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Saturday, 31 March 2007

John Hinde, erstwhile film critic with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) who died last year, wrote a bequest into his will to fund a new literary award, it has been revealed. The value of the award has not yet been disclosed. Or even decided. The Australian Society of Authors' committee "is still to decide on its final value".

The Barbara Jefferis Award will be given annually from next year for "the best novel written by an Australian author that depicts women and girls in a positive way or otherwise empowers the status of women and girls in society. The novel may be in any genre and it is not necessary for it to be set in Australia." Susan Wyndham covers the announcement in The Sydney Morning Herald.

Critic Kerryn Goldsworthy mentioned a rumour about a pending announcement on 12 March on her blog A Fugitive Phenomenon.

Barbara Jefferis was Hinde's wife. She died in 2004. She wrote nine novels and received an Order of Australia in 1986 "for services to literature".

"Hinde has also funded a new film script award for the Australian Writers' Guild," reports Wyndham.

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