Posted by: Lisa Hill | September 9, 2019

2019 Richell Prize for Emerging Writers Longlist


Update 7/10/19 The shortlist has been announced.  I’ve highlighted the six writers in bold below.

Hachette Australia and the Emerging Writers’ Festival (EWF) have announced the longlist for the 2019 Richell Prize for Emerging Writers.

Don’t get excited about finding new books to read, not yet. This is a competition for proposed works of fiction or non fiction.  Entrants in the competition had to submit the first three chapters and a synopsis of a proposed work of adult fiction or narrative nonfiction.  So these longlisted works have been judged to have potential.  (But there is no indication as to whether the works are fiction or non-fiction, genre fiction or LitFic; and I also couldn’t find out exactly what the criteria are for an ’emerging writer’.)

The winner receives $10,000 and a 12-month mentorship from a Hachette publisher to help develop the work to publication.  Hachette also has first option on the shortlisted works as well. The Guardian newspaper will publish an extract and do a profile on the winning writer so this is a prize well worth winning.

The nominees are:

Sarah Fiddelaers, Where the Lost Boys Go
Tee Linden, The Nameless
Sara El Sayed, The Blind Pussy Cat
Sunil Badami, An Allergy
Ruby Todd, The Counterpart
Allee Richards, In Real Life
Delila Bevan Zavadsky, Thawed Waters
Yannick Thoraval, White Foam
January Gilchrist, The Lady Detective
Ayla Black, The Earth Starts Talking
Simon Robertson, The Reset
Else Fitzgerald, Nearly Curtains
Josiah Slough, Capstone
Kylie Orr, The Fundraiser
Justin Hamilton, The Ultimate
Heather James, The Inlet
Christine Kearney, The Book of Eels
Jacqueline Winn, The Glorious Madness
Lauren Draper, We’ll Meet Again
Jennifer Carlisle, The Ultimate’s Sister
Daniel Ryan, The City’s Heart

It’s pleasing to see that Australia’s multicultural mix is indicated by the cultural diversity of these names.

The shortlist will be announced on October 7th, and the winner on November 8th.

Thanks to Booksellers & Publishers for the tweet that alerted me to this, and to the EWF festival for hosting the webpage with more information. See here.


  1. These awards are always tricky for readers aren’t they, because the names are all new to us. It’s very exciting for the writers, though, I know. Every bit of feedback, like longlisting for an award, provides such encouragement.


    • It’s exciting to think that one of these names might turn out to be the next Thea Astley or Elizabeth Jolley:)


  2. Hey Lisa!

    Thanks for publishing the list. I am one of the ecstatic authors who made the longlist of the Richell Prize this year!

    Just to clarify – entry is open to unpublished writers of adult fiction and adult narrative non-fiction. There’s also a great FAQs page that answers some of those trickier questions about eligibility.


    Thanks for passionately supporting Aus and NZ literature :)




  3. Congratulations, Kylie, and thank you for taking the time to clarify the rules:)
    I think that means that entrants can have published a short story in a magazine or anthology, as long as it was in, say,+ a university collection of student work, or one published by a community writing group. But not if it was published by a magazine like Meanjin or the Griffith Review?


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