The Institute of Professional Editors (IPEd) is pleased to announce the shortlist for the inaugural Rosanne Fitzgibbon Editorial Award-a national IPEd award for editorial excellence.
The award, known as the Rosie, was launched this year and the winner will be announced at the 8th IPEd National Editors Conference in Brisbane in September 2017.
IPEd congratulates the shortlisted editors who are Jacqueline Blanchard (All Fall Down), Denise O'Hagan (Jerome & His Women) and Susan Pierotti (City Kid).
Susan Pierotti carved a final 95,000 words out of what was originally a wide-ranging 400,000-word theatre memoir, City Kid, by actress Lola Russell (Palmer Higgs 2015, Creative Text Solutions 2016). The result is a highly readable memoir providing a unique perspective on a fascinating period of Australian history. Pierotti helped refine the focus to Lola's career and experiences in Melbourne, undertook extensive fact-checking and selected photographs from the author's private archives to include.
Jacqueline Blanchard helped Matt Condon trim 50,000 words from the 215,000-word original manuscript of All Fall Down (UQP), the third and final book in a unique non-fiction series chronicling entrenched crime and corruption in the Queensland Police Force from the 1950s. Blanchard's editorial role also included strategic cuts to manage legal risk, and incorporating just enough key detail of the backstory to satisfy new readers without alienating those who had read the previous books.
Denise O'Hagan fulfilled the demanding roles of both editor and publisher very professionally for her late mother, Joan O'Hagan. The historical novel Jerome & His Women (Black Quill Press), set in fourth-century Rome, explores the life of the saint and the talented ascetic women who helped him translate the Bible into Latin. The editor's role ranged from the all-important choice of whether to write a history or a novel, to fact-checking in a period of which there are contradictory accounts.
The Rosie honours the editorial contribution of Rosanne Fitzgibbon (1947-2012), whose professional life was spent chiefly at University of Queensland Press, editing fiction titles. She was herself the inaugural winner of the Beatrice Davis Editorial Fellowship in 1992, which took her to publishing houses in New York, subsequently benefiting every author she worked with. Rosie was known and loved for her passionate commitment to her authors, often over several titles.
The Rosie rewards editorial excellence with a cash prize of $4000 and is based on both the quality of the finished work and contributions from editor, author and publisher about the process. The Rosie will be awarded every other year, at the IPEd Conference, alternating with the Beatrice Davis Editorial Fellowship, which is awarded by the Australian Publishers Association.