1 October 2021

Announcing the 2021 Winners of The Hachette Australia Prize for Young Writers

participants at the 2019 prize day laughing and smiling
Shortlisted writers at the 2019 prize day. Photo by Connor Tomas O’Brien.

Express Media and Hachette Australia are delighted to announce the 2021 Hachette Australia Prize for Young Writers was awarded to Maya Crombie, Jihad Yassine and, for the first time, we’re delighted to award the prize to two writers in the non-fiction category: Ruby Wiggins and Lara Vincent.

This year, over 550 entries were received across three categories; fiction, creative nonfiction and poetry. The shortlist was selected by a panel of Express Media judges, and the final winners selected by the 2021 Mentor, Danielle Binks, and Hachette Australia staff.

Danielle Binks had this to say about the winners and shortlist:

‘I want every single shortlistee to know that their stories were a joy to read, and each showed such talent and raw possibility – if I can gift all the shortlisted anything it would be perseverance, to keep reading and writing and striving in their chosen craft. 

To the winners and highly-commended … WOW. You all gave me such excitement and trust in the future of Australian publishing, and our storytellers. If you’re a preview of the authors taking to the stage and shelves; then I can’t believe how lucky we are, to be welcoming you all. And I want you to know you are writers – right now and forevermore. You have something; the intangible, important and crucial ingredient of voice and talent that all authors need but not all can be taught. You have that. All of you, in spades! Now you just need to keep creating, keep finding ways and platforms to tell your stories. Because we need them, we need you – art changes people, and people change the world, and I want all of you to keep changing and improving Australia.’

You can read the winners pieces over on the Express Media website now! 

NONFICTION: Ruby Wiggins, Watching the Wheels Spin, VIC and Lara Vincent, What Home Is, TAS

FICTION: Maya Crombie, Leap Year’s Boy, VIC

POETRY: Jihad Yassine, Box, NSW

Congratulations to all our winners and shortlisted writers!

Each winner receives $500 courtesy of Hachette Australia, publication of their work on the Express Media website, a book pack of YA titles courtesy of Hachette Australia, as well as their names and an acknowledgement printed in Voiceworks, Australia’s premier youth literary journal.

The prize was announced and presented in a special event at the National Young Writers Festival on Saturday 2nd of October, 2021.


For all media enquiries, please contact Magenta Sheridan, Creative Producer, Express Media | creativeproducer@expressmedia.org.au


the hachette logo with the words Hachette Australia