Should literary prizewinnings be shared among the shortlist?

Should the winner take it all?

This year’s Miles Franklin award-winner has recently been announced, with the winner Shankari Chandran, taking home the pot of gold, worth $60,000, with the other five authors on the short list awarded $5000 each.

The Stella Prize also grants the winner $60,000, with $5000 each to the shortlistees and $1000 each to the longlistees. The Prime Minster’s Award and the Nib Award are two other organisations that offer a cash prize to shortlisted titles. However, many other literary competitions in the country – including all the State Premiers’ Awards – only allocate money to the overall winner, leaving the runners-up with nothing more than bragging rights to include on their resumé and grant application forms.

Unlock Padlock Icon

Unlock this content?

Access this content and more

Thuy On is Reviews Editor of ArtsHub and an arts journalist, critic and poet who’s written for a range of publications including The Guardian, The Saturday Paper, Sydney Review of Books, The Australian, The Age/SMH and Australian Book Review. She was the books editor of The Big issue for 8 years. Her first book, a collection of poetry called Turbulence, came out in 2020 and was published by University of Western Australia Press (UWAP). Her next collection, Decadence, was published in July 2022, also by UWAP. Twitter: @thuy_on