Praised as a “moving and lyrical work”, the novel follows Stephen Connolly as he experiences an existential crisis and decides to dump his girlfriend.
Wood, who is studying in the School of the Arts and Media, has been described as a “consummate observer of the human condition” as she takes readers on a journey through a day in the life of her protagonist, and ponders the complexities of human-animal relationships.
Animal People was chosen by popular vote from the Award’s Christina Stead fiction shortlist.
“I am absolutely thrilled with the award, it came as a total surprise,” said Wood, who is currently on a writer’s residency in Perth.
“Right now I am struggling along on the first draft of a new novel. At this vague and murky stage of creating a book, when it often feels as though it will never amount to anything, to get such an expression of reader confidence is an enormous boost,” she said.
Media contact: Fran Strachan, UNSW Media Office, 9385 8732