Conditions and Guidelines

Entries for the 2017 Awards have closed.

Conditions and Guidelines


1. All works must be in English. Bilingual editions where one of the languages used is English are also eligible.
2. All reasonable care will be taken with works submitted but no responsibility is accepted for loss or damage to books or other material received as nominations.
3. No work can enter more than one Victorian Premier’s Literary Award category, except works entered in the Award for Indigenous Writing. These works can also enter one of the five Victorian Premier’s Literary Award categories for which they are eligible.
4. In all cases not covered by these conditions and guidelines, or where there may be scope for interpretation, the nominator should seek clarification from the Wheeler Centre on 03 9094 7800.
5. In all matters relating to conditions of entry, the decision of the organisers is final. In all matters relating to judging of the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards, the decision of the judges is final.
6. Breach of the conditions of entry will render an entry invalid.


7. Authors must be Australian citizens or permanent residents of Australia.
8. These awards are for works first made available to the public during the eligibility period.

The following guidelines define this:
8.1 Eligible books will be those first published in English between 1 January 2016 and 31 December 2016, and made available to Australian readers between these dates.
8.2 Ineligible works include short stories, other than in a published collection by a single author; single poems published in anthologies or literary journals.
8.3 Books will not be eligible if a significant proportion has been previously published in book form. Judges are asked to primarily assess new work. To this end it is the publisher’s or nominator’s responsibility to clearly identify such material. Material that has previously been published only in anthologies or literary journals is deemed to be new.
8.4 Ebooks are eligible for the awards if this is the work’s original publication format.
8.5 Self-published works are eligible for this award, but must have an ISBN number and be available to the general public via more than one distribution channel.
8.6 If an eligible book has not been published by close of entries on Monday 3 October 2016, the manuscript of the book may be submitted PDF, or as a printed and bound uncorrected proof or manuscript.


9. The Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards are intended to be writers’ awards, for works as defined above.

The following guidelines define authorship:
9.1 Only works by no more than two authors are eligible. Co-authorship is defined here as meaning joint responsibility by no more than two authors for the entire text. It is the responsibility of the nominator to correctly acknowledge joint authorship, where applicable.
9.2 Works of multiple authorship, including anthologies, are not eligible for nomination and may not be entered under the name of one of the authors, or of the editor.
9.3 The nominated work must be the author’s own work.
9.4 Oral histories are ineligible unless the author claims artistic responsibility for a substantial part of the text.
9.5 Works may not be entered in the name of a committee.


10. Each entry must be accompanied by a completed and signed copy of the relevant nomination form plus remittance where applicable. Works will not be returned.
11. Works may be submitted by writers, publishers, production companies or literary agents. There is no limit to the number of titles that may be entered by a nominator or author provided the works entered meet all other entry requirements.
12. People or organisations nominating works on behalf of an author are deemed to be nominating with the author’s consent. It is the responsibility of the nominator to ensure and demonstrate that the author’s consent is obtained before nominating the work.
13. Without prejudice to the general conditions and guidelines, judges reserve the right to consider works that are eligible but have not been submitted.
14. Photocopies of the nomination form are acceptable.
15. Nomination forms and copies of the nominated titles must be received by the Wheeler Centre by 5.30pm  Monday 3 October 2016

Number of Copies Required

16. The number of copies of works that need to be submitted is specified in the information provided for each category. In the event of a work being shortlisted, additional copies may be required. If a work is submitted as an electronic PDF file, entries must follow the naming convention: surname_initial_title.pdf

Entry Fee

17. An entry fee of $75 including GST applies for each entry in all categories.

The Prize for Fiction

18. This prize is offered for a published novel or collection of short stories.
19. Four hard copies or one PDF file of the nominated book should be submitted.

The Prize for Non-fiction

20. This prize is offered for a published work of non-fiction.
21. Books consisting principally of photographs or illustrations will be ineligible unless the accompanying text is of substantial length.
22. Six hard copies or one PDF file of the nominated work should be submitted.

The Prize for Poetry

23. This prize is offered for a significant selection of new work by a poet, published in a book.
24. Four hard copies or one PDF copy of the nominated work should be submitted.

The Prize for Drama

25. This prize is offered for scripts written for theatre, musical theatre or radio.
26. Entries must fulfil one of the following criteria:
26.1 Theatre and musical theatre scripts first produced in Australia by a professional theatre company for an audience between 1 January 2016 and 31 December 2016. Workshopping or a reading is not deemed to constitute professional performance.
26.2 Radio scripts first broadcast within Australia between 1 January 2016 and 31 December 2016.
27. It is intended that the award for drama will be made primarily on an assessment of the literary merit of the works nominated and not on the merits of a particular production.
28. Adaptations will be eligible if, in the view of the judges, they represent a significant and creative transformation of the original text.
29. Where scripts have not been published, they must be submitted bound and typed on A4 size paper, or via PDF
30. Four hard copies or one PDF file of the nominated work should be submitted (and where music has been a component of the work, four compact disc or four USB drives (with clearly labelled mp3 files on each) copies should also be included). For musical theatre nominations, four copies of the vocal score and script should be submitted together with four copies of a recording of the work, either on CD, DVD or USB drive. Where orchestral/band scores of the work are available, four copies should also be submitted.  

The Prize for Writing for Young Adults

31. This prize is offered for a published work written for a readership between the ages of 13 and 18. Publishers may also consider submission of books that are appropriate to young adult readers but not published under a young adult imprint.
32. Literary merit will be the major judging criterion. In the case of illustrated books, the additional criterion of literary and artistic unity will be considered.
33. Four hard copies or one PDF file of the nominated work should be submitted.