Author Tony Birch wins 2017 Patrick White Literary Award
Author Tony Birch wins 2017 Patrick White Literary Award
17 November 2017

Acclaimed author Tony Birch from The University of Queensland Press has received the 2017 Patrick White Literary Award for his contribution to contemporary Australian literature.

UQP – UQ’s publishing arm – has printed four of Mr Birch’s books and UQP Publishing Director Madonna Duffy said the team was proud that his powerful storytelling and cultural contribution has been widely recognised.

Mr Birch is an acclaimed Indigenous academic, poet, short story writer and novelist.

“Tony is the first Indigenous author to win the Patrick White Literary Award,” she said.

“This is significant, given UQP’s longstanding commitment to championing Indigenous voices.

“It’s fitting that one master storyteller be acknowledged by the legacy of another.

“Patrick White’s work told some uncomfortable truths about ourselves and Tony is not afraid to do the same.

“UQP is delighted that Tony Birch’s courage and his talent have been recognised by this very special literary award.”

Mr Birch’s work has received critical acclaim, the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing, and a Miles Franklin Award shortlisting.

He is the inaugural Bruce McGuinness Research Fellow at the Moondani Balluk Centre at Victoria University, published widely in literary magazines and anthologies and a regular guest at writers’ festivals.

Mr Birch received $20,000 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to Australian literature.

Established by prolific Australian author Patrick White with the proceeds from his 1973 Nobel Prize for Literature, the award is now managed by trustees of his philanthropic estate, Perpetual Trust.

Media: Kylie Rathborne,, + 61 7 3346 7932