FWF Round-Up: June 2017

Our co-chair, Cristy Clark, hosted a fabulous event in Lismore earlier this month with the fearless Tracey Spicer at NORPA. We’ll be making the audio recording available on our website soon, so keep an eye out for it.

Our next event will be at Melbourne Writers Festival and we can’t wait to tell you more once the program is announced on 18 July!

Finally, a huge welcome to our newest board members Foong Ling Kong and Louise Taylor, and our new marketing and communications manager Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen. For more about the women behind FWF visit our website.

Recommended Reading

The Uluru Statement from the Heart Last month, Indigenous peoples gathered at the Uluru First Nations Constitutional Convention. The result was a powerful statement that rejected tokenistic constitutional recognition in favour of ‘constitutional reforms to empower our people and take a rightful place in our own country’.

The Story of Jane Meet the Jane collective! This fantastic comic by Rachel Wilson and Alley Shwed details the first illegal abortion service to operate in the US in the 60s, run solely by women.

No Debate over Male Privilege In response to Triple J’s Hack Live ‘debate’ over the existence of male privilege, Ruby Hamad says that the question has been looooong answered.

Jagged Little Pill In Overland, Samantha Armatys looks at some of the reasons millennials are turning away from the pill as their favoured contraceptive.

Historic rejection letters to women engineers Adrienne Lafrance flips the lid on the astonishing trove of rejection letters to women engineering students attempting to enrol at university in the early 1900s. Prepare for some wild teeth clenching!

Ask me how I am For Kill Your Darlings, Kylie Maslen says that women are often medicated into submission, while receiving completely inadequate care.

Don’t (f**cking) ask me where I’m from Shu-Ling Chua writes about casual racism in her highly commended piece for the 2017 Feminartsy Memoir Prize.

Books to read if you like Wonder Woman If you’re still in a Wonder Woman frenzy, BookRiot has you covered with this handy list of books to love if you’re still feeling a little obsessed.

Women of colour are super heroes too Increasingly diverse audiences want more diversity of content, writes Yen-Rong Wong for QVWC.

The women who regret becoming mothers In The Sydney Morning Herald, Dilvin Yasa speaks to three women who think they made the wrong decision.

How an independent bookstore took on anti-feminist trolls and won Stephanie Convery takes a look at the backfire of the century, when trolls left hundreds of one star ratings on Avid Reader’s Facebook page and met with a swell of support from its loyal followers.

Recommended Listening

Sydney Writers Festival is a wrap! If you missed out or want to catch up, podcasts are starting to appear, including Brit Bennet‘s opening address on refuge, and an interview with Teen Vogue’s editor-in-chief, Elaine Welteroth.

We love listening to Myf Warhurst and Zan Rowe Bang On! and this month they discuss finding feminism – or not – in Wonder Woman and Sex and the City.

Race, culture, identity, difference… Beverley Wang‘s series It’s Not a Race is shining a light on the conversations white Australia is awkwardly and oftentimes reluctantly having.

Bitch recommends 21 Podcasts all Feminists Should Listen To. Need we say more?

Upcoming Events

6 July, Hobart: Stella prize winner Heather Rose in conversation with Stella judge and all round feminist good guy Benjamin Law.

8 July, Melbourne: Writing Character and Plot workshop with Kill Your Darlings founders Rebecca Starford and Hannah Kent.

18 July, Brisbane: We’d like to go to everything at Avid, frankly, but this one – a conversation with Pip Smith about her stunningly original debut novel, Half Wild – looks particularly fun!

4-6 August, Byron Writers Festival: The 2017 Program looks fabulous and features the likes of Julia Baird, Merlinda Bobis and Kate Grenville. On Thursday 3 August, The Rails is hosting a free event featuring Clementine Ford, Bri Lee, Miles Merrill and Lex Hirst talking about their ‘most controversial thought’.

11-13 August, Bendigo: Looking ahead, ‘cos we’re sure it’ll all sell out fast – the Bendigo Writers Festival has much to offer. The Welcome Stranger, featuring Rebecca Huntley and Susan Carland, looks particularly on point.


Non-fiction poetry journal Rabbit is calling for submissions for The Jazz Issue. Closes July 15.

Melbourne City Library is offering a bunch of free workshops ahead of the Lord Mayor’s Writing Prize – get in quick for short story with Sofie Laguna, memoir with Lee Kofman or editing with Toni Jordan. July 6, 20 & Aug 3.

The National Library’s Creative Fellowships are now open, seeking applicants who can use the library’s extensive collection in innovative ways. Closes July 28.

Literary mags are the lifeblood of our publishing ecoculture. Here’s a great opportunity to Take Two – that is, take out two subscriptions at a big discount.

What We’re Reading

Argosy is the beautiful debut collection of poetry, incorporating collage and photography by Bella Li.

Out now in non fiction, you can’t look past the latest Quarterly Essay by Anna Krien, The Long Goodbye: Coal, Coral and Australia’s Climate Deadlock; or an amazing collection, Unbreakable: Women Share Stories of Resilience and Hope. In Beyond Veiled Cliches: The Real Lives of Arab Women, Amal Awad goes behind the cliches to offer a look at the lives of Arab and Muslim women, touching on Australia. And, hurrah and joy, Judy Horacek has a new book of cartoons, her ninth: Random Life. In July we’re looking forward to How To Dress a Dummy, Cassie Lane‘s look at a life in modelling and the myriad ways women are told they are not enough.

As always, a heap of wonderful fiction out now from talented Aussie writers, including Melanie Joosten whose Gravity Well turns a telescope on relationships; Felicity Castagna‘s No More Boats, which explores the politics of the time of the Tampa; and The Gulf by Anna Spargo-Ryan, which takes you on an emotional and imaginative ride.

And if you’re in the market for some great kids books, highlights include:

YA: My Life as a Hashtag by Gabrielle Williams explores a tightknit group of teenage mates and their engagement with social media.

Junior: The highly anticipated new series from the author of the wonderful Billie B Brown series Sally Rippin, Polly & Buster is the story of an unlikely friendship between a witch and a monster and is sure to delight.

Picture book: The Lost Girl by Ambelin Kwaymullina is the gorgeous story of a little girl guided by Mother Nature to find her way home.


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