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It's the 10th anniversary of The Richell Prize!

Meet the talented authors that have either been awarded or offered publishing through The Richell Prize. Our authors chat through their experiences with drafting and submitting, as well as tips and tricks to make your manuscript stand out!

Hi Susannah! Tell us a little about yourself and your relationship with writing.

I’m a GP, so most of my work is information-based and analytical. Writing is a place where I can enjoy creativity and welcome the unexpected.


We’re so excited to read The Deed. How does it feel to have your debut novel releasing this May?

It is incredible. Surreal. For ten years this book was taking shape in my study, and then it took flight.

From submitting to The Richell Prize in 2022 to having The Deed published and on the shelves – it's beyond anything I could have imagined.  


Who are your favourite authors?

Hard question! When I’m writing I read very little. Now I’ve finished The Deed I have so many fabulous novels to catch up on.

These I love: Australian writers: Miles Franklin, Peter Carey, Ruth Park. From other shores: Marilynne Robinson, Annie Dillard, David Sedaris. I’ve just read Lost & Found by Brooke Davis. It’s a beautiful book.


What was your experience with drafting and entering your manuscript into The Richell Prize?

I had entered The Deed into a couple of competitions with no result, so I got serious. I looked up all competitions in Aus. or OS and made a table with their stats: Due date, prize, submission requirements and so on. I set aside three months and made it my job to submit to everything possible.

Drafting and entering my manuscript into The Richell Prize is a bit of a blur amongst all the others, except for one thing worth mentioning.

I nearly didn’t enter The Richell Prize. I didn’t think my manuscript stood a chance. The moral to the story is, you have to submit. It doesn’t matter what you think the outcome will be.


Do you have a favourite aspect of writing?

I love and hate all of it. On writing days, I drag myself to the desk. I make a mental list of all the other things I could be doing. I sharpen my pencil. Literally. And then I start. I might hate it for another hour, but generally after that I’m in.


Can you share any tips and tricks for those entering this year?

Take every part of the submission seriously. Title. Synopsis. Chapter breakdown. 20 000 words. Write it, edit it, rewrite it. Get a writing/editing friend to criticise it. Then write it again.

Biggest tip: submit.

If you submit, no matter what happens, the outcome is good. You’ve sent your work out into the world. Now that you know it’s possible you can do it again. Good luck! 

  • The Deed - Susannah Begbie

    A perceptive and unforgettable debut novel from the 2022 Richell Prize winner that explores the messy, sometimes volatile, complications that only the best and worst of family can bring.

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