SidePost: The Inky Awards Ceremony!

inky awards

Yesterday, I had the immense honour of being present when the winners of the Inky Awards were announced, with authors Alice Pung, Claire Zorn, Justine Larbalestier, Gabrielle Tozer and Melissa Keil in the room at the same time.

For those of you who don’t know, the Inky Awards are from a company called Inside A Dog. The idea for the name of this website is

Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside a dog, it’s too hard to read.

Every year, they gather a panel of judges who choose a long-list of books, and then a shortlist. From this shortlist, a book is then chosen as the winner with votes from website visitors tallied.

Now the thing that makes the Inky Awards special is the fact that there are teen judges. I mean, YA fiction should be judged by YA readers right? And what group is more into YA than teenagers? There are a lot of adult reviewers out there saying: “oh these books are way too inappropriate. Totally not suitable for teenagers”. But then, adults aren’t the ones who read YA are they (not saying that they don’t, but they’re not the majority). So, Inside A Dog gathers a panel of teen judges from all over Australia to choose their favourite books. This year, the long-list was:


The books in the top row are running for golden award – best book from an Australian author. The books in the bottom row are running for silver – best international book. Chosen by a panel of 7 teen judges – this year included Melanie, the owner of YA Midnight Reads, which is one of the most successful YA Reviewing blogs of all time – the long-list is then whittled down to a shortlist of 5 in each row. This year, the panel (of which INCLUDED MELANIE OMG SHE IS LIKE YA REVIEWING ROYALTY) pushed it down to these books:

inky short

So yeah, that was where I found myself yesterday. Listening to Justine talk about stalking a gangster for “research”, and Melissa talk about apocalypses at an incredibly fast speed (I swear, Melissa Keil talks like she’s talking for her life). All the authors were hilarious, and left me that little bit more inspired.

Now to the winners….. congratulations to:

gold award

Gabrielle Tozer for winning Gold with her debut The Intern!

silver award

And Rainbow who won Silver with Fangirl!

Overall a great result, and a great night yesterday! I got to meet and talk to five authors and YA Reviewing royalty! Definitely recommended for any Melbournians next year. Come on down and maybe I’ll see you there 🙂


4 thoughts on “SidePost: The Inky Awards Ceremony!

  1. Soooooo, basically taking this entire long list and adding it to my TBR list. Well, the ones I haven’t read, anyways. “Half Bad” and “Fangirl” have been on my list for ages, so this is making me push them up to the top.

    I don’t think I realized that you lived in Melbourne? That’s awesome, it’s my favorite city in Australia and I get over there pretty regularly!


  2. I haven’t heard of The Inky Awards or half of these books, so I’ll be sure to look up both!

    It seems such an obvious solution to fill the panel with young people, considering the genre of books being judged. It definitely feels like there is tension within the YA genre between the authors/young people who are reading and the “adults” who are pulling the strings (publishers, journalists). I don’t know if you have read The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks but that was hugely criticised as being ‘inappropriate’ for young people. Personally, I think what is and is not appropriate is a completely personal and individual notion.

    Anyway, this was a great post, and how wonderful that you got to attend the ceremony and be inspired by the young panel! 🙂


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