The Writing Life

Information, inspiration and insights into the writing life

Photo of Hazel Rowley outdoors

Nine Australian writers have been shortlisted for the 2020 Hazel Rowley Literary Fellowship worth $15,000. 

The Fellowship, now in its ninth year, attracted over 60 applications from biographers and memoir writers across Australia.

Award-winning author Simmone Howell has written books, plays, advertorials, manifestos, glossaries, blurbs, non-fiction articles, screenplays and this delightful letter to Writers Victoria, among other things. Simmone, who also teaches creative writing, co-founded the small press publishing collective Vandal Press.

Writers Victoria expresses its dismay at the Federal Government’s decision to abolish the Department of Communication and the Arts and incorporate it within the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications (with no headline mention of Arts).

The decision to demote the Arts from its appointed department is a deeply concerning announcement for us, one which indicates that the cultural and creative activities of Australia are not, and will not be, a priority for the current government.

A smiling woman with shoulder length hair and blue eyes

Mary Borsellino has published work with a variety of micropress publishers in Australia and internationally. Her first foray into professional fiction writing was self-publishing a lurid YA novel at eighteen to supplement her babysitting income, and it kind of became a habit after that. Her website is http://maryborsellino.com

 

Early in my young adult fantasy novel Spare, a character is upset when a ballet has a tragic conclusion. Her friends aren’t especially understanding:

Janette Chen, 2019 winner of the Deborah Cass Prize, with Jean Bachoura, 2016 winner

We are delighted to announce that the winner of the 2019 Deborah Cass Prize for migrant writing is Janette Chen, for her story 'Wall of Men'.

The Deborah Cass Prize, now in its fifth year, awards $3000 plus a mentorship with an established writer and an introduction to a publisher to an unpublished writer who was born overseas or has at least one parent who was born overseas.

For this year’s International Day of People with Disability, Write-ability is featuring two very different storytellers, memoirist and 2019 Write-ability Fellow MJ McArthur and graphic artist Matt Robertson, one of the winners of this year’s Dulcie Stone Writing Awards.

Matt Robertson in the ArtGusto studio, pen in hand, creating "My Experience with Anxiety"

 

For this year’s International Day of People with Disability, Write-ability is featuring two very different storytellers, memoirist and 2019 Write-ability Fellow MJ McArthur and graphic artist Matt Robertson, one of the winners of this year’s Dulcie Stone Writing Awards.

 

Andy Jackson is an award-winning poet and performer who writes about bodily difference. He lives in Castlemaine, Victoria, and his poetry has been published in many literary journals. He has performed in several festivals, including the Brisbane Writers Festival, Prakriti Poetry Festival in Chennai, India, Newcastle Young Writers Festival and Overload Poetry Festival, among others. Andy, who has also worked in cafes and libraries, has been a resident at Writers Victoria, the Katherine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre and Asialink.

Travel items on a map

Writers Victoria, with the support of The Myer Foundation, is delighted to announce the recipients of Round 5 of the Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund.

We received 99 applications, requesting a total of $540,191 in grant money. This round's judges were writer Eugen Bacon, publisher Kirstie Innes-Will from Black Inc., and podcaster Astrid Edwards. They were impressed with the overall quality of the applications in what was a competitive round, awarding a total of $50,335 to 11 recipients across 10 grants.

When Leone Purdy of the Sale Write-ability writers group decided to self-publish her poetry book, not everything went to plan.

I was elated. My first book published – and it was lovely. I felt pride in myself; a feeling that was new to me.  Was this beautiful, softcover, book of quirky, idiosyncratic poems really mine? Working with a publishing service had all seemed so easy. I’d paid them to edit and review my manuscript. Where once it had been a jumbled mash of incoherent, long-winded and unrhythmical verse, it was now a polished poetry book.