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KSP's 2017 Competition Winners

It was a beautiful hot summer day last Sunday for Katharine's Birthday celebrations, where we paid tribute to our namesake and presented KSP's 2017 competition awards. Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks to all those who entered. We received a high number of entries again this year, so the competition was fierce. Big thanks to Bendigo Bank Mundaring, the Shire of Mundaring and Flora Smith for sponsoring these awards.


Winner: Matthew Day from Sawyers Valley Primary School

Runner-Up: Xavier Wright from Helena College

KSP POETRY AWARDS 2017 (National)

Judge: John Kinsella. Read judge's report here.

Australian John Kinsella has written over 20 books of poetry, as well as plays and fiction; he also maintains an active literary career as a teacher and editor. Kinsella’s poetry is both experimental and pastoral, featuring the landscape of Western Australia. Paul Kane observed in World Literature Today, “In Kinsella’s poetry these are lands marked by isolation and mundane violence and by a terrible transcendent beauty.” His The New Arcadia (2007) is a book-length exploration of Western Australia’s timeless and timeworn landscape; the book is informed by the history of the country and the anti-bucolic. Kinsella’s recent books of poetry include Firebreaks (2016) and Drowning in Wheat: Selected Poems (2016).

Open Section

First Place: ‘figue’ by Kevin Gillam, WA

Second Place: ‘at the end of the road is country’ by Scott-Patrick Mitchell, WA

Joint Second Place: ‘First Blood: A Sestina’ by Natalie D-Napoleon, USA​

Special Commendation: 'deus ex machina’ by Kathleen Dzubiel, WA​

Commended ‘Transnational’ by Josephine Clarke, WA ‘Wild Ducks’ by Julie Watts, WA 'Moth Words’ by Kevin Gillam, WA ‘The First Drug’ by Natalie D-Napoleon, USA

Annette Cameron Encouragement Award for an Unpublished WA Poet

First: ‘Attempts at containment’ by Helen Thurloe

Commended: ‘Bindings’ by Katie Mills and ‘Domestic lepidoptery’ by Helen Thurloe

Youth Section

First Place: 'Otello Cabaletta’ by Yanika O'Brien, WA

Second Place: ‘Fire Ecology’ by Connor Brown, WA

Joint Second Place: ‘The Smoky Lens’ by Liam Howe, WA​


‘8/10’ by Kate Benjamin, VIC ‘Yatting the Crumming’ by Hugo Borbilas, NSW ​

Bendigo Bank Encouragement Award for Under 14s: ‘Not yet’ by Damya Wijesekera, NSW

Highly Commended: ‘La Primavera’ by Natasha Nguyen, NSW

KSP MEMOIR AWARDS 2017 (National)

Judge: Rachel Robertson. Read judge's report here.

Dr Rachel Robertson is a writer and senior lecturer at Curtin University. Her memoir, Reaching One Thousand, was shortlisted for the National Biography Award 2013 and she was winner of the Australian Book Review Calibre Award for Outstanding Essay in 2008. She is the co-editor of Purple Prose, a collection of women’s non-fiction inspired by the colour purple, and her works of memoir and personal essay have been published in Australian and international journals and anthologies. She is currently working on a collection of autobiographical lyric essays.​

Open Section

First Place: The Visit by A.R. Levett, WA

Second Place: Going Home by K.W. George, QLD​

Highly Commended

Scars by Ashleigh Hardcastle, WA On Island by Rachelle Rechichi, WA Into the Heat by Catherine Johnstone, VIC

Youth Section

First Place: A Day in Starvation Bay by Grace Bettison, WA​

Highly Commended

A Day in Walpole by Shannon Hussey, WA A Day in Boranup Forest by Courtney Minto, WA A Day in Subiaco by Jasmin Pradhan, WA


Judge: by Rashida Murphy. Read judge's report here.

Rashida Murphy lives on the west coast of Australia, in its capital city, Perth. She has a PhD in Writing from Edith Cowan University, is the books editor at Cafe Dissensus, Adjunct Lecturer at ECU, and former editor for Westerly. Her debut novel, The Historian’s Daughter, was shortlisted in the 2015 Dundee International Book Prize and published by UWA Publishing in 2016. She has won awards for short fiction and her prose and poetry has been published in Marginata, Westerly, Southern Crossings and Cafe Dissensus as well as anthologies such as We Will Be Shelter and Australian Stories.

Open Section

First Place: 'Daniel, You’re a Star' by Melanie Hall, WA

Second Place: 'The Dumbo Effect' by Suzannah Churchman, WA​


Monologue Woman by Brenda Downing, WA

The Birdwatcher by Christine Johnson, NSW Rain by Rosemary Allan, QLD My mother has a Friend whose Sister was a Bunnygirl by Kathy Prokhovnik, NSW Gelato by Deb Wain, VIC

Youth Section

First Place: ‘Wind' by Jae Brieffies, WA Second Place: 'Lauren Belongs' by Jasmin Pradhan, WA​


I’m not Scared by Grace Bettison, WA Mum by Lara Mathew, WA The Journey Home by Janice Tan, WA​

Mundaring National Young Writers Encouragement Awards for under 14s:

Speechless by Kylie Delanoy, VIC

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