Now in its 25th year, The My Brother Jack Awards recognise the outstanding literary achievements of people who live, work or study in Glen Eira. From emerging writers to future literary stars, the awards celebrate local talent and the stories that shape our community.
Prizes are awarded for short stories and poetry in the categories of Primary; Junior Secondary; Senior Secondary; and Open.
Short story judges: Eliza Henry-Jones, Annette Trevitt and Angela Meyer
Poetry judges: Alicia Sometimes and Ozlem Baro
- Opened: 9am Wednesday 1 July 2020
- Closed: 5pm, Monday 7 September 2020
- Finalists notified: Tuesday 13 October 2020
- Awards Ceremony: November*
Short story awards
|Category||Word limit||Age group or school year||Prizes|
|Open||3,000 word limit||No age restriction||First prize: $500
Second prize: $300
Third prize: $200
|Senior Secondary School||1,000 word limit||Years 10 to 12||First prize: $250 shopping voucher|
|Junior Secondary School||500 word limit||Years 7 to 9||Prize: $200 shopping voucher|
|Primary School||500 word limit||Years 1 to 6||Prize: $150 shopping voucher|
|Category||Line limit||Age group or school year||Prizes|
60 line limit
|No age restriction||First prize: $500
Second prize: $300
Third prize: $200
|Senior Secondary School||30 line limit||Years 10 to 12||First prize: $250 shopping voucher|
|Junior Secondary School||10 line limit||Years 7 to 9||Prize: $200 shopping voucher|
|Primary School||10 line limit||Years 1 to 6||Prize: $150 shopping voucher|
For its 25th year, the Brother Jack Awards is returning to its literary roots as a celebration of writing excellence in the Glen Eira community. We are very excited about the possibilities and encouragement it will bring to both emerging and more experienced writers in Glen Eira. The photography category will be retired, and we will look for new ways to capture and celebrate the talent of local photographers in the future.
Eliza Henry Jones
Eliza is the author of Ache and In the Quiet and P is for Pearl. Her novels have been shortlisted for the NSW Premier's Literary Awards, the Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction and have been longlisted in the ABIA, Indie and CBCA Awards. Her work has appeared in places such as The Big Issue, The Guardian, The Age and Country Style. She grew up in Glen Eira and now lives on a little farm in the Yarra Valley.
Annette moved from Sydney to Melbourne to study animation and stayed. She teaches fiction writing in professional writing programmes, and has taught non-fiction, script writing and TV comedy. Her short stories have been broadcast on ABC radio and by the BBC and published in literary magazines and anthologies, including Best Australian Stories and in the Fish Anthology in Ireland.
Angela Meyer’s writing has been widely published, including in Best Australian Stories, Island, The Big Issue, The Australian, The Lifted Brow and Kill Your Darlings. A Superior Spectre is her debut novel (Ventura Press, ANZ & Saraband, UK). She has worked in bookstores, as a book reviewer, in a whisky bar, and for the past few years has published a range of Australian authors for Echo Publishing, including award-winners and an international number one bestseller. She lives in Elsternwick.
Alicia is a poet, writer and broadcaster. She has performed her spoken word and poetry at many venues, festivals and events around the world. Her poems have been in Best Australian Science Writing, Best Australian Poems, Overland, Southerly, Meanjin, ABC TV's Sunday Arts and more. She is a member of the ABC’s Outer Sanctum podcast and is often reviewing books on ABC Melbourne. She is director and co-writer of the science-poetry planetarium shows, Elemental and Particle/Wave. Her TedxUQ talk in 2019 was about the passion of combining art with science.
Ozlem Baro is a poet and photographer. She has performed poetry in Australia, Turkey, Guatemala and Cyprus. Her photos can be found on Instagram and are mostly of her visits to curious places. Ozlem enjoys travelling and recently spent an entire year having adventures in different countries.
Background to My Brother Jack
My Brother Jack is a novel written by George Johnston, published in 1964. Johnston grew up in Elsternwick, and his mother Minnie was a Voluntary Aid Detachment member during the war.
My Brother Jack is a semi-autobiographical novel that follows the character of David Meredith through his youth in inter-war Melbourne. David’s mother is a VAD at Caulfield Repatriation Hospital on Kooyong Road, and she often brings wounded soldiers into their house. His childhood is filled with injured and traumatised men, and his memories of the hospital are a powerful view of war’s impact through a child’s eyes.
An Australian classic, the novel brought Glen Eira’s post-war experience into the national consciousness. Johnston’s book won the Miles Franklin Award in 1964.
The My Brother Jack Awards, Glen Eira City Council’s annual literary competition, acknowledge the lasting impact of Johnston’s work.
*COVID-19 update: The health and wellbeing of our community, staff and visitors is a priority for us. Council will continue to follow the containment advice of State and Federal Health Departments when planning and hosting public events. In the event that a physical ceremony cannot be hold at Town Hall, options for a “virtual” or postponed ceremony will be considered.