KILLINGS, daily columns and blog —

KYDYAC

KYD YA Championship – contributors, titles and how to win

by Stephanie Van Schilt , July 27, 201216 Comments
Image credit: Wonderlane

Happy almost weekend everyone! Our usual Friday Amusement and distractions posts are on hiatus for the next few weeks because something special is going on here at Killings

Are you getting ready? Are you getting excited? Get your books out and your voting caps on because the KYD YA Championship starts next week!

From Monday 30 July until 17 August, contributors will be championing their favourite Australian YA classic from the last 30 years. At the end of each post, you will have the chance to vote to determine the winner – just follow the links.

And don’t forget that when you vote, you go into the draw to be a winner yourself – we have three amazing YA prize packs from our friends at Allen & Unwin, Penguin and Hardie Grant Egmont to give away.

Can’t wait until Monday to find out who is involved and what books will be discussed? Good, because the wait is over! Our eleven contributors and contenders for the KYDYAC crown are *drum roll* …

  • Kate O’Donnell on Tomorrow, When the War Began by John Marsden (1993)
  • Andrew McDonald on Space Demons by Gillian Rubinstein (1985)
  • Agnes Nieuwenhuizen on Looking For Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta (1992)
  • Judith Ridge on Loving Athena by Joanne Horniman (1997)
  • Lili Wilkinson on Obernewtyn by Isobelle Carmody (1987)
  • Holly Harper on Sabriel by Garth Nix (1995)
  • Ruth Starke on Deadly, Unna? By Phillip Gwynne (1999)
  • Alyssa Brugman on Fortress by Gabrielle Lord (1980)
  • Adele Walsh on Mandragora by David McRobbie (1994)
  • Bec Kavanagh on Came Back to Show You I Could Fly by Robin Klein (1991)
  • Jordi Kerr on The Ghost’s Child by Sonya Hartnett (2007)

If your favourite Australian YA book from the last thirty years isn’t featured in our shortlist, never fear – from Monday you can vote for it to be the KYDYAC People’s Choice winner.

We’d also love to hear from you about KYDYAC or YA in general, so jump in on the comments, follow us on Twitter (@kyd_journal, #KYDYAC) and Facebook. Also, for all updates, sign up to our e-News or subscribe to the Killings RSS feed.




  • Liza

    When you see it laid out like this, you can see what a golden age the 80s and 90s were for Oz YA – it’s a fabulous list.

  • http://www.beantherereadthat.com kate o’d

    Hoo boy, get ready. This is exciting. What a brilliant list. Though, I shall not be distracted from my book, not my my champion book, oh my sure winner…ooh, Jo Horniman, Sonya Hartnett,SPACE DEMONS!…no no. Keep on track, Kate…

  • http://www.jordikerr.com Jordi

    Am I the youngest contributor?? Representing the ’00s!

  • http://www.misrule.com.au/wordpress Judith

    Is it any coincidence that the KYDYAC is running at the same time at that other minor competition… the Olympics? I think not. Let the Games Begin! (And you all have to vote for Loving Athena because it is one of THE great under-recognised Australian YA books of all time.) (Plus I will send you dark chocolate licorice bullets if you do.)

  • http://www.misrule.com.au/wordpress Judith

    Also, small technical correction: There is no “I” at the beginning of Came Back to Show you I Could Fly. Bonus points (and dark chocolate licorice bullets) to those of us old enough to remember the song (and singer) it is a quote from.

    • Stephanie Van Schilt

      Hi Judith! Thanks ever so much for picking that up – all fixed now. The KYD team are so excited!! Let the championship begin!
      Jordi – Your book IS the youngest…but perhaps one of the many amazing titles released in the ’00s will take out the KYDYAC People’s Choice?

  • JessB

    Oh no, I love most of those books! How will I ever vote for just one?!

    Can’t wait to read the posts, I came here from Bec’s Facebook page, and I’m so excited to have discovered your site!

  • Julia T

    Hehe I remember listening to the Came back To Show You I Could Fly song, when I studied the novel in Year 9 English! Can’t remember the artist or name of the track, but now I have the words stuck in my head…and I want to go home and read the book!

    • Judith Ridge

      No dark chocolate bullets for you, Julia!

      • Jon

        Marcia Hines, ‘From the Inside’, 1974.

  • http://www.beckavanaghreads.wordpress.com Bec

    Ooh, such a great list! Space Demons is definitely up there for me (although coming a close second of course to ‘Came Back To Show You I Could Fly). I feel like rushing down to the library and revisiting my whole YA reading list right now!

  • http://www.lisadempster.com.au lisa dempster

    Haha – literary Olympics. Classic. I am pained about what to vote for in the gold category though!

lv87bc

Kill Your Darlings

Young Adults Talk Young Adult Fiction: The Level 87 Book Club

Bronte Coates, the Digital Content Coordinator at Readings Books, talks YA fiction in preparation for the Readings/KYD OzYA event on the 14th of July: This month, I’ve been gathering questions and comments from teens in preparation for our upcoming panel on the state of Australian young adult … Read more »

9781863957434

Kill Your Darlings

What We’re Reading: Readings staff share their June picks

Looking for a book recommendation? Staff from Readings bookshop share what they’ve been reading this month. Read more »

lisa-gorton_the-life-of-houses

James Tierney

A Novel of Longer Exhalations: Lisa Gorton’s The Life of Houses

It’s sometimes said that each book teaches you how to read it. That each way of telling a story needs to not only beguile anew but needs to tutor the reader in the ways to best attend its pages. Read more »

clouds-of-sila-maria-1

Rebecca Shaw

The curse of the ‘gal pals’

As a well-known humourless, angry, hairy arm-pitted, feminist lesbian, I encounter daily issues that I can place on a scale from things that mildly irritate me all the way to things that completely offend me. Read more »

2691149967_01b38304f3_b

Rebecca Shaw

Fuck Yeah: Swearing like a lady

I had been trying to pinpoint exactly why the HBO television show Veep brings me such joy. Yes, it is a very funny, very well-written show with a great cast, but that didn’t quite go far enough in explaining the immense enjoyment it gives me. The eureuka moment finally struck when I stumbled over a compilation video of the best insults from the show. Read more »

AnneEdmonds-300dpi-sml-860x450_c

Alexandra Neill

Curse of the Comedienne: When comedy comes before gender

At this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival, I saw only shows by women. I did this for several reasons: to support great comedians, to force myself to see more shows I knew nothing about, and because I really like comedy by ladies. I also did it because I was curious. I love comedy, but increasingly have been bothered by the obvious gender disparity. Read more »

Zombies

Michelle Roger

It’s All Just Preparation for the Zombie Apocalypse

‘She’s just another Walking Dead hanger-on,’ I hear you say. Well, yes, I am partial to a bit of walker action. And yes, I may have entertained the odd erotic daydream about a crossbow carrying, scraggy-bearded redneck – but this is not where my zombie obsession began. Come gather around people. Hear my obsessive zombie-loving origin story. Read more »

tom-cruise-jack-reacher-premiere-postponed

Chris Somerville

A lit match in a box of wet dynamite: Tom Cruise is Jack Reacher

I first watched Jack Reacher a few years ago, in a spate of insomnia. The plot is a confused mess, both needlessly intricate and incredibly simple. I’m not going to go into it, mainly because I don’t actually know why the people in this movie do anything. Read more »

Partisan

Joanna Di Mattia

To experience the world with blinkers on: Ariel Kleiman’s Partisan

Partisan beautifully evokes that complex space between childhood and adulthood, when we start to question the worldview we have inherited – when we begin to see the world through our own eyes. It is both a coming-of-age story, and an innocence-coming-undone story. Read more »

Zombies

Michelle Roger

It’s All Just Preparation for the Zombie Apocalypse

‘She’s just another Walking Dead hanger-on,’ I hear you say. Well, yes, I am partial to a bit of walker action. And yes, I may have entertained the odd erotic daydream about a crossbow carrying, scraggy-bearded redneck – but this is not where my zombie obsession began. Come gather around people. Hear my obsessive zombie-loving origin story. Read more »

OITNB2

Anwen Crawford

Still in Prison: The limitations of Orange is the New Black

No, I haven’t binge-watched the entire new season of Orange Is The New Black in one sleepless, bleary-eyed frenzy. This season, the show’s third, doesn’t lend itself to that kind of viewing. The pace is slower, the cliff-hangers missing. Read more »

kim-kardashian-selfish-cover-main

Brodie Lancaster

We Are All Kardashians

For the past five years, I have loved and been obsessed with the Kardashians. Specifically, the E! reality series that made them famous. I often feel the need to intellectualise why I like these series and the people on them – you know, because I’m not a moron, and these are shows about morons, for morons. Read more »

ss_8df8236403f5aad45eeedd33d2bd545e45435b39.1920x1080

Katie Williams

The More Things Change: Choice and consequence in Life is Strange

You can either be a benevolent hero or a monster, but few games deal with the multitudes contained by actual people. And what does it matter, anyway? There’s no such thing as regret when it comes to in-game decision-making – not when you can so easily restart the game to see what outcome will result from choosing Option B instead. Read more »

svfw crop

Katie Williams

Silicon Valley Fashion Week?: Fashion, technology, and wearability

Last week saw the inaugural Silicon Valley Fashion Week? (yes, with a question mark) unfold in San Francisco. The show promised ‘drones, robots, and mad inventions’, and tickets sold out swiftly; attendees were clearly eager to see more inventive clothing in this heartland of nerds. Read more »

AnimalCrossing copy

Katie Williams

Digging For Meaning in Utopia: Storytelling in Animal Crossing

Animal Crossing is a series of games in which – as my partner once remarked incredulously – ‘nothing ever happens.’ In its latest incarnation, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, you become the unwitting mayor of a town populated by anthropomorphic, bipedal animals. Read more »

CrawlMeBlood_20150607_261_LoRes copy

Jane Howard

Adhocracy: Lifting the curtain on the creative process

Every June long weekend I wrap myself up in several extra layers and make my way to the Waterside Worker’s Hall in Port Adelaide for Adhocracy, Vitalstatistix’s annual hothouse that brings together artists from around the country for a weekend of creative development. Read more »

Orlando #2 - THE RABBLE

Jane Howard

This Is a Story of Artistic Excellence

This is a story of the first four plays I saw at Malthouse Theatre. It’s a story that can only continue as long as support for independent artists continues; it’s a story that can only keep growing as long as support for independent artists grows. It’s a story of where artistic excellence comes from, and how we get to see it on our main stages. Read more »

AnneEdmonds-300dpi-sml-860x450_c

Alexandra Neill

Curse of the Comedienne: When comedy comes before gender

At this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival, I saw only shows by women. I did this for several reasons: to support great comedians, to force myself to see more shows I knew nothing about, and because I really like comedy by ladies. I also did it because I was curious. I love comedy, but increasingly have been bothered by the obvious gender disparity. Read more »