2014 Australian Women Writers’ Challenge

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Greetings Brave Adventurers,

“Are male authors more likely to have their books reviewed in influential newspapers, magazines and literary journals than female authors?

They are according to the VIDA count, an analysis of major book reviewing publications in North America and Europe. Australian publications fair little better, as statistics gathered by Bookseller & Publisher and republished in Crikey in March 2012 demonstrate. Yet in late 2011, when Tara Moss mentioned this gender imbalance on her blog, a literary reviewer from The Age accused her of “privileged whining”.

Another who commented on Moss’s blog was Elizabeth Lhuede. Lhuede knew that it wasn’t just male readers and reviewers who were guilty of gender bias. An analysis of her own reading had revealed she too read fewer books by women, especially Australian women. Part of the problem, she knew, was one of awareness. When she went to find books at her local library, the weekend staff couldn’t name one living Australian female author. So, if books by Australian women aren’t being reviewed, how do readers know what they’ve published? How do they know to ask for them at libraries and book shops? How would they know to recommend them to friends?”
From The Australian Women Writers’ Challenge Blog.

My ‘to read’ pile this year (and books you will see reviewed) include a slew of female Australian fantasy authors; Kate Forsyth, Margo Lanagan, Deborah Kalin, Sara Douglass, Tansy Rayner-Roberts, Juliet Marillier, Trudi Canavan, Dionne Lister and Naomi Eccles-Smith to name a few.

If you are interested in joining the challenge, you can find all the details here.

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