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HarperCollins Publishers announces shortlist for the 2019 Banjo Prize

HarperCollins Publishers Australia is thrilled to announce the shortlist for the 2019 Banjo Prize.


Beware of Dogs by Elizabeth Flann

Nina and Pearl by Fleur Glenn

The True Love Story of David Collins and Terra Nullius by Terry Whitebeach


In its second year, The Banjo Prize received 250 entries from around Australia. Catherine Milne, Head of Fiction at HarperCollins, commented about the shortlist:

‘I am, as ever, astounded by the creativity, imagination and dedication of every writer who entered The Banjo Prize – to receive over 250 entries in our second year of offering the prize was overwhelming – and very exciting.  After weeks of dedicated reading and much debate, we finally managed to whittle it down to three manuscripts on the shortlist.  Each of these manuscripts is quite distinct: Beware of Dogs is a strikingly tense female-driven thriller; Nina and Pearl, a delicate, unfolding story of mothering and an ode to the beauty of the natural world; and The True Story of David Collins and Terra Nullius, an intriguing tangle of a love story, a history, a family story. Each one so different, yet each so compelling in its own way.’

HarperCollins Australia launched The Banjo Prize for Australian fiction writers in 2018 in a quest to find Australia’s next great storyteller. The inaugural Banjo Prize was awarded to Tim Slee, whose poignant, sharply funny and uniquely Australian novel Taking Tom Murray Home was published in July this year.

The Banjo is open to all Australian writers of commercial fiction, offering the chance to win a publishing contract with HarperCollins, with an advance of $15,000. Two runners-up will each receive a written assessment of their manuscript from HarperCollins.

Applicants were required to submit a full manuscript of adult commercial fiction, a 500-word synopsis and a 200-word biographical statement.

The winner of the 2019 Banjo Prize will be announced on 17 September 2019.  For more information please visit:


About HarperCollins

HarperCollins Publishers is the second-largest consumer book publisher in the world, with operations in 18 countries. With 200 years of history and more than 120 branded imprints around the world, HarperCollins publishes approximately 10,000 new books every year, in many languages, and has a print and digital catalogue of more than 200,000 titles. Writing across dozens of genres, HarperCollins authors include winners of the Miles Franklin Award, the Nobel Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award and the Man Booker Prize.


August 27, 2019


HarperCollins Publishers announces shortlist for the 2019 Banjo Prize


Alice Wood


[email protected]