Lost Melbourne, Past Loves
Alex Miller with Jan McGuinness at Woodend Community Centre

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Forest Street, Woodend, Vic 3442
Woodend Community Centre

Award winning writer Alex Miller is in conversation with Jan McGuinness about his latest novel The Passage of Love.


Alex Miller’s twelfth novel, The Passage of Love, published in 2017, is his most autobiographical novel yet, an ambitious story of the writer’s early struggles and loves from the vantage of old age.

Alex is twice winner of Australia’s premier literary prize, the Miles Franklin Literary Award, first in 1993 for The Ancestor Game and again in 2003 for Journey to the Stone Country. He is an overall winner of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, in 1993 for The Ancestor Game. His fifth novel Conditions of Faith won the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction in the 2001 NSW Premier’s Awards. In 2011 he won this award for the second time with his novel Lovesong. In 2007 Landscape of Farewell was published to wide critical acclaim and in 2008 won the Chinese Annual Foreign Novels 21st Century Award for Best Novel and the Manning Clark Medal for an outstanding contribution to Australian cultural life. Following the publication of Autumn Laing he was awarded the prestigious Melbourne Prize for Literature in 2012. His novel, Coal Creek, won the 2014 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award. The Simplest Words a collection of short pieces of fiction and non-fiction was published in 2015. Alex is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and a recipient of the Centenary Medal for an outstanding contribution to Australian cultural life. Alex is published internationally and widely in translation.

Robert Dixon’s 2014 monograph on the novels of Alex Miller, Alex Miller, The Ruin of Time, describes his novels as ‘immediately accessible … works of high literary seriousness – substantial, technically masterly and assured, intricately interconnected and of great imaginative, intellectual and ethical weight’. Read a review of Dixon’s work here and another here.

Alex lives with his wife Stephanie in Castlemaine, where he writes full time.


Jan McGuinness is a journalist with extensive experience as an executive, section editor, columnist and senior writer for magazines and newspapers including The Age and The Bulletin, and as a reporter and producer for television. A former ABC TV Commissioning Editor Arts & Entertainment, she created the award-winning weekly book program ‘Between the Lines’, and was chair of the Melbourne Writers Festival from 2004-2010. Jan taught long form and advanced writing to Journalism students at Monash University until recently and is working on a biography of the writer Shirley Hazzard among other commissioned non-fiction work.

She is the Vice Chair of Janet Clarke Hall at the University of Melbourne and Vice President of Humanities 21.