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Check out the latest works from Alumni - Read all about exciting new release Alumni titles at Alumni Books.
Heather Rose, winner of the Eleanor Dark Fellowship in 2006 for her novel The River Wife, has been shortlisted for The Stella Prize and the Australian Literary Society Medal for her novel The Museum of Modern Love.
Caitlin Maling's second volume, Border Crossing, continues to showcase the development of an exciting new voice in Australian poetry.
Congratulations to Gabrielle Williams on the upcoming publication of her book My Life as a Hashtag.
"Thanks to Varuna the Writers' House, for an amazing fortnight. Two weeks' worth of concentrated writing, cooked meals and fireside chats with Anita Smith and Natalie Kestecher helped me get this book into a shape I was happy with."
The book will be published in June 2017
Congratulations to Betsy Roberts on the publication of her book Summer Feet.
Congratulations to Jane Rawson on the publication of her book, From the Wreck.
Debut Novel: The Competition.
Completed with the aid of a Varuna PIP Fellowship 2015.
Varuna alumni may be interested in the Artist with Disability Fellowship offered by the NSW State Government.
The Better Son (Ventura Press, October 2016)
1952. Tasmania. The green, rolling hills of the dairy town Mole Creek have a dark underside — a labyrinthine underworld of tunnels that stretch for countless miles, caverns the size of cathedrals and underground rivers that flood after heavy rain. The caves are dangerous places, forbidden to children. But this is Tasmania — an island at the end of the earth. Here, rules are made to be broken.
‘I’ve half-crossed where I shouldn’t have into your bird-world’
‘Pelicans have arrived for the fish muster…’ ‘filling the sky with feathered motion’
I was part of a Harper Collins residency in May 2013 and I am very pleased to say that the novel I crafted during my time at Varuna has been published by Penguin Random House. The ten days I spent with you in the Blue Mountains was crucial to Ice Letters’ development. I will always value the experience.
REFERENCE: Penguin Random House
Craig Cormick has won the Tasmanian Writers Prize with a short story ‘No Man is and Island’, that will be appearing in Award Winning Australian Writing 2016, and also has a piece in Best Australian Science Writing 2016, based on the book Ned Kelly Under the Microscope, that he worked on with editor Jody Lee at Varuna that won a Victorian Community History Award.
Alumna Helen Thurloe's debut novel, Promising Azra, is being published by Allen & Unwin in August 2016.
It’s about forced child marriage in contemporary Australia, based on extensive research and interviews.
Congratulations to Wilma Philipoom who is the winner of the 2017 Tyrone Guthrie Writer Exchange. The prize includes up to four weeks at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig, Irelannd as well as return air flight to Ireland up to the value of $2,500.
A Chinese Affair (Margaret River Press, July 2016) brings a new, exciting voice to the Australian literary landscape and is one of the few works of literary fiction in English to explore the experience of Chinese migration.
Alumna Sarah Armstrong’s third novel Promise is published by Pan Macmillan in July.
Aden Rolfe’s first collection, False Nostalgia, has been published by Giramondo. The book was developed with the support of the Dorothy Hewett Flagship Fellowship for Poetry from Varuna in 2013.
Her new work: The Teacher’s Secret, Suzanne Leal (Allen & Unwin, June 2016
A teacher with something to hide and a new principal determined to uncover the truth.
Stories of life from a remote Aboriginal community that sing with vivid and simple life, truth and power.
‘The Old Fella had said to me, “You’re a storyteller. You write, you write it down and tell people about our lives. We want the rest of the world to respect our Culture.”’
A piercing and witty portrait of a true maverick
At the outbreak of World War I, Lucy Paignton-Fox enlists in the Australian Army Nursing Service and leaves her family’s cattle station in the Northern Territory to join the war effort. During the Gallipoli campaign she serves in hospitals in Egypt, but when the Anzacs are posted to France she moves with them. A talented and spirited nurse, with dreams of one day becoming a doctor, Lucy finds more opportunities than she ever imagined: working alongside doctors and surgeons, sharing the soldiers’ dangers, helping them through their pain, and making lifelong friends.
Varuna Alumna Georgina Luck has received Creative Partnerships Australia MATCH funding to propel her short film into production.
One of the Top End’s best known women has written a book documenting life growing up on a Territory cattle station.
Alumni notables for Victorian Premiers Book Awards
Congratulations to Tom Williams on the publication of Wheelbarrow Ridge And Other Stories (Ginninderra Press, January 2016).
"I recently had an essay published in The Griffith Review. It was all about my experience of burnout and disillusionment with the Australian Education system. This essay has been well received and next Wednesday 10th February, I'm going to be on National radio speaking with Richard Fidler about my experiences. If you're interested, you can follow these links to find out more."
Congratulations to Alumna Michelle Michau-Crawford on the publication of her book: Leaving Elvis and other stories, (UWA Publishing, February 2016).
The Newcastle Writers Festival is delighted to announce that Alice Springs writer Michael Giacometti has been selected for the inaugural Regional Emerging Writer Residency, offered in partnership with The Lock-Up and University of Newcastle. Giacometti will spend two weeks in Newcastle in the lead up to the festival in April and will also participate in the program.
Silvery Elms, The Kaleidoscope, by Alumna Joanne M McCarron, was published by ASA, December 2015.
"One True Thing” by Nicole Hayes has been awarded the Children's Peace Literature Award, announced in October.
On the publication of Inspiring Australians: The first fifty years of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2015.
Book launch details below
"I want to let Varuna know that my manuscript ‘Temporary Spaces’ was one of the nine manuscripts shortlisted for Legend Press UK 2015 Luke Bitmead Bursary. The information is on Legend Press’s web site. The winner will be announced at a dinner in London on the 20th of this month.
Congratulations to Pam Mariko on the self-publication of RED MOON: SECRETS OF A SIXTIES SCHOOLGIRL
Congratulations to Alumni Tangea Tansley on her short story award and audio book production.
Congratulations to Alumna Leah Kaminsky on the release of her debut novel The Waiting Room, for which she won the Eleanor Dark Flagship Fellowship in 2007 (Random House, September 2015).
The Waiting Room captures the sights, sounds, accents and animosities of a country overflowing with stories.
Congratulations to Alumna Lisa Southgate on the publication of her short memoir Boothville in an anthology Oh Baby! True Stories About Conception, Adoption, Surrogacy, Pregnancy, Labor and Love (In Fact Books, 2015).
Congratulations to Alumna Lucy Treloar on the publication of her book Salt Creek (Panmacmillan, August 2015).
Varuna Alumnus Russell Eldridge's debut novel, Harry Mac, has been published by Allen and Unwin. Russell worked on Harry Mac during a Varuna fellowship in 2013, during which he was guided by local editor Jody Lee. The manuscript won the Byron Bay Writers Festival Litlink Varuna Unpublished Manuscript Award for that year.
Congratulations to Rebecca Poulson on the publication of her new book Killing Love, which she was working on at Varuna in January 2015 on a Varuna Fellowship.
Congratulations to Wollongong writer Chloe Higgins who is the winner of the ASA Ray Koppe Young Writers’ Residency at Varuna for 2015.
Congratulations to Alumna Christine Evans on the publication of her novel in verse, Cloudless, UWA Publishing, to be eleased September 1 2015.
Also in October 2015 the world premiere of her play Can't Complain with Spooky Action Theater in Washington, DC
Congratulations to Alumna Nicole Hayes on the publication of her new novel, One True Thing (Random House), which was released in May.
Congratulations to Eleanor Limprecht on the publication of her second novel, Long Bay, to be launched by Debra Adelaide. (see details below)
"Part of Long Bay was written at a Varuna Fellowship Writing Retreat in 2013."
Set in Sydney in the first decade of the 1900s, Long Bay is based on the true case of a young female abortionist who was convicted of manslaughter and served out her sentence in the newly opened Long Bay Women’s Reformatory – the first of its kind in Australia. The woman, Rebecca Sinclair, was pregnant when she went to prison.
Congratulations to Alumna Jane Rawson on her new book (co-authored with James Whitmore), The Handbook: surviving and living with climate change, which will be published by Transit Lounge on 1 September 2015
Alumna Helene Young's sixth novel, Northern Heat, was released on 27th May by Penguin Random House.
Congratulations to Daniella on her new book The Patrons.
The Soup’s Song - Mark O’Flynn
“From ekphrasis to lipogram, dramatic monologue to cut-up, historical vignette and traditional lyric to bold experiment, these accomplished and often striking poems always tell a good tale, with gentleness, wry humour, dark acceptance, and a twist to refresh the jaded eye. A fine and absorbing collection, full of the vanity of human wishes: a living, breathing commedia dell'arte.”
- David Brooks
Set to debut on ABC RN on Friday 26 June, A Thoroughly Wet Mess is an eight-part serial radio drama, written and directed by Varuna alumnus Aden Rolfe.
“We just launched our kickstarter for Mr Croc the kids show …”
Mr. Crocodile is a children’s animated TV series aimed at 5-10 year olds.
An Indrawn Breath, a second collection of poems by this poet, was completed with the assistance of a 2014 Varuna/Picaro Press Publisher Introduction Fellowship.
Varuna Alumnus Ross Donlon’s latest book of poems is unusual in that it was launched in Norway, on International Labour Day, May 1st.
Sjøvegen (The Sea Road) is a sequence of 50 tanka set in the industrial village of Ålvik in on Hardangerfjord in Western Norway.
Congratulations to alumnus Jim McIntyre on being awarded runner-up in the Victorian Premier's Unpublished Manuscript Award.
Congratulations to Varuna Alumna Leah Kaminsky on the publication of her book: Cracking the Code, Leah Kaminsky with Stephen and Sally Damiani (Random House Books, April 2015)
"Kaminsky seamlessly inserts Stephen and Sally's voices, allowing them to express the impact of their ordeal in their own words. She also emphasises that it was the Damianis' strength and determination that heralded this international breakthrough in medical science." - Dianne Dempsey in The Sydney Morning Herald
The Compassionate Englishwoman : Emily Hobhouse in the Boer War
by Robert Eales
The Boer War tends to occupy a fairly limited space on most modern history syllabuses in high schools and universities, in this country at least, and yet its role in the gradual demise of the British Empire, and its impact on the development of modern Africa have been significant. Many readers will associate the war with the film Breaker Morant, which proved to be very popular in Australia. He was tried and executed for war crimes committed while he was fighting for the British in South Africa. And it is the subject of war crimes that is central to the story of Emily Hobhouse.
Her book, Secrets, Spies and Spotted Dogs, is Winner of the 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Award in the Autobiography/Biography category.
Tyrone Guthrie Writer Exchange -- Winner Announced
Congratulations to Bronwyn Lovell who is the winner of the 2016 Tyrone Guthrie Writer Exchange.
Karen Darby Varuna Alumna offers Simpsons Bay Writers Retreat on South Bruny Island, Tasmania.
Our congratulations to alumna Deb Hunt on the publication of her book Australian Farming Families.
Children’s author and Varuna alumna Dianne (Di) Bates has had two residencies at Varuna and has now published over 120 books - latest books A Game of Keeps (Celapene Press, 2014), Nobody's Boy (Celapene Press) 2013 CBCA Notable and The Girl in the Basement (Morris Publishing Australia). Six more are scheduled for 2015. Di is the founding (and current) editor of Buzz Words, a twice monthly online magazine for anyone in the children’s book industry. It offers current markets, competitions, opportunities, interviews, personality profiles, publishing house profiles, books and websites – and much more.
The Australian Society of Authors (ASA) will accept applications for the annual Ray Koppe Young Writers’ Residency in April 2015.
Nominations are currently open for the CHASS Australia Book Prize, which aims to recognise and celebrate significant contributions made to the humanities, arts and social sciences (HASS) sector.
“The university I'm associated with, Southern Cross University, have published an article on the grant and the Varuna Fellowship I received to help get Bertha's story published!”
Thanks to Edwina Shaw for alerting her fellow writers to the 2015 Australia Council Grants.
Our congratulations to Alumnus Robert Eales on the publication of his book 'The Compassionate Englishwoman, Emily Hobhouse in the Boer War' by Middle Harbour Press.
Our congratulations to alumna Hazel Edwards who has re-issued her 'Sleuth Astrid' books as e books.
The Historical Novel Society Australasia (HNSA) will hold its inaugural conference at Balmain Town Hall on the 21-22 of March 2015 with its opening reception held at the State Library of NSW on the 20th. Entitled ‘The Historical Novel in Peace and War’, the conference will celebrate the historical fiction genre in a weekend of talks, panels, debates, book launches and readings with super sessions on social media, researching and writing historical fiction as well as manuscript assessments. The weekend conference will showcase 40 speakers and is peppered with international authors such as Kate Forsyth (our patron), Felicity Pulman, Jesse Blackadder, Juliet Marillier, Sulari Gentill, Sophie Masson, Toni Jordan and Colin Falconer.
HNSA is offering Varuna Alumni a special conference deal.
A huge hurrah also to alumnus, and Eleanor Dark fellowship recipient, John Connell whose debut novel The Ghost Estate is being published by Picador and launched in March.
Our congratulations go to alumnus Nigel Bartlett whose debut novel King of the Road is being published by Vintage/Random House and launched at Glee Books on 1 February, 2015.
Diana Jenkins has let us know the birth of her second boy, on Thursday October 23, went well: "We're well, we're thrilled - we're tired."
Congratulations to Diana and family from all of us at Varuna!!
For writers in Sydney The Rose Scott Women Writers' Festival will be held on Saturday August 16, 2014 at The Women's Club, and is a celebration of women's writing.
Featured authors at the 2014 Festival are Blanche d'Alpuget, Annabel Morley Judy Nunn, Deborah O'Brien, Susan Steggall and guest moderator is Lisa Forrest.
As you know here at Varuna we've been heads down landing the 2014 Varuna with Sydney Writers' Festival, which I'm pleased to say went extremely well - but that's another story - for now, coming up for air, we realise you're probably keen to know who the winners are for this year's Tyrone Guthrie Lottery.
And so without further ado ... (insert drum roll) ... the winners of the 2014 Tyrone Guthrie lottery are ...
Varuna Alumni, Kathy Sharpe and Eileen Naseby.
MidnightSun Publishing is currently raising funds to publish One Step at a Time, a gorgeous picture book about a boy and his baby elephant. What happens when elephant Mali steps on a landmine?
Including return airfare and up to four weeks residency at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Ireland (stunning!).
Roanna Gonsalves (Alumni member): "There is a gorgeous writers residency that runs every year in India, on the campus of a beautiful dance school (outskirts of the southern Indian city of Bangalore). It is open to writers from all over the world. I did a bit of work for them while I was in India and found out that they have never had any Aussie writers there and would absolutely love to have some. Applications are now open, deadline June 30, 2014. Wouldn't it be great if some of our Varuna Alumni apply?"
If conversation, as is often claimed, is one of the most pleasant and enriching pastimes in our society then conversations with Libby were always a source to me of anticipation and delight. Our shared passion for literature and the musical and visual arts were the foundation of the continuing discussions we had over a period of years, but which broadened out to encompass all kinds of other issues and areas of interest. Our shared connection to Varuna came about through writing and because of Peter’s appointment as Director. Although she had no official role Libby became a vital presence at Varuna and made many friends amongst the writers who came to stay over many years. Both in their own home and in the Writer’s House she and Peter were fine hosts, and she contributed through her calm and gracious presence to its welcoming and unique atmosphere.
Sadly Varuna Alumni member Corinne Pentecost passed away in the morning of last Saturday 15 February ... suddenly but peacefully.
Competitions, masterclasses and events....
Our congratulations go to alumna Tangea Tansley who was joint winner of the 2013 Todhunter Literary Award with her short story Middle-man.
This Short Story competition is an amazing opportunity for new undiscovered writing talent to pursue their dreams of publication and contribute to a great cause.
AFTRS Open, the short course division of the Australian Film Television and Radio School has screenwriting courses coming up in Melbourne and Sydney in 2014.
From Gabrielle Stroud:
I'm writing to let you know that Jessica Rose has died. I first met Jess at Varuna in 2005 and we became firm friends. She returned to Varuna this time last year (for a Writer in Residence week with Charlotte Wood as her mentor).
In August 2013, visual artist and Varuna alumni, Pam French was awarded the prestigious The Hill End Artist Residency.
Australian Book Review is delighted to announce that Michelle Michau-Crawford has won the 2013 ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize for her story 'Leaving Elvis'. David Malouf named Michelle as the overall winner at an event at Gleebooks last night. Michelle receives $5000 for her winning story, which was drawn from a field of 1200 entries.
Griffith REVIEW is pleased to announce the Novella Project 2, once again supported by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund.
A large part of Jane Clifton's latest crime novel, Flush, was written at Varuna in 2006.
My novel The Happiness Jar was shortlisted for both a Penguin Varuna Scholarship and the HarperCollins Varuna Awards for Manuscript Development in 2011.
Applications are now open for the $20,000, Rodney Seaborn Playwrights Award 2013 and for grants of up to $5,000 from the Rodney Seaborn Playwrighting Support Fund.
HarperCollinsPublishers ANZ is excited to announce the launch of its new online unsolicited submission program, The Wednesday Post, which will be going live on Wednesday 21 August 2013. Our goal is to uncover, develop and promote the most outstanding voices writing today.
Evelyn Conlon recently stayed at Varuna the National Writers' House, through the exchange program that Varuna has with the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Ireland.
I'm delighted to report that in June this year my book Red Moon Rising got accepted by literary agent Lyn Tranter of Australian Literary Management.
by Eleanor Limprecht (Sleepers Publishing, September 2013)
Eleanor Limprecht's latest novel What Was Left will be launched in September at the Berkelouw Books in Paddington and you are invited.
Helene Young's latest novel Half Moon Bay is out NOW!.
Deb Hunt's latest novel Dream Wheeler is out NOW!.
The ideal course for aspiring novelists living outside Sydney and Melbourne or unable to commit to a weekly class.
Responding to popular demand, Faber Academy’s six-month Writing a Novel course is now available as an intensive. This is a unique opportunity to experience the same content of our flagship course condensed into three long weekends in Sydney, starting October 2013.