It is our very great pleasure to announce the winner of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs / Australian Short Story Festival Emerging Writers’ Prize. The winner is Ruth Armstrong for ‘Paper Cranes’. AAWP/ASSF are proud to support emerging writers in offering this opportunity for emerging writers.
AAWP/ASSF would like to thank all authors who submitted to the prize. The judges were overwhelmed by the quality and diversity of entries. This made the judging process inordinately challenging.
In a field where we could quite easily have awarded half a dozen first prizes, Paper Cranes distinguishes itself from the remainder of the shortlist through its unwavering focus and effective scene changes, its characters who seem to walk straight out of real life and onto the page, its subtle and mostly unspoken conflicts, and its intelligent imagery. The story is well-paced and restrained when it needs to be, yet never sags; its dialogue rings true, yet avoids the banalities of everyday chitchat; it demonstrates an understanding of classic plot structure, yet remains lively and intriguing. In other words, it does its job. And in doing so, reminds us once again why short stories matter. Congratulations to the author.
About Ruth Armstrong:
Ruth is currently undertaking an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Technology, Sydney, with a focus on short story writing. ‘Paper Cranes’ was short listed for the 2017 Overland Neilma Sidney Short Story Prize. Ruth works as an editor at the health website, www.croakey.org.