This week the shortlist for the 2018 ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize was unveiled to the public, with Claire Aman (NSW), Sharmini Aphrodite (Singapore) & Madelaine Lucas (NSW/USA) each getting the nod. This year the prize attracted almost 1,200 entries from writers from across the globe. The winning author will receive $7,000, whilst the shortlisted stories will also appear in the August Fiction issue of the Australian Book Review.... Read More | Share it now!
It is rare these days that a complete collection of short stories can sustain a sense of breathless wonder throughout each and every piece included in its pages. In a modern age of mobile phones and social media, short stories present us with an interesting challenge. While they are short enough to cater to our decreasing attention spans, they require us to surrender ourselves completely, and trust in the author’s ability to take us to a place of deep connection with a human moment. They ask us to work at deciphering meaning, to play with language and form, to oftentimes forgo the traditional patterns of narrative. Short stories- good short stories- ask that the reader engage with them on multiple levels. And because of the extra work that is required to appreciate them, all too frequently, the anthology is a genre that gets overlooked. But in the Australian short story scene, exciting things are happening, and I believe that Claire Aman’s debut collection Bird Country is one of them.... Read More | Share it now!