Prize 2015. Melissa is also a Walkley Award winner for her non-fiction, as well as a founding member of the women’s rights organisation, Sisters Inside. In 2016 she was awarded the $80 000 Copyright Agency Limited Fellowship to write her forthcoming novel, Too Much Lip (UQP).

Jill Eddington has been recently appointed as UQP’s CE0. Jill has a long association with the literary sector nationally, most recently she was Director, Literature at the Australia Council.

Dr Jared Thomas’ theatre and fiction works explore the power of belonging and culture. In 2015 his title Calypso Summer joined the 2015 International Youth Library White Raven list, given to books that deserve worldwide attention because of their universal themes and exceptional artistic and literary style. His recent releases include Calypso Summer, Songs That Sound Like Blood and the Game Day series written with NBA player Patty Mills. Jared is an Indigenous Literacy Foundation Ambassador.


Queensland Premier’s Award for a work of State Significance

Simon Cleary is the critically acclaimed author of the novels The Comfort of Figs and Closer to Stone.

Dr Donna Hancox is the Director of Research Quality in the Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology and is a leading researcher in the theory and practice of digital writing. She has published extensively about the futures of the book and the impact of digital technology on writing, community activism and the publishing industry. Dr Hancox is the Australian editor of The Writing Platform, and was a Leverhulme Visiting Fellow to the UK and an invited speaker at London Book Fair and Books in Browsers San Francisco. She has been named a 2017 Queensland Smithsonian Fellow

Professor Alan Rix is Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the University of Queensland, and has been closely associated with the University’s engagement with the QLA. He is a political scientist by training and a specialist on Japanese affairs, and was formerly Executive Dean of the Faculty of Arts at UQ. He grew up in Sydney but has lived in Brisbane for over 30 years, and counts himself as a Queenslander.

Luke Stegemann is a writer, editor and Hispanist based in south-east Queensland. He has worked in media, publishing and higher education in Australia, Europe and Asia, including 15 years in Spain. He was formerly the editorial manager of The Adelaide Review, founding editor of The Melbourne Review, and associate publisher of Griffith Review.

The University of Queensland Fiction Book Award

Jane (Brumfield) Edwards is recognised as one of Australia’s leading businesswomen with a distinguished professional career spanning more than 35 years. Jane founded and directs the much-awarded national BBS Communications Group and is appointed to numerous government and business boards. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD), the Australian Institute of Management (AIM) and the Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA). Since the year 2000, Jane has served as the Honorary Consul for France in Queensland. A former Canberra journalist, Jane is a specialist in issues and reputation management. Her firm has pioneered and set the pace for communications consultancy practice since its inception in 1989 working particularly in construction and master planned communities, health and medical services, tertiary education and with professional services firms.

Phil Brown is a Brisbane author and poet. His memoirs Travels with My Angst and Any Guru Will Do were published by UQP. He is the Arts Editor of The Courier-Mail newspaper.

Emeritus Professor Manfred Jurgensen is a novelist and poet, the author of over 60 literary and academic works in various languages. Manfred Jurgensen's latest publication is The River. Love Songs of an Alien Son. He is at present on a Humboldt Fellowship at the University of Berlin. His biography, Three Suns I Saw, appeared in 2015 (edited by U. Fischer).

Fiona is the co-owner of Brisbane’s award-winning bookshops, Avid Reader and Where the Wild Things Are. She has been a judge for the Vogel Award, the Stella Award and the Queensland Literary Awards. Fiona has been presented with the Johnno Award for services to the Queensland writing community and in 2014 the Australian Booksellers Associated made her a life member.

The University of Queensland Non-Fiction Book Award

Mary Philip has been reviewing and judging books for twenty-five years. She is a passionate reader with wide-ranging interests. For five years she facilitated bookclubs at Riverbend Books, and helped deepen readers’ capacity to enjoy and critically evaluate books.

Ian Lowe AO is Emeritus Professor of Science, Technology and Society at Griffith University. He is a widely published author and has filled many advisory roles to all levels of government. He chaired the advisory group that produced the first independent national report on the state of the environment. He received in 2000 the Prime Minister's environmental award for outstanding individual achievement and the Queensland Millennium Award for excellence in science.

Professor Philip Neilsen is the author or editor of 15 books, including scholarly texts, fiction, non-fiction and poetry, and his work has been translated into Chinese, German, Korean and Serbian. He currently teaches creative writing at the University of Queensland and QUT. He is a former member of the Literature Board and chair of the Queensland Writers Centre. His next book is a collection of poetry with University of Western Australia Publishing, forthcoming in February 2018.

Marg O’Donnell is currently Chair of SANE Australia. She also mentors a number of senior executives. She is a former Director General of 3 QLD Government Departments; Fair Trading, Aboriginal Affairs and the Arts. She has served as Chair on a number of Boards: Australian Festival Of Chamber Music, Breast Cancer Network of Australia; Legal Aid QLD and Griffith University Law School Visiting Committee.

Griffith University Children's Book Award

JOY LAWN (Chair)
Joy Lawn reviews young adult literature for The Weekend Australian. Her reviews have also appeared in ABR, Books+Publishing and SMH. Joy loves moderating sessions at the Brisbane Writers Festival.
She blogs about literary fiction, young adult and children’s literature at http://blog.boomerangbooks.com.au/author/jlawn
She is fascinated by ideas and images and how authors and illustrators express these with truth and originality.

Queensland Teacher Librarian of the Year Megan Daley is passionate about children’s literature and sharing it with young and old alike. Megan is a Teacher Librarian at St Aidan's Anglican Girls School. She is a former National Vice President of the Children's Book Council of Australia, an editor for the Ipswich District Teacher Librarian Network Book Week publication and writes a monthly column in Kidspot. She blogs about all things literary, library and tech at http://www.childrensbooksdaily.com

Mia Macrossan started her professional life in children’s literature as an editor for Scholastic in the UK and has also worked as a teacher and a teacher-librarian. She is currently the President of the Queensland Branch of the Children’s Book Council of Australia. Mia was a judge for the Children’s Book Council Book of the Year Awards, and the Writelinks short story competition for emerging writers for children. She reviews for Magpies, Reading Time and on 4MBS Classic FM radio. She is also the convener of the Last Tuesday Book Club for adults interested in talking about children’s books. Mia cannot imagine a time when she is not reading.

Maree Pickering is a librarian by profession who started her career in the State Library of Queensland in children and young adult library services. After a long career in information management and research services across the public sector, she is recently retired but continuing active involvement with children’s literature and various research projects.

Griffith University Young Adult Book Award

Sue Gough has written both young adult and adult fiction and non fiction. She inaugurated the State Library's Young Writers Award and served as Deputy Chair of the Arts Council Literature Board. She mentors for the Australian Society of Authors and holds an M.Phil in Creative Writing.

David Burton is an award-winning Queensland writer. He’s best known for his memoir How to Be Happy, winner of the 2014 Text Prize for Children and Young Adult Fiction. His theatrical work includes St Mary’s In Exile for Queensland Theatre Company, as well as the original musicals Boomtown, Under This Sky and The Power Within for Queensland Music Festival, some of the largest community arts engagement projects in the world. He’s currently undertaking doctoral studies, and is a frequent teacher and speaker for youth across Queensland.

David has been an English teacher for over thirty years and is currently the Head of English at Somerset College, a position he has held since 1999. He is highly respected in the Queensland English teaching community and has served in a number important curriculum roles for the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority, including Gold Coast Panel Chair and State Panel member. For many years David assisted in the running of the Somerset National Novella Writing Competition, one of Australia’s most significant literary competitions for adolescent writers.

Jean Yates is a Senior English teacher with a passion for encouraging young people to connect with authors and reading. She was the Director of the annual Somerset Celebration of Literature for five years and works in a freelance capacity with schools and a number of publishers providing advice and writing teachers notes.

University of Southern Queensland History Book Award

Since graduating with First Class Honours in History from the University of Queensland, Helen Gregory has been a tutor and researcher at the university. Specialising in the social history of Queensland and Brisbane, she has written several commissioned histories, many articles for various historical journals and researched historical backgrounds for major museum exhibitions.

Libby Connors is associate professor of history at the University of Southern Queensland. She is an author and co-author of several works on Australian history. Her book Warrior (Allen & Unwin 2015) won the QLA prize for a Work of State Significance, the Magarey Medal for Biography and the 2016 prize for Legal History from the Australian and New Zealand Law and History Society.

Dr Geoff Ginn is Senior Lecturer (History) in the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry at the University of Queensland. He was a Chevening Scholar to the UK in 1995-96, and a Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Historical Research, University of London (2014). He has served on the boards of the State Library of Queensland and the Queensland Museum (2005-2013), and is presently Chair of the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology. His second book Culture, Philanthropy and the Poor in Late-Victorian London was published in the UK and the US by Routledge in May 2017.

QUT Digital Literature Award

Simon Groth is a writer, editor, and director of if:book Australia, a leading developer of experimental publishing and exploration. His books include Off The Record: 25 Years of Music Street Press and Hunted Down and Other Tales and his short fiction has been published in Australia and the United States. Simon’s work and reporting on digital publishing has seen him travel the globe to discuss and explore the challenges and opportunities for writers and readers in a digital world.

Chris Meade is a writer and founder of if:book uk, a charitable company exploring digital possibilities for literature. Currently completing a practice-based PhD in Digital Writing at Bath Spa University on Nearlywriting Nearlyology, Chris performs his songs with the Ifso Band and in 2015 became a member of Academy Inegales, an ensemble of improvisers. Previously he has been Director of Booktrust and The Poetry Society. if:book supports the New Media Writing Prize, the Dot Award for Digital Literature and runs The Ifso Press, making collaborative and transmedia fiction. www.ifbook.co.uk, www.nearlyology.net, www.ifsopress.com

TL Uglow is a contemporary writer and speaker on innovation and digital futures. Tea leads part of Google’s Creative Lab specialising in work with cultural organisations, artists, writers, and producers on experiments using digital technology at the boundaries of traditional cultural practice - across theatre, literature, history, cinema, music, science and the circus.

State Library of Queensland Poetry Collection – Judith Wright Calanthe Award

Bronwyn Lea is an author and academic specialising in contemporary literature and creative writing at the University of Queensland. She is currently poetry editor at Meanjin and her most recent collection of poems is The Deep North (George Braziller 2012).

Nathan Shepherdson is the author of five books of poetry. He has won a number of awards including the Arts Queensland Thomas Shapcott Poetry Prize, The Josephine Ulrick Poetry Prize and the Newcastle Poetry Prize. In September 2016 he read at the Voci Lontane, Voci Sorelle International Poetry Festival in Florence. He is the son of the painter Gordon Shepherdson.

MTC Cronin has published twenty books (poetry, prose poems and essays). Recent collections include in possession of loss (Shearsman Books, 2014) and The Law of Poetry (Puncher & Wattmann, 2015), the latter of which was written over two decades.

University of Southern Queensland Short Story Collection – Steele Rudd Award

Krissy Kneen is the award winning author of the memoir Affection, the novels Steeplechase, Triptych, The Adventures of Holly White and the Incredible Sex Machine, and the Thomas Shapcott Award winning poetry collection Eating My Grandmother. Her latest novel is An Uncertain Grace. She has written and directed broadcast documentaries for SBS and ABC television.

Dr Nike Sulway is a writer and academic. Her fiction publications include the novels Dying in the First Person, Rupetta, The Bone Flute, The True Green of Hope, and the children’s book What The Sky Knows. Her works have won or been shortlisted for a range of national and international awards, including the Tiptree Award, the QLD Premier’s Literary Award, the Commonwealth Writers Award, the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s Book of the Year Awards, the IAFA Crawford Award, the Aurealis Awards and the Norma K Hemming Award. She is also the author of a number of published and forthcoming essays on contemporary writers and writing, including essays on Lyn Palmer, Sarah Waters, Barbara Newhall Follett and James Tiptree, Jr. Nike is a contributing co-editor of the forthcoming special issue of TEXT on Australasian Fairy Tales, and of an edited collection of essays on speculative biography Forgotten Lives: Recovering Lost histories through fact and fiction (Cambridge Scholarly Publishing).

Khalid Warsame is a writer, editor, and arts-worker. He is a Creative Producer at Footscray Community Arts Centre, Fiction Editor for the Lifted Brow, and Co-Director of the National Young Writers Festival. His short fiction and essays have appeared in a number of publications, and he was recently awarded a Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowship.