The Writing Life

Information, inspiration and insights into the writing life

Composite image of the 2020 Prize shortlisted writers

On Thursday 26 November, 7pm to 7.45pm (AEDT), the 2020 Deborah Cass Prize winner will be announced at an online Award Ceremony featuring guest speaker Philippe Sands. Philippe Sands is a lawyer and Baille Gifford prize-winning writer. His current book is 'The Ratline: Love, Lies and Justice on the Trail of a Nazi Fugitive'.

The event, hosted by Elly Varrenti, writer, broadcaster and columnist, will include contributions from writer Rafeif Ismail, 2017 Deborah Cass Prize winner, and writer and judge Lee Kofman, who will present this year’s winner.

Author Tobias McCorkell spent the first 25 years of his life in Coburg, Melbourne. He has taught creative writing at the University of Melbourne and has authored works of non-fiction. In 2018 he appeared at the Melbourne Emerging Writer’s Festival. He is the recipient of a 2019 Varuna Residency Fellowship. ‘Everything in its Right Place’ is his first novel.

For all lovers of the written word, there’s nothing more exciting than picking up a thick novel and knowing you’ll soon be lost in its rich descriptions and suspenseful narrative. But have you ever wondered how good the story would be if the author had to condense it into just one page?!? 

Chris Flynn is the author of ‘The Glass Kingdom’ and ‘A Tiger in Eden’, which was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize. His fiction and non-fiction have appeared in The Age, The Australian, Griffith Review, Meanjin, Australian Book Review, The Saturday Paper, Smith Journal, The Big Issue, Monster Children, McSweeney’s and many other publications. He has conducted interviews for The Paris Review and is a regular presenter at literary festivals across Australia.

Jacinta Parsons

Jacinta Parsons is a broadcaster, radio maker, writer, and public speaker. She currently hosts Afternoons on ABC Melbourne delivering a popular mix of art, culture and ideas. She began her radio-life in community radio over a decade ago but her peak Melbourne moment came earlier, when she worked as a tram conductor (proudly wearing one of the last of the Connie’s green uniforms). Jacinta has lived with Crohn’s disease for over 20 years and is an ambassador for the Crohn’s and Colitis Association.

Maria Tumarkin

The State of the (Writing) Nation is an annual address from a prominent Australian writer. It's a chance to reflect on what's happening, and where we're heading, in Australian literature and publishing. 

This year, Maria Tumarkin will give the address. Tumarkin is the author of four books, including the multi-award-winning creative non-fiction work, 'Axiomatic', and is a recipient of the prestigious 2020 Windham Campbell Prize. 

Deborah Cass Prize logo

Now in its sixth year, the Deborah Cass Writing Prize is pleased to announce the 2020 shortlist of ten works by emerging writers from a migrant background. In a brief statement, the shortlisting judges said that once again they were moved and impressed by the quality of the stories.

Jane Harrison and Jannali Jones

Jannali Jones is a Krowathunkoolong woman of the Gunai nation. She is the author of ‘My Father’s Shadow’, published by Magabala Books. Jannali holds a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Technology, Sydney. She was the winner of the 2015 black&write! Indigenous Writing Fellowship and in 2013 was an inaugural recipient of Magabala’s Australian Indigenous Creator Scholarship. Her short stories and poetry have been published in Australia and overseas, including in ‘Overland’, ‘Southerly’, ‘The Review of Australian Fiction’ and ‘Westerly’.

It's a particularly tough time for writers who have had new books released, with the cancellation of book launches, author tours, and other appearances such as writers festivals. Writers Victoria is helping to get the word out about books published by our members during this time with our #WVMemberBooks initiative – we're posting these books on our social media channels and here with information about the books and links through to where you can buy them to support the author.

At Writers Victoria, October means our annual Subscriberthon!