Emily Bitto

Emily Bitto is an Australian writer and teacher. She authored two novels, The Strays (2014) and Wild Abandon (2021). Her debut book won the 2015 Stella Prize.

Emily Bitto has a MA in Literary Studies and a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from the University of Melbourne. Emily has been teaching for over a decade and has taught creative writing at The University of Melbourne, RMIT, Victoria University, and the Faber Writing Academy.

Her writing has appeared in various publications, including Meanjin, Island, HEAT, the Monthly, the Age, the Saturday Paper, The Sydney Morning Herald, and The Big Issue fiction edition.

Emily Bitto’s debut novel was inspired by aspects of the renowned Heide group of modernist artists and writers, which included controversial figures such as Sidney Nolan and John and Sunday Reed, whose private lives were as unconventional as their creations.

The unpublished manuscript The Strays was shortlisted for the 2013 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award. The novel was well-acclaimed and shortlisted for The Indie Book Award for Debut Fiction and the Dobbie Literary Award.

The Strays came out in the US and Canada in January 2017.

Emily Bitto released her second novel, Wild Abandon, in 2021. The lyrical story is about a heartbroken young man who flees Australia for the USA. Finding himself in the excessive, supernaturally familiar glamor of New York City, Will vows to say yes to everything he encounters along the way.

In October 2022, Bitto won the $20,000 Margaret and Colin Roderick Literary Award for her second novel Wild Abandon (A&U).

Emily Bitto lives in Melbourne. She also co-owns and runs Carlton wine bar, Heartattack & Vine.

Photo credit: www.emilybitto.com




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