The Writing Life

Information, inspiration and insights into the writing life

Robert Watkins, Head of Literary at Hachette Australia, spoke to Emma Cayley about Own Voices, the current publishing climate and writing outside experience.

EC: Hachette Australia is one of the publishers leading the way in bringing Own Voices writing to a mainstream audience, certainly in Australia. How did this progressive shift happen?

Migrant Writing Growing Strong

Jonathan Green to present 2018 Deborah Cass Prize

 

The fourth annual Deborah Cass Prize for Writing, which goes to unpublished migrant writers, will be presented by literary editor and journalist Jonathan Green, on Wednesday 5 December.

The Prize received 91 entries from around Australia in 2018. The judges Christos Tsiolkas, Nyadol Nyuon and Tony Ayres will choose the winner from a shortlist of nine entries:

A photograph of Jessica Obersby. Jessica has short red hair and has a parrot sitting on her shoulder

Things I fear:

Being buried alive

The awful, breathless struggle of drowning

Losing the ones I love

Being late

That I will lose my job

That the planet will die due to climate change

That I am unlovable

That my anxiety will win

A photo of Inner Gippsland writing group members and Local Mentor Scot Gardner

The Inner Gippsland Write-ability Goes Regional and Online Writing Group recently finished its eight-month run under the program. Write-ability Project Assistant Alex Fairhill joined the group in Moe to celebrate the participants’ work, and hear about plans for the group to continue.

 

Round 3 of the Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund received 112 applications, requesting a total of $591,306.34 in grant money.

This round's judges were Emily Booth from Text Publishing, Indra Kurzeme from State Library of Victoria and author Eli Glasman. They were thrilled with the quality of the overall applications and awarded $48,288 to 9 applicants.

Moreno Giovannoni, winner of the inaugural Deborah Cass Prize, reflects on how it helped him develop his debut novel.

Sara Bannister has been writing for years. But, she asks, can she call herself an emerging writer yet?

 

When I was eighteen, I joined a troupe of amateur actors. My first (and only) performance was a pastorela, a play representing the birth of Jesus. I played the role of the angel who guided Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem and accompanied them during their first days as parents. We rehearsed for a month. I didn’t have many lines but needed to position myself at the centre of the stage with my arms spread wide, showing off my shimmering wings. The lighting technicians would illuminate the wings, casting golden light on the nativity scene.

– Runner-up of the 2018 Grace Marion Wilson Prize for Fiction –

An image of an open notebook and a person writing

A creative writing PhD looks pretty good on paper. A research adventure into a topic you find fascinating, mentoring from expert supervisors, immersion in a creative community and in some cases a scholarship to go with it, all with the aim of adding something new to the literary landscape.

But is it right for you?

PhD island can be a lonely one. You’ll be spending several years at the precipice of a research project that only you can complete. Just you, your laptop, your Endnote library and your over-full brain.