Shortlist Announced | 2022 Chief Minister’s NT Book Awards
Since 2009, the Chief Minister’s NT Book Awards have been celebrating excellence in writing across the Northern Territory and with thanks to the Northern Territory Government and the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund, we’re excited to announce the shortlist for best fiction, nonfiction and children’s/young adult categories for 2020-2022.
Each category winner will receive $10,000 in prize money, with all shortlisted entries taking home $1000. This year’s judges Marie Munkara, Leonie Norrington and Leni Shilton said there were incredibly strong contenders in each category and that creating a shortlist from such a high standard of works was a difficult task.
“In addition to the strong voices in both English and First Nations languages, the subjects were broad and tackled a number of substantial topics with great insight. These topics included personal, cultural, environmental and family issues,” they noted.
Shortlisted in the category of fiction, in any form or genre including prose or poetry, are three outstanding works, including: Cusp by Mary Anne Butler, an exploration of moral dilemma’s faced by four young Territorians that judges say is “stunning, tight like a punch”; The Curlew’s Eye by Karen Manton, described as a work of fiction that is “told with freshness and intensity that keeps the reader fully engaged, with vivid descriptions”; and Return to Dust by Dani Powell, “a journey through the many layers and inseparable elements of life and death in remote Indigenous Australia.”
The nonfiction shortlist comprises of a powerful work that explores a group of peace warrior protests at Pine Gap and their court experiences – Kieran Finnane’s Peace Crimes: Pine Gap, national security and dissent. Alongside this is a thoroughly researched and insightful biography of two pioneers of Australia’s history, Into the Loneliness: The unholy alliance of Ernestine Hill and Daisy Bates by Eleanor Hogan; with Kanakiya Myra Ah Chee’s book Nomad Girl joining the shortlist for a work that judges say intricately “draws together the pieces of history that were part of the shattering of colonisation.”
Three books have been shortlisted in the category of children’s and/or young adult works, including Storm Warning, a dystopian post-apocalyptic graphic novel by Lauren Boyle and illustrator Alyssa Mason; The River by Sally Morgan and Johnny Warrkatja Malibirr, described by judges as an important moment in literature which celebrates the traditional Top End fine art style with illustration; and Tjanimaku Tjukurpa: How one young man came good, “a work of great wisdom” by the NPY Women’s Council Uti Kulintjaku Watiku (Men’s) Group with illustrator, Jan Bauer. A special mention also goes to Maureen Jipiyiliya Nampijinpa O’Keefe and Christina Booth for their stunning book Mum’s Elephant, described as “seriously entertaining” by the judges.
The Chief Minister NT Book Awards shines a light on the talent, originality, and flair of writers in the NT and shares this with interstate readers.
Of the announcement, Chief Minister Natasha Fyles made the following statement:
“The Territory Labor Government is proud to support and celebrate the talent and diversity represented by this remarkable shortlist of Northern Territory authors. Their books highlight the cultural richness of contemporary Territory literature.”
Fellow supporter of the Awards, Copyright Agency CEO Josephine Johnston stated:
“The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund is proud to support the Chief Minister’s NT Book Awards for the first time. Australia has a thriving and diverse literary culture and these awards recognise and reward extraordinary writing as well as helping to find new audiences. Congratulations, everyone!”
The winners will be announced at an Award Ceremony on Wednesday 22 June as part of the 2022 NT Writers Festival. To RSVP Click Here.
Media contact: Rachael McGuirk 0422 036 911 | email@example.com