MUD Literary Prize Winner 2020!

The Committee of the MUD Literary Club is pleased to announce that the winner of the third annual MUD Literary Prize is Master of My Fate, by Sienna Brown.

The MUD Literary Prize is a $3000 prize for the best debut literary novel by an Australian writer, offered by Adelaide philanthropic group MUD Literary Club as part of Adelaide Writers’ Week.

Master of My Fate was chosen from a shortlist that also included The Artist’s Portrait, by Julie Keys; Lifetime of Impossible Days, by Tabitha Bird; Fusion, by Kate Richards, and Heart of the Grass Tree, by Molly Murn.

The judges offered the following comments


Master of My Fate, by Sienna Brown (Vintage): Superbly written and well-researched historical fiction, built around a unique and fascinating sliver of overlooked Australian convict history. The story rolls along at an absorbing pace through its three locations – Jamaica, London and New South Wales – and it’s a vividly drawn tale that would lend itself easily to a screen adaptation. 

Finding William - a short story

August. It was a miserable winter’s afternoon. To top it off, I’d forgotten my umbrella. I dashed across the street to get myself a real coffee. Flat white. Double shot, splash of honey. Huddled under the awning with the other take-away patrons, to watch the typical Sydney deluge pour down. Lowly pedestrians, thoughtlessly sprayed by the BMWs and SUVs roaring past.


The café sat in Queens Square, an enclave for those who plied their trade in the legal profession. Its modern architecture once highlighted in Vogue Living, giving it media weight, among the neighbouring 19th century buildings. Icons of Sydney’s colonial past.


The rain eased, I decided to make a run for it. Darted my way between the red-lighted, windscreen-wiper traffic. Hurried through the twelve-foot wrought iron gates, across the vast pebbled courtyard and opened the solid wooden doors to enter into my workplace - Hyde Park Barracks - a cathedral-windowed, golden hued, sandstone monument.


The day before had left me feeling unsettled...

"To all my readers who have made contact and shared your thoughts, I've been deeply touched by how much William's story has meant to you. For this I thank you. Books truly are amazing!"

           Sienna Brown