Author Randomly Decides to Check Her Junk Mail, Wins $150,000

You might want to skim over your junk email next time before you click “delete all” as you might miss out on some surprises.

Australian author Helen Garner would have missed out on a huge cash prize if she hadn’t gone through her spam messages, reports the Sydney Morning Herald. She was browsing through her junk folder when she spotted a suspicious email from Yale University which had “good news” and asked for her contact number. She immediately contacted her publisher to validate the email.

The director of the Windham-Campbell Prizes for writers, Michael Kelleher, would later confirm that she had actually won $150,000 ($210,820) for her nonfiction writing.

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I nearly keeled over,” Garner told the Herald. “I’m staggered. I feel thrilled and validated.

Garner made her debut via her fiction novel “Monkey Grip” in 1977. She has published both fiction and nonfiction books throughout her 40-year career as a writer. One of her most famous and controversial nonfiction books is the Australian bestseller “The First Stone,” about a 1992 sexual harassment scandal at Australia’s Ormond College.

Garner’s award citation stated: “Helen Garner brings acute observations and narrative skill to bear on the conflicts and tragedies of contemporary Australian life.”

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The 73-year old author is set to publish a collection of short nonfiction in April called “Everywhere I Look.”

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