John Marsden prize, 2012 4 Comments

John Marsden prize, 2012

Express Media and John Marsden are pleased to announce that entries are now open for Australia’s foremost literary competition for young writers, The 2012 John Marsden Prize for Young Australian Writers.

The prize is facilitated by Express Media and generously funded by celebrated author John Marsden, author of the Tomorrow When the War Began series. Young writers under the age of 25 are urged to enter the competition to share in $5,500 in prize money and have the opportunity to be published online and in the December issue of Voiceworks, Express Media’s literary quarterly.

The prize, now in its eighth year, is not only monetary – it has also served as an important stepping stone for a myriad of young wordsmiths and poets. Check out some of our past winners and placegetters here:

Bryce Wolfgang Joiner – has become a regular contributor to The Lifted Brow, and is now looking to make a short film, Hypochlorite.

Chloe Wilson – has since published a poetry book The Mermaid Problem with the Australian Poetry Centre, which was commended in the 2010 Anne Elder Award.

Josephine Rowe – has since appeared in an array of publications, including Meanjin, Overland, ABR and Dumbo Feather (check out the full list here). She has also published two collections of short stories, how a moth becomes a boat (2009) and Tarcutta Wake (2012).

The first place winner of the Short Story prize will receive $3000 (18-24) and the winner of the poetry prize wins $1500 (18-24). First place winners of both the Poetry and the Short story prize (under 18) receive $500 each.

Last year’s winner of the section Short story or first chapter of a novel (18-24 years old) was Madeleine Griffeth. Here’s what she had to say:

‘The John Marsden Prize for Young Australian Writers was a significant moment of validation for me as a writer. As a twenty-something negotiating an arts degree, part-time work, and the looming necessity to commit to a job that’s going to pay the bills, it was immensely gratifying to be recognised for the work that is done with little thought of profit or reward, but toiled over in hours snatched here and there. Since winning the Prize in 2011 I’ve had opportunities to make connections with emerging writers further down the track in their careers that I am, and I’m beginning to see that with commitment and a measure of hard graft, it is possible to fit writing into the picture of Real Life that I’m gradually assembling for myself.’

Winners are judged by Express Media and John Marsden.

Entry forms are available for download by clicking here (PDF 231k).

For more information, contact Ruby Mahoney at or (03) 9094 7890.

Entries close 5pm Monday September 3.

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