Sutherland Shire Literary Competition winners announced

Picture: Shutterstock
Picture: Shutterstock

A collection of prizewinning prose from this year's Sutherland Shire Literary Competition has been published online for residents to peruse from the comfort of their own home.

The 2021 competition attracted more than 400 submissions, with Sutherland Shire entrants representing 27 per cent of the overall nationwide entrants.

Major prizes of $1000 and $500 have been awarded to the top entrants across competition categories of Rhyming Poetry, Free Verse Poetry and Short Stories, with winners of the additional Shire Resident's prizes being awarded $500 and $250 in each of the three categories.

Shire mayor Steve Simpson congratulated all who put pen to paper and submitted entries earlier this year.

"I'd like to congratulate all of our entrants to this year's competition, which saw an exciting collection of topics, interests and techniques come to the fore," Cr Simpson said.

"Everyone is a winner in some way, because even those who may not have received a prize have gained valuable experiences by challenging their creative skillsets and tried their hand at participating in a competition which draws competitors from across the country."

Cr Simpson said this year's winners were announced online given the current COVID-19 restrictions.

"It may not be a time where we can come together to celebrate, but it certainly is a great time to extend your reading collections, so I hope our community will join me in celebrating our winners via virtual means and enjoy reading through these superb creative works," heSimpson said.

"I'd like to thank members of the Sutherland Shire Council Literary Competition Sub-committee, councillors Barry Collier, Michael Forshaw and Tom Croucher and our Sutherland Shire Libraries staff for their ongoing encouragement of and commitment to the competition."

Literary Competition sub-committee chair Cr Collier said the 2021 competition has been an outstanding success, attracting quality entries from across Australia whilst showcasing the growing depth and diversity of literary talent within the shire itself.

"Now in its third year, our Literary Competition has been acclaimed by high-profile, independent judges all of whom have expressed support for its continuation well into the future," he said.

"I thank my colleagues councillors Tom Croucher and Michael Forshaw for their strong support of the competition and I commend our outstanding council library staff for their contribution to its success.

"I also thank our generous sponsors - Tradies, Club Central Menai and Moran Aged Care - without whose ongoing support the 2021 Literary Competition would not have been possible in these most difficult of times."

Here are the 2021 Sutherland Shire Literary Competition Winners:

Traditional Verse:

  • 1st Prize: The Difficult Poem, Jennifer Harrison (Melbourne, VIC)
  • 2nd Prize: Ghosts within a Tempest, Kay Gorring (Morayfield, QLD)
  • 1st Shire Resident's Prize: My Cathedral, Jan Motbey (Kurnell, NSW)

Free Verse:

  • 1st Prize: Sunday in Surfers, David Terelinck (Biggera Waters, QLD)
  • 2nd Prize: Home Christmas, Margaret Clark (Riverview, NSW)
  • 1st Shire Resident's Prize: The Housing Commission Flat, Mark Best (Sutherland, NSW)
  • 2nd Shire Resident's Prize: Fragments, Felicity Conneely (Caringbah, NSW)

Short Stories:

  • 1st Prize: The Walkers, Freya Cox (Turner, ACT)
  • 2nd Prize: Hot in Two Ways, Jean Flynn (Ballarat North, VIC)
  • 1st Shire Resident's Prize: Bob's on the Job, Margaret Harris (Gymea Bay, NSW)
  • 2nd Shire Resident's Prize: The Bard of the Bonnet, Henry Lawson, Leone McManus (Como, NSW)
  • Highly Commended: All I Want, Jean Flynn (Ballarat North, VIC)
  • Highly Commended: In the Small House with the Big Walls, Matthew Querzoli (Cronulla, NSW)

The winning entries and judge's comments can be read at: sutherlandshire.nsw.gov.au/literarycompetition.