2021
Submissions open

About the Prize

The Patricia Wrightson Prize ($30,000) is offered for a work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry written for children up to secondary school level. Books containing the work of more than four authors, including anthologies, are not eligible for nomination. In the case of books containing original illustrations, the judges may determine that the award be shared by the writer/s and the illustrator. 

The judging panel

Jane McCredie

Senior Judge

Jane McCredie is an award-winning journalist, writer and reviewer who has been widely published in Australia and internationally. A former book publisher, she is the CEO of Writing NSW and the founder and director of the Quantum Words Festival of writing about science. She is the author of Making Girls and Boys: Inside the science of sex and was coeditor of the 2013 anthology of The Best Australian Science Writing.

Jane is a graduate of the Australia Council’s arts leaders program and has previously chaired both the Christina Stead and Douglas Stewart panels of the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards.

Aleesah Darlison

Aleesah Darlison

Chair

Aleesah Darlison is an internationally published, award-winning author. She has written over fifty books for children including picture books, chapter books, novels and series. Aleesah has won or been shortlisted for numerous awards including the Environment Award for Children’s Literature, the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Eve Pownall Award, and the Speech Pathology Book of the Year Awards. Many of

Aleesah’s books champion the cause of animals, the environment, and child self-empowerment. Her titles include the League of Llamas Series, the Unicorn Riders Series, Warambi, Our Class Tiger, Stripes in the Forest: The Story of the Last Wild Thylacine, and Emerald: The Green Turtle’s Tale

Bronwyn Bancroft

Bronwyn Bancroft

Dr Bronwyn Bancroft is a proud Bundjalung Woman and Artist. Bronwyn has been exhibiting nationally and internationally for over three decades. Bronwyn has a diverse artistic practice including public art commissions and imagery design for private commission.

Bronwyn has illustrated and/or written 41 children’s books. Her books have been translated into many languages and are distributed internationally. In 2010 Bronwyn received the Dromkeen Medal for her contribution to Australian Literature. Bronwyn has been a finalist in international children’s literature awards including the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (2020) and Hans Christian Anderson Award (2016).

Bronwyn has been a Director of her own company, Designer Aboriginals Pty Ltd since 1985. Bronwyn is a Director of Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME) and a member of the Commonwealth Bank Indigenous Advisory Council.

Bronwyn is a Founding Member of Boomalli Aboriginal Artists Co-operative (established in 1987) and has been a volunteer senior strategist at the Co- operative since 2009.

Bronwyn has a Diploma of Visual Arts from Canberra School of Art, 2 Masters degrees, one in Studio Practice and the other in Visual Art, University of Sydney. Bronwyn was awarded her Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Sydney in 2018. In 2020 Bronwyn received the Sister Alison Bush Medal (Alumni Awards) from the University of Sydney in 2020.

Dub Leffler

Dub Leffler

Descended from the Bigambul people of South-West QLD, Dub Leffler is one of Australia’s most sought after illustrators of children’s literature. He has written two books for children and is currently illustrating his 23rd title.

Dub’s work has afforded him travel to places as diverse as remote Australia,Europe,Indonesia and America and his illustrations are now in permanent collection in The National Library of Congress in Washington, Dc.

In 2019, Dub recently won The Eve Pownall Award for Book Of The Year from The Children’s Book Council of Australia for Sorry Day. 2020 will see the release of two books Dub has illustrated - Rocky & Louie, written by the lovely Raewyn Caisley & Phil Walley-Stack and Strangers On Country, written by the wonderful Kirsty Murray & Dave Hartley.

Dub is currently illustrating Our Dreaming written by the lovely Kirli Saunders.

About Patricia Wrightson

The prize, established in 1999, commemorates the work of Patricia Wrightson (1921-2010), one of Australia’s most distinguished children’s authors. In her lifetime Wrightson published 27 books which have been translated into 16 languages. Wrightson, born in Lismore, New South Wales, moved to Sydney during the Second World War where she worked as hospital administrator in Bonalbo. Wrightson became assistant editor and later, editor of the School Magazine, a literary publication for children. By then, she had begun her literary career. Her writing is well known for entwining Australian Aboriginal mythology.  For her services to children’s literature, Wrightson was awarded the Hans Christian Andersen Medal in 1986. She was also a multiple winner of the Australian Children's Book Council Book of the Year Award for The Crooked Snake (1956), The Nargun and the Stars (1974), The Ice Is Coming (1978) and A Little Fear (1984). 

Past winners and shortlists

2020

Cover image for the book Ella and the Ocean.
Allen & Unwin
Winner
Wilam book cover
Black Dog Books
Shortlisted
Cover image for the book Young Dark Emu.
Magabala Books
Shortlisted
Cover image for the book One Tree.
Penguin Random House
Shortlisted
Cover image for the book Catch a Falling Star.
Walker Books
Shortlisted
Cover image for the book Detention.
Penguin Random House
Shortlisted

2019

Cover image of Leave Taking.
Winner
Cover image of Dingo.
Winner
Cover image of Maya and Cat.
Shortlisted
The Dog with seven names
Shortlisted
Nevermoor
Shortlisted
Shine Mountain
Shortlisted