Over 1000 creative writers entered the annual Boroondara Literary Awards. The winners celebrated at the presentation ceremony at Hawthorn Arts Centre on Thursday 24 November 2016.

Now in its 18th year, the awards receive submissions from all over Australia. Many rural Australian themes featured in the Open Short Story competition.

First prize, judged by Eliza Henry-Jones, was The Shepherd, by Janet Lee. The Keith Carroll Award (named after Keith Carroll of the Rotary Club of Balwyn, who was instrumental in initiating the Boroondara Literary Awards in 1999) for the best Boroondara entry was presented to Emma Cayley for Bearings.

Second and third prizes in the Open short Story competition were awarded to Susi Fox for Premium Brand and Kate Ryan for Love Letters, respectively. An important feature of the Boroondara Literary Awards is the Writers in Schools program.

The program gives schools the opportunity to invite well-known authors to conduct workshops and expose students to new writing techniques and skills. It is encouraging that three of this year’s Young Writers’ prize winners were from schools that participated in the program.

Winners for the Young Writers’ competition were chosen for each age group by Emilie Zoey Baker, who judged the Poetry category and Jane Godwin, who judged the Prose category. We received the largest ever number of entries in the Young Writers’ competition, with a significant rise in poetry entries in the Junior category.

First prizes for poetry were awarded to:

  • Junior: Isobel Gilbert from Kew Primary School for Come From
  • Middle: Olivia Johnson from Fintona Girls’ School for an untitled piece
  • Senior: Samuel Hughes from Carey Baptist Grammar School for his poem Our Mother (who also received Third prize for Travel Torn Hearts).

First prizes for prose were awarded to:

  • Junior: Angelina Liu from Boroondara Park Primary School for Some Day
  • Middle: Melanie Clarke from Ruyton Girls’ School for Ocean Eyes
  • Senior: Catherine Zhou from Balwyn High School for Breakfast.

Made possible by the important partnership between the Rotary Club of Balwyn and Council, the awards continue to encourage creativity by young writers and poets who live, study or work in the City of Boroondara.

If you’d like to read the stories and poems from this year’s awards, pick up your very own copy of the Boroondara Literary Awards Anthology 2016 for $15 at any Boroondara library.

See Boroondara Literary Awards for more information.