Shortlist for the Story Wine Prize

We received around 400 entries for our inaugural Story Wine Prize. The three judges – novelist and Overland contributing editor Clare Strahan, wine writer and critic Campbell Mattinson, and short story writer and novelist Paddy O’Reilly – said they found the stories to be clever and diverse, and of a high standard overall.

After reading all the entries blind, the judges have selected a shortlist of 12 exceptional stories. Winners will be announced toward the end of September. The winning story will receive a $3000 first prize and will be published on the label of a Story Wines Shiraz, as well as in Overland. Two runners-up will each receive $500. The prize will open again in 2015.

Overland and Story Wines are very pleased to announce the first Story Wine Prize shortlist:


StoryWine_LaurenAimee‘I thought maybe I could be a lounge singer’

A would-be lounge singer living in a small town fantasises about heartbreak and finds solace only in the local cinema.

Lauren Aimee Curtis lives and writes in Sydney. Her short fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in The Canary Press, Going Down Swinging, Two Serious Ladies, New World Writing, and both Spineless Wonder’s and The UTS Writers’ anthologies.


Story Wine_Michael Blake‘Parts per million’

A story about concentration.

Michael Blake is a twenty-five-year-old writer living in Hobart, where it’s probably hard to grow rice. He holds no degrees.


Story Wine_Boyack‘Father’

‘Father’ reflects my endeavour to encapsulate the known and the unknown male; the silent information of trait, smell, loneliness, and function the male inherits and needs to act upon.

Born into state care in 1967, married in Las Vegas in 1997, Neil Boyack believes that a working class exists. His stories and poems have been published widely. He is the founder and director of the Newstead Short Story Tattoo.


Story-Wine_Sally_Breen‘6pm Saturday night’

‘6pm Saturday night’ explores how loss, loneliness and love can intermingle in the modern world and how a mother and daughter help each other navigate that emotional maze.

Sally Breen is the author of Atomic City (2013) and The Casuals (2011). Her short fiction has been published widely both here and overseas. She lectures in creative writing at Griffith University and is Fiction Editor of the Griffith REVIEW.


Story Wine_Cahill‘Letter to Margaret Atwood’

The epistolary form in ‘Letter to Margaret Atwood’ is a layered narrative inspired by Atwood’s poetic ironies, her feminist and dystopian themes.

Michelle Cahill writes poetry and fiction. Her collection Vishvarūpa was shortlisted in the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards. Her stories have appeared in Southerly, Antipodes, Etchings, TEXT, Escape, Alien Shores, and she is shortlisted in this year’s Wasafiri New Writing Prize. Her essay on race, ‘Unmasking Whiteness’, is forthcoming in Southerly.


Story Wine_Dominic Carew‘Farewelling time’

A well-liked lawyer faces an existential crisis when Tuesdays start disappearing from his week.

Dominic Carew is a lawyer and writer from Sydney. His fiction has appeared in Seizure Online and Ragnarok, among others. He is currently undertaking his MA in Creative Writing at UTS.


Omar‘Up above’

‘Up above’ is a short story about loss.

Omar J Sakr is an Arab-Australian writer and poet with a Creative Writing MA from the University of Sydney. His poetry has featured in Cordite Poetry Review, ABC’s The Drum, and is forthcoming in Meanjin and Carve Magazine. His short fiction was also showcased in the Twitter Fiction Festival.


Story Wine_Leah Swann‘That inward eye’

‘That inward eye’ is a stream-of-consciousness story written in a single sentence, where a woman accused of having no ambition feels consoled by the power of her imagination.

Leah Swann is the author of the story collection Bearings, and The Ragnor Trilogy, a series of fantasy novels for children. Her work’s published in Best Australian Short Stories, The World to Come, Review of Australian Fiction, Award Winning Australian Writing, and page seventeen.


Story Wine_Rhys Tate 250‘Fishing’

Boy meets girl. Boy mugs girl. But girl has bigger fish to fry.

Rhys Tate is a regional writer, teacher and editor who was last published in The Great Unknown (Spineless Wonders).


Story Wine_van luyn small‘The outer planets’

Maris decides to divorce Felix when he tells her he was beamed up by aliens.

Ariella Van Luyn is a creative writer and lecturer in writing in Townsville, North Queensland. Her stories have appeared in Voiceworks, The Lifted Brow, Lip Magazine and Riptide. Her manuscript, Hidden Objects, was shortlisted for the 2012 Queensland Literary Awards.


New Image‘Endangered’

A lover leaves, a railway arrives and Johnny and his inner suburban tribe in 1970’s Sydney are blurring into their own twilight zone.

Roger Vickery is a Sydney-based writer. He has won several awards for fiction and poetry. Recent wins include the Ned Kelly Crime Short Story Prize (2013) and the Bruce Dawe Poetry Award (2013). His work has appeared in literary magazines, anthologies, websites and major newspapers in Australia and overseas.


Story Wine_Michelle Wright‘Moon shiny night’

‘Moon shiny night’ is about two teenage girls spending a hot Easter weekend in a holiday house by the beach, and the old man named Taffy who lives next door.

Michelle Wright lives in Eltham and writes short stories and flash fiction. She’s won the Age, Alan Marshall and Grace Marion Wilson Short Story Prizes, come second in the Bridport prize and was awarded the 2013 Writers Victoria Templeberg Residential Writing Fellowship. She’s passionate about languages, literature, science and sanitation.

Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places.

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