Huge congratulations to Fremantle writer Molly Schmidt, winner of the 2022 City of Fremantle Hungerford Award! Molly takes home a cash prize of $25,000, and her winning novel, Salt River Road, will be published by Fremantle Press.
Fremantle Press publisher and Hungerford judge Georgia Richter described Salt River Road, a coming-of-age story set in regional Western Australia in the 1970s, as a novel that ‘focuses on the fabric of small-town life, and the complexity of family and community relationships.’
Molly Schmidt said:
I wrote this story in consultation with Noongar Elders from the Albany area and I am so grateful for their time and friendship. I hope Salt River Road can become a poignant example of the possibilities of cross-culture collaboration.
The 90 manuscripts submitted for this year’s award were read by Rashida Murphy, former Hungerford winner Natasha Lester and long-time Hungerford judge Richard Rossiter. They reported that the writers who stood out were those who
combined a natural affinity with words alongside an understanding that their story needs to appeal to a reader, which meant that they had honed and edited and shaped their work, thus setting their manuscripts apart from the others that felt less fully realised and needed more time, development and writerly sweat to be successful.
Congratulations must also go to the other shortlisted authors:
- Joy Kilian-Essert, The Slow Patience of the Sea
- Gerard McCann, Tell Me the Story
- Marie O’Rourke, Kintsugi
The longlist included Matthew Chrulew, Narelle Hill, Rachael Keene, Shannon Meyerkort, Stefanie Koens, Christine Talbot and Annie Wilson.
The award is sponsored by the City of Fremantle and Fremantle Press.