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“I got published!” : Travel guides, career advice, health hacks and more

May 26, 2016 "I got published!" Australian Writers' Centre Team

Our AWC graduates continue to amaze us with their publishing success. So many are turning their freelance writing dreams into reality with their articles regularly featuring in major publications. And we love the variety of subject matters that they explore. Check out some of the recent accomplishments from our superstar graduates.

Laura McGeoch investigated ways to “Move Younger” in her Sunday Life magazine feature for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald. Her article “Game On” about HR professionals working at large scale sporting events such as the Olympics, was also published as a five page spread in HR Monthly magazine.

Linda Moon delved into the interesting concept of crowdfunding with her article “Crowdfunding helps Australian small businesses attract capital, customers and cachet” in The Sydney Morning Herald My Career section.

Emma Heuston-Levak featured in Kidspot with her story on “What the childfree really think of flexible working arrangements” asking the question – do parents really get preferential treatment in the workplace?

Ruth Dawkins provides the ultimate guide to Tasmania in TimeOut, with three articles exploring the small state’s hidden gems, the best of Hobart and the must-see North West coast.

Rose Howard had the tasty task of visiting a new Potts Point dumpling and cocktail bar with her article for Broadsheet, “The Girl Next Door“.

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Leigh Hopkinson shares what it’s like to be “Two Decades Naked”

May 25, 2016 The Writers' Room Australian Writers' Centre Team

Today we’re chatting with author Leigh Hopkinson about her new memoir Two Decades Naked. Now, we’re pretty sure even the staunchest of naturalists would struggle to spend that long starkers, so we thought we’d get to the bottom of this. (Pun absolutely intended.)

Hi Leigh, for those readers who haven’t read your book, can you please enlighten us?

Two Decades Naked is a memoir about the 20 years I spent stripping in Christchurch, London and Melbourne. It’s a celebration of the weird and wonderful world of striptease and the people who work in it.”

What made you decide to share this part of your life?

“I wanted to humanise the women, to confront some of the stigma that surrounds strippers and sex workers generally. I also wanted to provide readers with a sneak peek into a world that many might never get to visit – and to entertain them, because for me, stripping is primarily a form of entertainment.”

When you are writing, what’s your typical day like – do you have a writing routine?

“I’m usually up by 7.30am and off for a run or a yoga session before breakfast over a good book, then I’m into it.

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Ep 109 Breaking up with your novel, what to look for in a writers’ group and meet author Sue Whiting.

May 24, 2016 Podcasts Australian Writers' Centre Team

In Episode 109 of So you want to be a writer: breaking up with your novel, what to look for in a writers’ group, bogus writing rules you should ignore, and tax tips for writers who hate maths. Plus: discover the meaning of “stultify” and meet author Sue Whiting. Also: how to use other people’s Instagrams to build your author platform, and more!

Click play to listen to the podcast or find it on iTunes here. If you don’t use iTunes you can get the feed here, or listen to us on Stitcher radio.

Show Notes

Dear Novel: On Breaking Up with Your Manuscript

Thinking of joining a writing group? Ask yourself these 8 questions first

Should I join a writers’ group?

8 Bogus “Rules” New Writers Tell Each Other

Tax Tips for Writers Who Hate Math

Writer in Residence

Sue Whiting

Sue Whiting is the author of more than 60 books and has worked in the publishing industry for over 15 years. Sue’s nature storybook, Platypus, was a  Notable Book in the 2016 Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Awards. Her junior novel Get a Grip, Cooper Jones was a Notable Book in the 2011 Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Awards, and her picture book, A Swim in the Sea, won Speech Pathologists Australia’s 2014 Book of the Year.

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Word of the Week - Peripatetic

Word of the week

May 23, 2016 The Writers' Room Australian Writers' Centre Team

Peripatetic (adjective)

“This is a fancy word to mean ‘wandering’. It comes from the Greek word for ‘pacing to and fro’, but relates to someone who does that in a more organised way, rather than someone who bumbles about. So a peripatetic startup CEO might split his time between Sydney and Silicon Valley in order to create the networks he needs to make his business a success.”


This word can also be a noun – and can specifically relate to a follower of Aristotle’s teachings. To hear Valerie and Allison chat more about this and more on the world of writing, blogging and publishing, check out this week’s Episode 108 of our podcast, So you want to be a writer.

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AWC presenter Danny Parker shortlisted for 2016 CBCA Book of the year. Here are his writing tips!

May 23, 2016 The Writers' Room Australian Writers' Centre Team

The Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) have just announced their shortlist for the 2016 Book of the Year and we were so excited to see AWC Writing Picture Books presenter Danny Parker among the list of amazing authors. Danny’s acclaimed picture book Perfect, with illustrations by Freya Blackwood, has been shortlisted in the Early Childhood category. This is his fourth published picture book and third to be recognised by the CBCA. There’s no doubt Danny knows his stuff, and we couldn’t think of a more perfect person to give us three top tips for writing picture books.

 1. Do your research

No matter what genre of writing you focus on, it’s important to understand the market that you’re entering into. And in this case, that means surrounding yourself with books for little ones.

As Danny suggests, “Get into bookshops – into children’s bookshops. Libraries are also a fantastic resource. But have a look at what’s actually on the shop shelves, look at the subjects and what things are hot. Find out what almost every third book is about, and don’t write that story.

“In a sense, look for something that isn’t there, because although it might be on its way, it’s the gap in the market that you need to be thinking about.”


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May 23, 2016 Competitions Australian Writers' Centre Team

This month, we’ve gone memoir-mad, with not one, not two, not three, not four, not 10, but FIVE hand-picked memoirs to give away to one lucky winner!

We love a good memoir. Perhaps it’s the mixed bag of experiences – some across decades, others just days. Maybe it’s the way that each is written, very personal accounts that draw you in. And it could be the human story behind each one – and how we are all very interesting in very different ways.

We have FIVE memoirs for you to devour as we hit the winter months. Please welcome onto the competition stage:

  • Truth, Half Truths and Little White Lies by Nick Frost
  • In Other Words by Jhumpa Lahiri
  • One Foot on the Podium by Don Elgin
  • The Media and the Massacre by Sonya Voumard
  • Eat, Pray, Love Made Me Do It by a bunch of people inspired by Elizabeth Gilbert’s bestseller!

It’s a mix of humour, heartbreak and honesty – and the whole pack could be yours!

Here’s what you need to do to WIN this month:

Tell us your all-time FAVOURITE memoir and WHY you love it (in 25 words or fewer).

It’s that simple!

However, this is a game of skill, and we’ll be looking for a good “why” part of your entry if you want to take home the prize!

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Ep 108 Why you should consider writing longhand and meet publishing doyenne Marina Go, author of “Break Through: 20 Success Strategies For Female Leaders”

May 18, 2016 Podcasts Australian Writers' Centre Team

In Episode 108 of So you want to be a writer: The benefits of writing longhand and famous writers and their first word processor (can you remember yours?). Discover what “peripatetic” means and meet publishing doyenne Marina Go, author of Break Through: 20 Success Strategies For Female Leaders. Check out Litsy, the new social media app for book lovers, find out why you need a decent photo as an author, and more!

Click play to listen to the podcast or find it on iTunes here. If you don’t use iTunes you can get the feed here, or listen to us on Stitcher radio.

Show Notes

Three Ways That Handwriting With A Pen Positively Affects Your Brain

William Boyd: ‘I can only manage three hours’ writing before fatigue sets in’

Famous writers with their first word processors

Writer in Residence

Marina Go

Marina is General Manager of the Bauer/Hearst brands: Harper’s Bazaar, ELLE and Cosmopolitan, and the Publisher of Young Women’s brands Dolly and Shop. Her career began as a news journalist, before taking on the roles of Editor of Dolly, ELLE, Australian Good Taste and Sunday Life. Most recently Marina has held senior executive roles at a number of media companies.

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Win “A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald” by Natasha Lester!

May 16, 2016 Competitions Australian Writers' Centre Team

“Captivating, romantic and tragic, A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald follows a young woman ahead of her time amid the fragile hearts and glamour of jazz age New York…”

This week, one lucky reader is set to walk away with the popular new book from Natasha Lester, A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald. Natasha, besides being a successful Australian author, is also a presenter at AWC – so we’re doubly thrilled to be giving this one away!

Quick synopsis first. It’s 1920s New York and Evelyn Lockhart attempts to support herself through medical school by auditioning on Broadway. Add in romance, gin and jazz, and you have a recipe for a scandalous tale set during a glamorous bygone era!

To be in to win the book, simply tell us which decade of the 20th century you’d like to be transported back to and why!

Our favourite entry will win the book.

This competition has now closed – thanks for your entries!


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