A University of Tasmania Bachelor of Arts (Hons) graduate has won the prestigious 2011 Vogel Literary Award.
Launceston-based Rohan Wilson, 34, was announced as the winner by famed Australian author Tim Winton at a ceremony in Sydney.
Wilson, who graduated from UTAS in 1998 and spent several years teaching English in Japan, said he was blown away to win the award for his first novel, The Roving Party.
The Vogel is presented each year to the author of an unpublished manuscript, and comes with $30,000 in prizemoney.
“It is an amazing feeling,” Wilson said.
“When I was an undergraduate I hoped one day that I might get published, but you never really expect to receive an award like this.
“You put your application in and cross your fingers – but you don’t really expect to win.
“To pull it off and to get the award is an unbelievable feeling, an affirmation of all that hard work.
“It is great.”
Wilson said he had long held ambitions to become a published author.
“I did creative writing as a unit as part of my degree with UTAS,” he said.
“My intention even as an undergrad was to write novels and try to get them published, (it) was always my ambition.
“I loved studying at the University of Tasmania, there’s no doubt.
“A lot of what I know about writing I learned at UTAS.”