Official Website of Yuwaalaraay storymaker
Winner of the 2018 Black&Write Fellowship
RELEASED 29 SEPTEMBER 2020
SONG OF THE CROCODILE
"Darnmoor, The Gateway to Happiness. You feel some sense of achievement; that you have reached a destination in the very least. Yet, as the sign states, Darnmoor is merely the measure, a mark, a point on the road you begin to move closer to where you really want to be. Darnmoor itself is nothing."
Darnmoor is the home of the Billymil family, three generations who have lived in this 'gateway town'. Race relations between Indigenous and settler families are fraught, though the rigid status quo is upheld through threats and soft power rather than the overt violence of yesteryear.
As progress marches forwards, Darnmoor and its surrounds undergo rapid social and environmental changes, but as some things change, some stay exactly the same. The Billymil family are watched (and sometimes visited) by ancestral spirits and spirits of the recently deceased, who look out for their descendants and attempt to help them on the right path.
When the town's secrets start to be uncovered the town will be rocked by a violent act that forever shatters a century of silence. Full of music, Yuwaalaraay language and exquisite description, Song of the Crocodile is a lament to choice and change, and the unyielding land that sustains us all, if only we could listen to it.
2021 Miles Franklin Award
2021 Stella Prize
2021 Australian Book Industry Awards - Literary Fiction Book of the Year
2021 Victorian Premiers Literary Awards- Indigenous Writing
2021 MUD Literary Prize
2021 New South Wales Premiers Literary Awards - New Writing
2021 Indie Book Awards- Debut Fiction
SONG OF THE CROCODILE LONGLISTED FOR
DUBLIN LITERARY AWARD
In wonderful news, SOTC is one of 79 books nominated by libraries around the world for the 2022 DUBLIN Literary Award. Sponsored by Dublin City Council and in its 27th year, this award is the world’s most valuable annual prize for a single work of fiction published in English, worth €100,000 to the winner. You can read more about the award and longlistees here.
We are also proud to share that Song ofthe Crocodile has also been shortlisted for the 2022 Adealiade Festival Awards for Literature- Fiction Award. You can read more about the short listees at the State Library of South Australia website here.
In more wonderful news Nardi will be making her way to Naarm Melbourne for the 2022 Blak & Bright Literary Festival in March 2022. It will be the first time since the 2021 Adelaide Writers Week that Nardi has attend an in person event. Blak & Bright brings the best of First Nations writers, poets, academics, comedians and thinkers together to celebrate words and stories. Check out this festival's amazing events here.
IN THE PRESS
Rich, complex characters who’ll stay in your thoughts long after you’ve closed the book, a gripping story that moves effortlessly through time and space, and a voice suffused with music and warmth. SONG OF THE CROCODILE is a moving, wise, deeply rewarding novel from an astonishing writer.
Simpson doesn’t shy away from the complexity and nuance of the characters, who are at once survivors, victims and perpetrators of trauma grounded in dispossession and injustice. However, nor does she deny these characters joy and meaning in their lives – bringing their stories to the page with great tenderness and lyricism. This book is necessary reading for all Australians.
It’s hard not to drown Song of the Crocodile in awed praise but this book deserves every skerrick of hype. That it is Simpson’s debut feels like a magnificent question: what else might she bring us? For now, just surrender to her storytelling, rich with Yuwaalaraay language and song.
AUTHOR OF AN INSOLATED INCIDENT
STELLA PRIZE JUDGES' REPORT
Image by L.Simpson
Nardi Simpson is a Yuwaalaraay storyteller and performer living in Sydney. Her early music training at the Eora Centre of Aboriginal Studies, Visual and Performing Arts in Redfern, Sydney saw her begin a career as a musician, songwriter and performer with vocal duo Stiff Gins, travelling both nationally and internationally for twenty-one years and releasing three albums during that time.
Nardi's writing journey in 2014 participating in Indigenous Writers’ Mentorship Programs with Writing NSW and FATSIL Young Indigenous Writers Initiative. In 2016 , as part of Liveworks Festival, Nardi co-wrote and performed in the theatre work ‘Spirit of Things: Sound of Objects.’
In 2018 Nardi received the State Library of QLD’s Blak&Write Indigenous Fellowship and began refining what was to become her debut novel 'Song of the Crocodile'. In 2019 Nardi wrote and premiered her debut play ‘'Black Drop Effect,’ for the 2020 Sydney Festival. In early October 2020, 'Song of the Crocodile' was released with Hatchette Australia.
Nardi continues to perform with Stiff Gins, works with student ensembles and directs cross-cultural choir Barayagal at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and is currently undertaking a PhD with the ANU School of Music. Heavily involved in the making and sharing of culture in both her Sydney and Yuwaalaraay communities, Nardi lives in Sydney's Inner West with her partner and teenage son.
20/03/22 Wurundjeri Country
Naarm, Melb VIC
The Bogong with SJ Norman, Declan Fry, Tara June Winch, Victor Rodger (NZ), Emily Munro-Harrison, Nayook, Claire G. Coleman, Nayuka Gorrie.
7-9 pm AEST
Here you can explore recent podcasts, guest articles, interviews and revies and online content to do with Song of the Crocodile.