ACCEPTANCE SPEECH : Claire Zorn – Winner of Book of the Year, Older Readers 2017

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Claire Zorn won the 2017 Book of the Year, Older Reader Award for One Would Think the Deep. The Award was presented to her at Government House, Hobart, on Friday 18 August.  This is the very moving acceptance speech she gave on the day….

I’m supposed to be good at putting things into words, but I’m afraid this time words fail me. It is impossible to describe how much this award means to me. The last twelve months of my life have been some of the hardest I’ve ever experienced due to personal reasons. (If you read my blog you will know what I’m talking about.) To be at this point now, with this award, is almost too much to take in. Thank you to the Children’s Book Council, to all the judges and people who put in so many hours to ensure this award remains one of the most prestigious awards for children’s and young adult writing in the country.

I would not be standing here today if it were not for the love and support of my husband, Nathan, who has also been my carer during this difficult time. I must also thank the amazing team at UQP for their unwavering support, especially my publisher, Kristina Schulz and my editor, Kristy Bushnell. I’m not sure if people understand the impact a brilliant editorial team can have on a novel. They have championed me and my work from the very first moment I started working with them five years ago.

The outpouring of love and support I have received from the community of Australian Young Adult authors has been extraordinary. We are blessed with the best young adult authors in the world, all of the shortlisted writers included. Finally, thank you to my readers, I definitely would not be here today without you.

Claire Zorn

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