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2020 Newcastle Short Story Award judges - Laura Elvery and Khalid Warsame

January 2020 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter, Newsletters
Newcastle Short Story Award book coverClosing soon! 
Newcastle Short Story Award 
Entries close 8pm AEST, 3rd February

Accepting short stories up to 2000 words.

Top works selected by the judges will be published in the 2020 anthology.

$7800 in prizes

Learn more
Upcoming workshops

Typewriter

Creative Writing Course
Monday 17th February

Have you always wanted to write or been writing at home alone for years?

Do you want to write your life story or family history in an engaging way?

Learn the purpose of the first draft. 

Learn how to start and how to keep going. Enjoy writing about a range of subjects.

Meet new people and make new friends.

Learn More

Waler Mason, Travel writer and writing tutor

Travel Writing Course
Saturday 7th March
Have you ever read a travel memoir and thought: “My adventures were more interesting than that"?

Or are you about to travel and considering turning your journey into a piece of writing?
 
If you have ever wanted to write about your travels then join Walter Mason for this full-day workshop.

Learn More

 

Logo for Hunter Writers Centre
is proud to support the inaugural

Maitland Indie Festival

Friday February 28th - Sunday March 1st
A celebration of independent writing and publishing in all its forms, IF Maitland will feature workshops, keynote speakers, panelists, book launches, entertainment, and a schools program. Are you interested in volunteering? Send a message via facebook or email us

Learn more

MAITLAND INDIE FESTIVAL LOGO

Port Macquarie Grassroots Festival

March 27-29

Tickets available from Monday 3 February through Trybooking.com.

This event is in its sixth year. Affordable writing workshops – only $35 for the whole weekend (dinners excluded).

This year there are 19 concurrently run workshops, a presentation, two discussion panels, and Hayley Lawrence is Keynote Speaker.

Contact  Event Coordinator Wendy Haynes at grassrootswritersweekend@gmail.com or check out the website here

Port Macquarie

Coastal walk, Port Macquarie. Learn more about this wonderful town

Lauren Hislop Blogger on Disability

HWC Blog – introducing Lauren Hislop

Our 2020 blogger is social scientist 
and disability advocate Lauren Hislop

Look out for Lauren's blogs starting very soon. 
She will blog about the challenges of seeking employment when you live with a disability here. 

Lauren blogged for us in October
read her humourous, engaging pieces here:

Living with Disability 
Part 1 Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

Member Lou Berry's poetry book

 

 

Member News

HWC Member, L.E. Berry has a poetry collection published by Ginninderra Press.

Channelling childhood  L. E. Berry

HWC Member Gillian at NAG live read 2019

Newcastle Art Gallery Live Readings 2020
We are thrilled to announce Live Readings at Newcastle Art Gallery will continue in 2020.
Now held 1st Wednesday of each month, 3-5pm.

You do not need to write a piece in response to the gallery exhibition but we encourage you to use the exhibited works for inspiration.
Come along and share stories, poems, memoir pieces, songs, rants or essays.

 

HWC Writing Groups
Attendance is free as part of your membership. 

There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: 
Belmont, Maitland and Teralba. 

Email us for more information or see the entire list of writing groups 
when you login to the Members Area
Newcastle Short Story Award book cover

December 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter, Newsletters

HWC Member Gillian at NAG live read 2019

Newcastle Art Gallery Live Reading
The last live reading of 2019 was held at Newcastle Art Gallery. Over 20 stories, poems, opinion pieces were heard amid a brilliant collection of landscapes.
Cash prizes were awarded to: Eve Gray, Phil Williams, John Dunn, Diana Pearce and Gillian Swain

Here are two works we heard on the day:

 

NOT ONLY A TREE             
Eve Gray                                            
in response to Bonsai nursery 
by Alexander McKenzie  
     
Each
of the beloved
had a tree
to rest under
and contemplate,
to hang upon
and contemplate,
to plant and wander
through, meander,
and contemplate.

What is hidden 
is revealed
What is below
is above.
What is lost
is sometimes found.
 


Look,
You may never know
the answer,
but look,
if there is one
it should be here
somewhere
between the seed
and top of the canopy.

Perhaps
It is about potential,
perhaps the seeming small
holds the complete 
whole miracle.

Patience 
and perseverance
nurturing nature
and the goodness
of earth left
Resting in peace
 
SUMMER RAIN
Diana Pearce
in response to Summer Rain 
by Angus Nivison

I sit on the verandah
listen to rain’s timpani 
                       on the iron roof
its chorus in the downpipes
of overflowing tanks

breathe the dampness in the air
watch water cascade
like shafted light
a pale promise of relief

see the water become blood
as it scours the tree-dead 
                hillsides
of a distressed land

 

 

Creative Writing group HWC members

2020 Membership Gift Vouchers 
in time for Christmas
Email us for more information

 

Why not gift an HWC membership to a friend or family member for 2020? 
No landfill! Lasts for 12 months. The gift that keeps on giving.
Read all the benefits of a HWC Membership
HWC Member News
Thank you to our writing group facilitators for the wonderful task hosting HWC groups, welcoming new members and encouraging our writers. Thank you to the HWC Board who steer our vision and to Sue Polson and Helen Blackney, the volunteers working constantly behind the scenes to bring you all our programs and activities.
Jill Emberson, ABC Newcastle presenter
HWC lost one of our vibrant members last week. Jill Emberson asked HWC to help make a book from her Meet the Mob podcast series. Member-writers have created beautiful stories and poems during 2019. Local Aboriginal people and HWC Director met with Jill recently to finalise the editing process. We are sad that Jill did not live to see the final book but we continue with the next phase of the design, printing and launch in 2020. Vale Jill.
Emily S Smith Author of Childrens books
Member Emily S. Smith
has a picture book coming out with Larrikin House next year - her first book published by a traditional publishing house. The book is called 'Garbage Guts' - an environmental story about a garbage monster who is determined to have the ocean for himself. It personifies the North Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch and is aimed at 3-7 year olds. Illustrated by Heidi Cooper Smith.

In the past, Emily has self-published two picture books, 'Betty the Yeti's Disappointing Day' and 'Life Is Not Fair When You Are Just a Chair', with Graham Davidson as a part of the project Storytime Lane.
Katrina McKelvey author Member 
Katrina McKelvey
was commissioned in June this year by Macmillan Education to write four books for their Snappy Sounds reading project. They are being released May, 2020.

Phil WIlliams HWC member Live reading at Newcastle Art Gallery Speaker at July 2019 to a full audience and art works

Member 
Phil Williams' 
short story Lines of Steel was a finalist in the Newcastle Herald short story competition, and was published in the Newcastle Herald in January this year. His poem Goodbye Humans won a HWC-NAG ekphrastic award last month.

Claire Thomas authorMember Claire Thomas

As a result of being part of the HWC children’s writing group, I have improved my craft and formed networks by entering competitions and attending conferences. I attended the CYA conference in Brisbane earlier this year where I won the preschool picture book category with my manuscript, Secret Worlds.

I entered manuscripts in the CWA Scribbles awards. Manuscripts Moon Rise Sun Set; Not Another Unicorn Book and Adorn the Sky were all shortlisted. Moon Rise Sun Set was awarded Highly Commended in the final results. My next project is researching Margaret Olley for a new picture book manuscript.

Sharon Boyce author

Member 
Sharon Boyce 
received her first traditional publishing contract this year for her picture book There's A Shark In The Loo illustrated by Suzy Houghton. The contract is with Larrikin House and is due for release in 2020. Shortly afterwards she received a second contract from Larrikin House for another picture book to be released in 2021

 

Member 
Rebecca Trowbridge
Her two poems david is goliath and Dear E were published in The Enchanting Verses Literary Review in July. Her poetry and prose collection Bitter Matriarch was published in November.
Cover and illustrations from 'My Little Monster'
Member Kate Griffith My amazing mum took one of my children's picture book draft manuscripts and fully illustrated it herself then got it printed for my birthday. I was a little teary at seeing it in print I must say. I wrote this when I was 14 years old 

Magdalena Ball

Member 
Magdalena Ball 
interviewed Beth Spencer about her book High Wire Step on the Climactic Network

Nicole Sellers Spec Fic Part 3 blogger in May 2019

Member Nicole Sellers’ 
poems Ode to my Axial Skeleton and Sun Coat were published in The Enchanting Verses Literary Review in July.  Her poem Lady Firebrand Calls the Sea by Name won a HWC-NAG ekphrastic award in July. Her short story Safari Blonde was illustrated and published by Patchwork Raven in August Her poem Song for Cliodna was published in Three Drops from a Cauldron.

 

HWC Blog - our members Blogging
 
Lauren Hislop Blogger on Disability


Next year, our 2020 blogger will be social scientist 
and disability advocate
Lauren Hislop (L)

Lauren will blog about the challenges of seeking employment when you live with a disability

Lauren blogged for us in October
read her humourous, engaging pieces here:
Living with Disability
Meet the Newcastle Short Story Award judges Laura Elvery and Khalid Warsame

2020 Newcastle Short Story Award judges - Laura Elvery and Khalid Warsame

Newcastle Short Story Award Open Now

Accepting short stories up to 2000 words
$7800 in prizes

 Top works selected by our judges, 
Laura Elvery  and Khalid Warsame 
to be published in the 2020 Anthology
 
Learn more

NPP 2019 book cover for Soft Serve

2019 Newcastle Poetry Prize Anthology 
 
and all our anthologies are available from our

Bookshop 
Literary events and opportunities
 
Submissions close 27 January 2020 for the 
Writing NSW Kids and YA Festival 
(June 2020)
Learn more
book cover Butterflies book from Ash Island Hunter Wetlands
from Member Julia Brougham:
Butterflies and Bushland - is a book on sale for $25 in The Schoolmasters House on Ash Island Hexham and at MacLean's Booksellers Beaumont Street Hamilton
www.kooragangwetlands.com
 
Survey: Arts and Culture in Newcastle
Have your say and help shape Newcastle's art and culture
Consultation closes 15th January 2020.  
Learn more here

Writing NSW Access for Regional Writers Grants

Round 2 of the regional writers' grants opens November 25. HWC can support your application. Members of HWC have been successful receipients of Writing NSW grants in the past.
Learn more
HWC Writing Groups
Attendance is free as part of your membership. 
There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: 
Belmont, Maitland and Teralba. 
Email us for more information or see the entire list of writing groups 
when you login to the Members Area
University of Newcastle NeW Space Building

October 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter, Newsletters

You’re invited !

Newcastle Poetry Prize Ceremony

A free event

Level 8, NeW Space

from 2pm Saturday 26th October

Program includes: 
Live Reading 
$25 000 Prize Pool awarded 
and the launch of the 2019 anthology

See the list of poets to be published 
in the 2019 anthology

 

Hear these poets (and many more) read their brilliant works at the live reading.

a notice stating there are free drinks at the NPP ceremony

University of Newcastle NeW Space Building

Level 8, NeW Space, UoN. What a view!
HWC Blog: October Blogger is member Lauren Hislop

Lauren Hislop Blogger on Disability

Living with Cerebral Palsy – Living with Disability

Excerpt from Blog 1: “People often express to me that they find me inspirational simply for completing ordinary tasks. I once attended a job interview, during which I was praised for getting to the venue ‘all by myself’.  I had no idea that catching a cab was so impressive. My notion of inspiring action involves reducing world hunger. Placing witticism aside, it’s frustrating that people have such small expectations of me due to my disability. As I ventured home, ‘all by myself’, I knew I wouldn’t be offered that position.

Miss last months posts? You can read about Nature Writing by Julia Brougham here.

HWC Member News

HWC Member Susan Francis will have her memoir ‘The Love That Remains’ published by Allen and Unwin on February 4, 2020. A third of the way through writing the book about finding her natural parents, Susan met her husband. He helped her find many of the missing pieces in her story, and they soon went to live in Spain together. One morning in Lisbon, her life and the subsequent manuscript took a very different path. You can listen to Susan’s interview with Richard Fidler from ABC’s ‘Conversations’ here.

HWC Member Kit Kelen was asked how he felt about being selected for the 2019 Newcastle Poetry Prize anthology. Watch the video to hear his poetic response! Will his poem ‘Hardanger’ win a prize from the $25,000 prize pool?

HWC Members Magdalena Ball and Ellen Shelley had poetry featured at It’s Raining Poetry in Adelaide. Poem #16 by Magdalena Ball: “It always comes back to the bird: simulating a tougher species, reaching an arm / with privilege’s casual grace, nudge of hip or smack, easiest with small eggs / or chicks, curved beaks, striped plumage, power of the pack, slogans, insults / often reflect the wielder, truncation, onomotopoetic mud this cuck.” View the location here.

Live Readings at Newcastle Art Gallery

Another successful live-reading was held Tuesday 1st October.

Next live reading: 3pm, Tuesday December 3rd
Bring your stories, poems, essays, rants, songs, scripts.
In response to the 'WISH YOU WERE HERE' exhibition.
Other Literary Events

Christos Tsiolkas is coming to Scone!

Saturday 16 November

The Patrick White Oration is a new, major event for the Scone Literary Festival and will feature Christos Tsiolkas – award-winning author, critic, essayist, playwright and screenwriter in Conversation with Festival Patron, Phillip Adams. The Oration also doubles as the launch event for the Festival’s 2020 Program with ‘hot’ ticket specials that night only for the March event.

Learn more here.

Author Talk: Peter Fox

Raymond Terrace Library

Thursday 31 October

Former Detective Chief Inspector Peter Fox is a 36-year veteran of the NSW Police Force, during which time he investigated countless child sexual abuse cases in the Hunter Region of New South Wales. His book details some of the horrors that face our police every day, revealing cover ups, backlash and the lengths those in power will go to to avoid facing the the truth. Join him at Raymond Terrace Library this month– the event is free but bookings are essential: call 4988 0111.

More info here.

Tour and Taste at Macquariedale Organic Wines

November 2

Have you ever wanted to see what goes on behind the scenes at an Organic and Biodynamic winery and vineyard? Join the winemaker for a small group tour of Macquariedale’s vineyards and the winery.

In this tour you will learn how Macquariedale is using Organic and Biodynamic farming practices to grow grapes of exceptional quality. You will get to see how our wines are made and ask questions of the winemaker. Your tour will conclude with a guided wine tasting accompanied by local cheeses.

Numbers are limited so book early.

More info here.

wine being poured into a glass

HWC Writing Groups

Attendance is free as part of your membership. There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: 
Belmont, Maitland and Teralba.
Email us for more information 
or see the entire list of writing groups in the Members Area

February 2020 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter
Live Reading

Enjoy HWC member Diana Pearce’s poem which won a cash prize at our recent live reading:

On Being There
A response to George Gittoes exhibition Newcastle Art Gallery, March ‘20

Old wars and modern deprivations.

The dispossessed
sheltered only
between fragments
of lives once known,

Some
palms skyward
in supplication,
others grief-rigid.

Eyes are voids,
hollowed
by the triumph
of destruction

Despite my tears
I cannot truly comprehend,
I leave
in a shroud of anguish.

Above: Ann Blackwell

Above: Cedar Whelan

Above: Maggie Hall

Above: Diana Pearce

 

Notice of AGM:

Hunter Writers Centre members are invited to the upcoming Annual General Meeting. Youu are invited to attend the upcoming Annual General Meeting of the Hunter Writers Centre. We hope you will consider joining the HWC Board as we welcome your input and ideas. Details:

Wednesday 1st April, 2020
6 - 6.30pm

Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club - The Trophy Room
95 Hannell St, Wickham

At the AGM, members will have the opportunity to:
  • receive the minutes of the 2019 AGM held 17/04/2019
  • find out about HWC’s operations and finances and ask questions
  • speak about any items on the agenda
  • vote on any resolutions proposed
  • if you are interested in joining the board, ask to be nominated

Upcoming Events:

Here are wonderful literary activities and programs over the coming weeks:

Thursday 27/2 from 6pm: Heart Open: Mums at the Museum

Friday 28/2 – Sunday 1/3: Maitland Indie Writers Festival across 5 venues – learn all about self-publishing, meet authors who have self-published successfully, enjoy the poetry Slam, workshops and entertainment.

Wednesday 4th March: HWC Live Reading at Newcastle Art Gallery – bring your own works to share or write a piece in response to the current exhibition: George Gittoes: on being there

Saturday 7th March: Travel Writing with Walter Mason

Weekend 13-15th March: Scone Literary Festival

And don’t forget the 2020 Grieve Writing Competition is open for entries – calling for stories or poems about grief and loss

Select photos from the HWC Live Reading:

microphone

June 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter, Newsletters

Live Readings

 

microphone

New time, new space

Cash Prizes – $50, $100

We are thrilled to present our monthly live readings from July to November

at Newcastle Art Gallery

Join us July 2nd from 3pm

share your stories, poems, songs, scripts in response to James Drinkwater’s exhibition 

the sea calls me by name

 

HWC Workshops

July

Speculative Fiction Writing with Marianne de Pierres

Saturday 6th July, Wickham

de Pierres - author

Self Publishing – an online course
Nigel George is offering a half-price special to all HWC members for his new self-publishing course.
Visit the Indie Publishing Machine course page, select the Australian Version, and enter the code HWCJULY50 at the checkout to save yourself nearly $100.
You’d better hurry though – the discount is only available until the end of July!
 

person's hand holding an iphone showing rows of books

HWC Blog

Susan Francis , blogger, member of HWC

 

Thank you to our members who have blogged for us through March, April and May.

Read the following Literary topics

Speculative Fiction
- Our Spec Fic writers
Australian Literature 
- Susan Francis
Writing History 
- Christine Bramble
Crime Fiction 
- Megan Buxton

Graham Davidson, author

Christine Bramble - staff member and blogger

HWC Member News

 

HWC Member – Gail Hennessy

Gail’s book ‘The M Word’ is published by Girls on Key Press. It is available from the Poetry Portal Bookshop  

The M Word’ is a book of poetry that recalls my experience of postnatal psychosis and recovery. It was written to help break down the stigma associated with mental illness and provide hope for recovery.  It is available through the Poetry Portal of Girls on Key along with ‘Written on Water’.- Hennessy

.

The M Word - memoir by Gail Hennessy

 

HWC Member and Board Chair – Adrienne Lindsay

Adrienne Lindsay is the chair of Hunter Writers Centre. She has recently launched her business Cloudberry Writing

She provides fundraising advice, editing services and professional writing services.

.

Adrienne Lindsay, chair of HWC

 

HWC & Board Member, Wendy Haynes

Wendy was a founding member of Port Writers Inc. as both Treasurer and President. She is a copywriter and her website outlines the various services and advice she offers

Wendy Haynes - HWC Board member

Heart Open

Hunter Writers Centre funds the artists of Heart Open – literature, dance, fashion, art

The Heart Open Event 2019 at the Hunter Innovation Festival was a great success

Writing Opportunities and Events

 

HWC Facebook Groups

Exclusive facebook writing groups:

Hunter Writers Centre – celebrating literature in the Hunter

The Story Hunters – our Spec Fic writers keeping in touch between meet ups

HWC Poets – where our poetry groups gather online

HWC Writing Groups

Attendance is free as part of your HWC Membership

Newcastle, Belmont, Teralba and more…

See the whole list in the Members Area

Applications Open for KSP’s 2020 Residency Program

The KSP Writers’ Centre in the beautiful Perth Hills region of Western Australia is calling for Australian and international writers to apply to its 2020 residency program. The program offers paid annual positions to Established, Emerging and Next Gen (under 25 years) writers. The residencies include a two-week block to develop a manuscript at the inspiring KSP property, which is the former home of notable Australian author, Katharine Susannah Prichard.

In addition to the salary and space to write, writers receive a welcome platter to share with co-resident writers, transport assistance, breakfast supplies, networking opportunities, promotion, CV credit, complimentary writing group sessions and access to a thriving literary community, library services, mentoring, social events, and heritage walking trails. As part of the residency, writers are asked to present a workshop on a topic of their specialty and perform readings at a literary dinner hosted in their honour. Deadlines are 30 June, 28 July, 25 August for the various categories. Visit the KSP website for eligibility, selection criteria and more details about the program: https://www.kspwriterscentre.com/residency-program

2019 Aspiring Writers Mentorship Program

CBCA NSW Branch is pleased to announce that entries are open for the 2019 Aspiring Writers Mentorship Program (AWMP), sponsored by Scholastic Australia. The aim of this national award is to foster the talent of an unpublished author of children’s literature.  In 2019 the AWMP is open to picture book and junior fiction manuscripts. The Winner of the AWMP will receive the Charlotte Waring Barton Award and a mentorship with Scholastic Australia, to include two three-hour mentoring sessions with an author selected by Scholastic Australia, and a one-hour mentoring session with each of the following Scholastic Australia employees: an editor, a marketing communications manager and a publisher.

Entries close on Wednesday 31 July 2019.

Authors whose careers have been launched by this award include the best-selling/award winning Michelle Cooper, Kirsty Eager, Jacqueline Harvey and Oliver Phommavanh

Phil WIlliams HWC member Live reading at Newcastle Art Gallery Speaker at July 2019 to a full audience and art works

July 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter

First Tuesday Live Readings at Newcastle Art Gallery

Our inaugural Ekphrastic live reading was held last week.

23 pieces were heard and the judging was very challenging!

All the works brought the artworks alive.

Congratulations to Brian Noble, Nicole Sellers, Gail Hennessy and, people’s choice award winner, Jan Dean.

See upcoming dates and themes below

August – Tuesday 6th – acknowledging Grief Awareness month – share a poem or story about grief and loss

September – Tuesday 3rd – readings by you in response to the Kilgour Prize 2019 (opens August 3)

October: Tuesday 1st – readings by you in response to Robert Dickerson: Off the Canvas (opens August 24)

November: Tuesday 5th – readings by you in response to Wish You Were Here: landscapes from the collection

Seeking: Writing Group facilitator 

Maitland Writing Group

Meets: First Wednesday of the month 9-12

Are you interested in facilitating this group? You do not need to teach. You need to be a person with a big smile who makes newcomers feel welcome. Contact us if that is you. Maitland library is keen to host this HWC writing group to share your writing.

HWC Workshops

New Date – August

Saturday 3rd August

de Pierres - author

Self Publishing – an online course
Nigel George is offering a half-price special to all HWC members for his new self-publishing course.
Visit the Indie Publishing Machine course page, select the Australian Version, and enter the code HWCJULY50 at the checkout to save yourself nearly $100.
You’d better hurry though – the discount is only available until the end of July!
 

person's hand holding an iphone showing rows of books

HWC Blog

Susan Francis , blogger, member of HWC

Michael Tippett, writer

 

Our current blogger is member Professor Kelen
Thank you to our members who have blogged thus far

Australian Literature 
- by Susan Francis

Speculative Fiction
 - by HWC Spec Fic writers

Writing History
- by Christine Bramble

Crime Fiction 
- by Megan Buxton

 

Christine Bramble - staff member and blogger

HWC Member News

Anne Walsh HWC member

Member Anne Walsh is part of the amazing line up at Cuplet  July 11 – tonight!

Gail Hennessy and Jan Dean HWC members

Congratulations Jan Dean and Gail Hennessy who won awards at the HWC Live Reading at Newcastle Art Gallery

Congratulations, Nicole Rain Sellers and Brian Noble who won equal first at the HWC-NAG Ekphrastic live reading

Writing Opportunities and Events

Dying to Know Day – August 8th

An informative opportunity to see into the world of your local Cemetery & Crematorium. Learn about funeral planning, estate and wills and more.

Bookings Essential – RSVP to garry.bellenger@newcastlecrem.com.au

or call 4944 6000 Learn more

 

2019 Buzz Words Short Story Prize

Short story prize for adults writing for children

High Country Writers Retreat

Friday October 25 to Sunday October 27, 2019

2019 Writing NSW Grants Program

for regional writers 

 

2019 Aspiring Writers Mentorship Program

Open to picture book and junior fiction manuscripts. Entries close on 31 July

Odyssey House Victoria Annual Short Story Competition

1st prize $1000.

www.odyssey.org.au

Closes Friday November 1st

 

 

HWC Writing Groups

Attendance is free as part of your membership. 
There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: Belmont and Teralba.
See the whole list in the Members Area
Kilgour Prize finalist work Sebastian Galloway

August 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter
First Tuesday Live Readings at Newcastle Art Gallery

bring your readings

3pm, Tuesday 3rd September

The Kilgour Prize for portraiture (a few pictured here) is on display at Newcastle Art Gallery.

Come and read a poem or prose piece in response to one of the works on display. Click here for more portraits if you cannot make it to the gallery before our live reading afternoon.

Future dates:
October 1st - Robert Dickerson: Off the Canvas (opens August 24)
November 5th - Wish You Were Here: landscapes from the collection
Grieve Award Announcements
Grieve vol 7 book cover

Saturday 17th August, 2pm

On Saturday, go to this page to watch the video broadcast from the comfort of your lounge room

Listen to the top 25 award winning pieces read to you with captions

All selected authors announced and Grieve anthology Volume 7 is launched

HWC Workshops
Nigel George - Self Publishing tutor
Self-Publishing Success
with Nigel George

Saturday 31st August, 9 am - 3 pm Wickham

Sell More Books with Less Effort
This short course will help you overcome any limiting beliefs you have about self-publishing and put you on the right path to becoming a successful author.

Jacqueline Harvey - Childrens' Author
Writing for Children
with Jacqueline Harvey

Saturday 14th September

Do you harbour dreams of being the next JK Rowling or Andy Griffiths? If you love writing for children and want to spend a day learning the ins and outs of the business then this course is for you. Join bestselling author, Jacqueline Harvey as she covers topics including:
  • writing and editing tips,
  • information about publishers
  • knowing when your manuscript is ready to submit
  • the value of professional editorial assessment
  • garnering the publishers’ attention
  • dealing with rejection
  • what to expect when you land a deal
  • what happens when you’re published
Heart Open artist Vivienne Rose
 Heart Open
 
Hunter Writers Centre funds the artists of Heart Open – literature, dance, fashion, art.

Come along to the next event in the 2019 series:
Wednesday 14th August
Wickham Park Hotel
6.30 - 9.30

Featuring poet Ivy Ireland, 
dancer Vivienne Rose and 
musician Demi Mitchell
Demi MItchell Heart Open
Ted Bassingthwaighte, member of HWC

Ted Bassingthwaighte

Graham Davidson, author

Graham Davidson

HWC Blog

Our August blogger is
Ted Bassingthwaighte on 
True Crime Writing

Thank you to our Members who have blogged:

 Poetry
- by Prof. Christopher (Kit) Kelen

Australian Literature
- by Susan Francis

Speculative Fiction
 - by HWC Spec Fic writers
Graham Davidson

Writing History
- by Christine Bramble

Crime Fiction
- by Megan Buxton
picture of poet Christopher Kit Kelen

Prof Christopher Kelen

Megan Buxton HWC Board member

Megan Buxton

HWC Member News
Anne Walsh HWC member

Ellen Shelley (R) has a poem accepted into Raining Poetry Adelaide and has been published on Backstory

Nicole Sellers' poems Ode to my axial skeleton and Sun coat have been published in The Enchanting Verses Literary Review.
Anne Walsh (L) has been shortlisted for the ACU Prize for Poetry again this year
HWC member Ellen Shelley

Writing Opportunities and Events

2019 New England Thunderbolt Prize
open for entries until 7 October
2019 Buzz Words Short Story Prize
Short story prize for adults writing for children until Monday 2 September 2019
HWC Writing Groups

Attendance is free as part of your membership. There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: 
Belmont, Maitland and Teralba.
Email us for more information or see the entire list in the Members Area
High Country Writers Retreat
Friday October 25 to Sunday October 27, 2019
NPP 2019 book cover for Soft Serve

November 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter, Newsletters

NPP 2019 book cover for Soft Serve

2019 Newcastle Poetry Prize

The 2019 anthology is now available. 
Click here to purchase 

Congratulations, Chloe Wilson, winner of the Newcastle Poetry Prize for her poem 'Soft Serve'
read more about Chloe here

Chloe Wilson winner 2019 Newcastle Poetry Prize

Steve Armstrong NPP 2019 Local Award winnerSteve Armstrong, winner of the Local Award for his poem 
'Thirteen Ways to Know My Grandfather'
Kit Kelen, winner, HWC members award NPP 2019
Kit Kelen, winner, HWC member's award, 2019 NPP
Caitlin Maling winner Harri Jones PrizeCaitlin Maling, winner of the Harri Jones prize (for a poet under 36 years)
Audrey Molloy, 2nd Prize winner, NPP 2019
Audrey Molloy, 2nd Prize winner, NPP 2019 with Judy Johnson (L), judge

 

landscape picture of mountains from NAG exhibition

Live Reading at Newcastle Art Gallery

3pm, Tuesday 3rd December

Bring your stories, poems, essays, rants, songs, scripts 
in response to the Wish You Were Here exhibition.

Read these wonderful poems by our members from past live readings

Portrait by Grant Palmer

I just don’t get it at all
Colours so vivid
Black white and monotone grey
Faces staring out from the wall
Cartoon, photo, surreal
And completely indecipherable
No children to be seen
Displaying the joyless elements of life
So i sit and look with despair
Bereft of joy
No laughter or music
Absent the gathering of friends
So i wonder
What would I look like
My chaotic mind and darkest fears
Would I be monotone grey
A cartoon maybe or a shape
Not quite of human form
All alone
Just hanging

 

This is mine by Ellen Shelley

I see calm
Splashed across a coastal town…

Clouds shelter
Free and reachable

Angular images
Jut out like peninsulas
The anorexic arms of a city …

Melancholy stares
Are the shadows
left behind

And there are many
Even the moon
Spoons into its own

Deliberate & unsure

Reminds me of childhood
Overcast with a tinge of yellow

My mother’s sleeping
Made me nervous
My night light gone out

Everything appeared bigger
Ominous

A hallway stretched over creaking floors
            The space under beds.

My sister offered little
In the way of solace
Back then,

Always clinging on

Her fearful shouts
Unbolting the dark

by Luci Croci

PREAMBLE

haunted and haunting faces
not shaped in the mellow oval of a Modigliani
but contoured into a smooth triangle
eyes deep in the soft hypotenuse
see something the viewer cannot see

MOMENT

eyes intent not to see
ears alert not to hear
a name she knows

aimless in the garden
picking spent petals
laying her gentlest touch on the azaleas

her mind is deep in sunflower fields
under a cornflower sky
dreading fair weather lightning

her tension spans hemispheres
over countless physical barriers
subtle as a rainbow ending in a field

of bodies scattered among blooms
ready-made funeral wreaths
and the remains of a pyre

a Boeing shot down in a war with no boundaries
simple as milk on cereal
the last morning they spoke
Newcastle Short Story Award Open Now

Accepting short stories up to 2000 words

$7800 in prizes

Top works selected by our judges to be published in the 2020 Anthology 

Learn more

Newcastle Short Story Award 2017 Book Cover NSSA 2019 book cover  Newcastle Short Story Award Anthology 2016

HWC Blog - our members Blogging
 

Katrina McKelvey author

November blogger is children's author
Katrina McKelvey (L)

Watch out for her weekly blogs on Writing for Children
October blogger was social scientist and disability advocate
Lauren Hislop (R)
A humourous, engaging series on 
Living with Disability

Lauren Hislop Blogger on Disability

HWC Member News
Deb Arthurs host of Children's Writing groupMember, Deb Arthurs, who hosts the HWC Writing for Children group has written a blog for a number of months now. View the extensive topics she has covered.

HWC member Ellen Shelley

Member Ellen Shelley's poem Don’t Look Too Closely has been published in this month's Cordite
Read the poem here

Julie Simpson HWC Member

Member Julie Simpson was invited to contribute to Black Swan’s new anthology about intolerance. Her story ‘Born To Ride’ is about an elderly woman fleeing an evil aged care facility in a motorised wheelchair. It is published alongside a great contingent of Australian writers and the story originally comes from Julie’s book of linked short stories ‘Idle Hour in the County of Hope’ (Hodder Headline, 2000).

Susan Francis author

Member Susan Francis was interviewed on ABC’s Conversation Hour. Ahead of the publication of her book, listen to the interview here

Writing NSW Access for Regional Writers Grants

Round 2 of the regional writers' grants opens November 25. HWC can support your application. Members of HWC have been successful receipients of Writing NSW grants in the past.
Learn more
HWC Writing Groups 
 
Attendance is free as part of your membership. 
There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: 
Belmont, Maitland and Teralba. 
Email us for more information or see the entire list of writing groups 
when you login to the Members Area
Wollongong Writers Festival Nov 22-24 2019 Flyer
Wollongong Writers Festival 
 22-24 November 
 With the theme All lit up shining a light on the topics and parts of life that are too often ignored or repressed by polite society. All you need to bring is an open mind. 
 
creative writing course banner

September 2019 Newsletter

By | News, Newsletter

 

University of Newcastle logo
Join us
Level 8, 
NeW Space 
from 2pm 
Saturday 26th October at the

Newcastle Poetry Prize Ceremony

Program includes:
Live Reading
$25 000 Prize Pool awarded
and the launch of the 
2019 anthology

See the list of poets to be published in the 2019 anthology

 

University of Newcastle NeW Space Building

Level 8, NeW Space, UoN. What a view!

Judith Beveridge - poetry tutor

Poetry Masterclass with Judith Beveridge
(for members only)
will be held on the same day
Unfortunately, all places have now been booked

 

Grieve vol 7 book cover

Congratulations
to the HWC members whose work was selected for the 2019 Grieve anthology: 
Magdalena Ball, Gillian Swain, Ned Stephenson, Zoe Disher, Dan Shushko, Kathryn Fry and Ellen Shelley
These 7 HWC members were selected from hundreds of entries from all over Australia. Fantastic news.

The Grieve anthologies can be purchased here

Gillian Swain's award winning poem, 'The Coolest Thing Ever' was read by Megan Buxton. Watch it here.

Magdalena Ball's award winning poem, 'Negative Mass' was read by Judy Johnson. Watch it here
HWC Workshops
Jacqueline Harvey - Childrens' Author

 

2 places left:
Writing for Children
with Jacqueline Harvey

Saturday 14th September

Do you harbour dreams of being the next JK Rowling or Andy Griffiths? If you love writing for children and want to spend a day learning the ins and outs of the business then this course is for you. Join bestselling author, Jacqueline Harvey as she covers topics including:
  • writing and editing tips,
  • information about publishers
  • knowing when your manuscript is ready to submit
  • the value of professional editorial assessment
  • garnering the publishers’ attention
  • dealing with rejection
  • what to expect when you land a deal
  • what happens when you’re published
creative writing course banner
Creative Writing Course
If you missed the course back in February we are holding it again.
Memoir, flash fiction, the short story.
Monday 14th October
5.30 - 8.30pm

Cedar Whelan HWC member live reading at NAG

Live Readings at Newcastle Art Gallery

Another successful live-reading was held Tuesday 3rd September.

We awarded several cash prizes. 
It is very hard to select the best works!

Next live reading: 3pm, Tuesday October 1st
Bring your stories, poems, essays, rants, songs, scripts.

Live Reading future dates:

Tuesday October 1st NAG live reading – Robert Dickerson: Off the Canvas (sample portraits right)

Saturday October 26th (at NeW Space): Newcastle Poetry Prize Live Reading

Tuesday November 5th NAG live reading – Wish You Were Here: landscapes from the collection

Live Reading NAG

Clark Gorrmley Live Reading NAG

Julia Brougham HWC member and blogger about Nature Writing
Ted Bassingthwaighte, member of HWC
HWC Blog

 

Our September blogger is
Julia Brougham (L) on
Nature Writing

Thank you to our Members who have blogged:

 Poetry
- by Prof. Christopher (Kit) Kelen (R)

Australian Literature
- by Susan Francis

Speculative Fiction
 - by HWC Spec Fic writers

Writing History
- by Christine Bramble (R)

True Crime Writing
- by Ted Bassingthwaighte (L)
picture of poet Christopher Kit Kelen

Christine Bramble - staff member and blogger

HWC Member News

HWC Member Kaye Christensen

was selected as a winner in the recent NSW Seniors Writing Competition. 100 stories from NSW Seniors will be published in this Seniors’ Stories Volume 5. Kaye has been invited to attend the launch at NSW Parliament House later this year. This is one of several publications that have featured Kaye’s work. She has also been published in Sydney Newswrite magazine, Nambucca Writers’ anthology, in her local newspaper twice, local RSL Club publication about the ANZAC centenary and in MiNDFOOD magazine.

HWC Member Ellen Shelley has had a run of successes with her poetry:
It's Raining Poetry Adelaide with her poem Christchurch
Cordite Poetry Review with her poem Don’t look too closely
Highly Commended in the Philip Bacon Ekphrastic Awards for her poem Girl and the Moon
The Ross Spencer Anthology for her poem Abstract Expressionism

 

HWC Member Magdalena Ball also had poetry featured at It's Raining Poetry in Adelaide. Learn more here

Writing Competitions

HWC Writing Groups

Attendance is free as part of your membership. There are vacancies in most of our groups especially: 
Belmont, Maitland and Teralba.
Email us for more information 
or see the entire list of writing groups in the Members Area
pendemic pen-demic project cover picture

Pen-demic

By | Newsletter | One Comment

Members of Hunter Writers Centre are submitting works to our latest project.

Read the submissions received so far and, if you are a member, why not submit a piece in response to the prompts below?

pendemic pen-demic project cover picture

Pen-demic is a writing opportunity to take you away from your quarantine blues. Spread your love of words; share your creative writing . . .

Hey Hunter Writers Centre members and the Heart Open community, send us creative works in response to the written or visual prompts below and go in the running to win cash prizes.

First, we will publish your poems, stories, rants, scripts, opinion pieces, reflection essays here on this site.

Then we will reward your work with cash prizes – 3 x $50, and $100 to the best 4 works.

We have opened the comments section at the bottom of the page for you to leave your feedback for each other.

Guidelines for submission – let’s keep it simple and enjoy each other’s writing:

  • we welcome any number of (free) entries.
  • email your creative work to Hunter Writers Centre and we will publish.
  • max word limit: 500 words.
  • closes Noon, Tuesday 12th May.

Entrants are bound by our policies and guidelines including those relating to creative expression.

We wish all our members the very best during this difficult time. Keep writing. Stay in touch.

Prizes will be allocated by Karen Crofts (HWC), Alexandra Morris (Heart Open), Keighley Bradford (Creative Industries UoN postgrad student), Michael Byrne (The Press Bookhouse), Adrienne Lindsay (HWC President)

Not a member of HWC? Join here? Or submit your work to our current national writing competitions: Grieve and the Newcastle Poetry Prize

 

Written and Visual Prompts for your writing

"She wasn't doing a thing that I could see, except standing there leaning on the balcony railing, holding the universe together." 
— J. D. Salinger, A Girl I Knew

"I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart; I am, I am, I am." 
— Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar

"Sometimes I can feel my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I'm not living." 
— Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

“For her I bend, for you I break.” 
― Colleen Hoover, Maybe Someday

"At the still point, there the dance is." 
— T. S. Eliot, Four Quartets

"I could hear the human noise we sat there making, not one of us moving, not even when the room went dark." 
— Raymond Carver, What We Talk About When We Talk About Love

"When, however, one reads of a witch being ducked, of a woman possessed by devils, of a wise woman selling herbs, or even of a very remarkable man who had a mother, then I think we are on the track of a lost novelist, a suppressed poet, of some mute and inglorious Jane Austen, some Emily Bronte who dashed her brains out on the moor or mopped and mowed about the highways crazed with the torture that her gift had put her to. Indeed, I would venture to guess that Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman." 
― Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own

“That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet.” 
Emily Dickinson

“Nice people don't necessarily fall in love with nice people.” 
― Jonathan Franzen, Freedom

“...sometimes a start is all we ever get.” 
― Junot Díaz, This Is How You Lose Her

Edward Hopper, Morning Sun (1952)

hands reaching out of the swamp - picture for crime fiction article