Australian Women Writers’ Challenge

awwbadge_2013For the last couple of years I’ve been keeping track of the gender statistics of my reading, and (surprise! surprise!) have realised I read many more books by men than by women. I’ve just discovered the Australian Women Writers’ Challenge and signed up for the Miles level of the challenge, which means I undertake to read six books by Australian women and review four of them (though as I normally review every book I read, defining ‘review’ very loosely, that’s not a big deal). The challenge webpage suggests that I tell you the six books I plan to read, but I’m going to leave it vague. The first one will probably be Favel Parrett’s Past the Shallows, but who knows what might happen before I pick it up.

5 responses to “Australian Women Writers’ Challenge

  1. Oh good for you Jonathan … and welcome to the challenge. I look forward to your reviews and hope you enjoy taking part (and, of course, what you read to take part!)


  2. You’ve sent me to my book-shelf, Jonathan. Statistics can be interesting, revelatory: An Australian anthology (reflective text) I edited for OUP in Melbourne – “Made in Australia” – published in 1990: 82 individual selections (poetry, prose, extracts, articles) 36 by males; 46 by females (among which total – 17 pieces from Indigenous writers). Used in schools though probably long since disappeared (during all those years I was in Japan)! In a companion volume (anthology only – OUP 1990) “An Arc of Australian Voices” – there were 44 separate titles – 38 writers – 21 titles by females 24 by males (one of the titles a joint effort: ABDULLAH & MATHEW “Grandfather Tiger”).


  3. I did this challenge last year and it was wonderful. Definitely made me branch out of my comfort zone. I included NZ in my challenge and read Bone People by Keri Hulme. If you haven’t read that, you need to. It’s impeccable!


  4. Cassie, I’m glad you mentioned Keri HULME. In 1985 I attended several literary events – speakers being writers – Australian and others (A.D. HOPE, Salman RUSHDIE, et al.) organised by Elizabeth WEBBY. Among whom that year’s Booker Prize winner Keri HULME. So impressive. A mate at the time at Canterbury University was working on a Dictionary of Maori (based on historical principles – a la the OED) – and I was reading Patricia GRACE and Witi IHIMAERA among others at the same time… Just last week tidying my book-shelves – picking up Keri HULME’s book – re-reading some of the newspaper & magazine cuttings I had folded into its pages.


  5. Pingback: The Australian Women Writers challenge 2013 | Emily's Tea Leaves

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