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Hachette Australia, the Emerging Writers’ Festival (EWF) and our media partner Guardian Australia are thrilled to announce the shortlist for the 2017 Richell Prize for emerging writers.


The five shortlisted writers and their works are:

‘As I Am’ by Michelle Barraclough

‘State Highway One’ by Sam Coley

‘Triptych’ by Julie Keys

‘Waiting for the Sun’ by Miranda Debeljakovic

‘Where the Fruit Falls’ by Karen Wyld


The longlist, chosen from 579 entries, was announced in August.

The judges have commented on the wonderful breadth of talent in the shortlist:

‘From sibling relationships to struggling with grief, sexual awakenings and family secrets to a bohemian artist’s life in 1920s Australia – this shortlist is diverse and exciting. It speaks to the wonderful new voices just waiting to be uncovered out there – and to the truly exciting stories readers can expect to treasure in the years to come.’

Hachette launched the Richell Prize in 2015 with EWF and the Guardian Australia. The award is in memory of former Hachette CEO Matt Richell, who died in 2014.

Applicants were required to submit the first three chapters and a synopsis of their proposed work of adult fiction or narrative nonfiction, with the winner to receive $10,000 and mentoring from a Hachette publisher to help develop the work to publication.

The winner will be announced on November 1st at a ceremony in Sydney.

The judges for 2017 are bestselling author Hannah Richell, EWF director Izzy Roberts-Orr, Sydney bookseller Amelia Lush and Hachette publisher Robert Watkins.

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