Josephine Wilson, a UWA creative writing graduate, has won the 2017 Miles Franklin Literary Award with her second novel, Extinctions.
The Perth-based author wrote Extinctions as part of her creative writing PhD at UWA under the supervision of Associate Professor Tanya Dalziell.
Josephine, who previously won UWA Publishing's inaugural Dorothy Hewett Award for the novel in manuscript form, said she was incredibly excited and honoured to win the Miles Franklin.
“I was just thrilled to be longlisted and then shortlisted for the Miles Franklin and to be placed among a group of my peers from around Australia,” she said.
“All of those novels are a reflection of the power and strength of Australian writing. So hopefully what the award does is bring in a whole new community of readers, not just to read the books but to follow all the writers that have been longlisted and shortlisted.”
Ms Wilson described Extinctions as being about ‘a grumpy, ageing man disconnected from his family who discovers himself and his community through a process of being thrust into a different situation than the one in which he’d placed himself’.
“Writing the book was like putting together, planning and structuring something almost architectural or engineered; all the different elements needed to fit together,” she said.
Josephine has lectured and taught in the tertiary sector and works as a sessional staff member at Curtin University, where she teaches in the Humanities Honours Program in Creative Writing and in Art and Design History. Her early works included The Geography of Haunted Places with Erin Hefferon, Customs, and Cusp.
The Miles Franklin Literary Award was announced at the State Library of New South Wales in Sydney with the winner receiving $60,000. The other shortlisted books were An Isolated Incident by Emily Maguire, The Last Days of Ava Langdon by Mark O’Flynn, Their Brilliant Careers by Ryan O’Neill, and Waiting by Philip Salom.
Charlotte Guest (UWA Publishing) (+61 8) 6488 3670
David Stacey (UWA Media and PR Manager) (+61 8) 6488 3229 / (+61 4) 32 637 716