Resources for new & emerging writers
So you’ve completed one of State Library Victoria’s teen writing boot camps. What’s next for you and your writing?
We’ve pulled together some opportunities for further learning, places and platforms to publish your work, writing prizes and fellowships, and other avenues to explore as you take your next steps as a writer. Go for it!
Magazines & online writing platforms
Going Down Swinging
Going Down Swinging publishes fiction, creative non-fiction, spoken word, commentary, essays, comics, poetry and experimental work online. It's also a print publication which takes submissions, and all contributors are paid.
Lip is an independent magazine for young women. It aims to provide a wide range of views and opinions and provoke thought about feminism, films, food, the future and the present. Lip is always looking for new contributors.
Rosie is a national harm-prevention initiative by the Dugdale Trust for Women & Girls. Its website publishes non-fiction articles written by young people on topics including activism, feminism, women’s rights, body and mind, relationships, and work and study. Rosie is always looking for contributors.
Scum is an online literary magazine that publishes fiction, poetry and non-fiction by young people.
Published by Express Media, Voiceworks is a national literary journal that features writing and art by Australians less than 25 years old. Voiceworks publishes fiction, nonfiction, poetry, art and comics, and writers are paid for their work.
Writing prizes & fellowships
The Hachette Australia Prize for Young Writers
Open to secondary school-aged students in Australia, the Hachette Australia Prize for Young Writers recognises excellence in the categories of fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry. The winner in each category receives $500 cash, as well as publication on the Express Media website and an acknowledgement in Voiceworks, Australia’s premier youth literary journal.
The Kat Muscat Fellowship
The annual Kat Muscat Fellowship offers professional development up to the value of $5000 for an editorial or writing project by a young person of an under-represented gender.
Little Stories, Big Ideas
Little Stories, Big Ideas is a flash fiction literary competition for Australian secondary school students (12 to 18 years old) with great prizes on offer. The competition runs four times a year, with a different theme each quarter for writers to respond to in any literary style they choose.
Local council opportunities
Some local councils offer competitions, awards, prizes and opportunities for young writers. Many of the larger councils offer cash prizes in their writing competitions. Check out your local council’s website to find out what opportunities they offer for young writers.
The Steph Bowe Mentorship for Young Writers
Open to writers under the age of 25, the Steph Bowe Mentorship for Young Writers is an initiative offered to a new writer in Australian children’s literature. The winner receives a 20-hour mentorship with an author, and 12-month memberships with Express Media and their state writers centre.
Youth writing organisations & festivals
Express Media is a national organisation providing support and development opportunities for young Australian writers. They offer workshops and awards, as well as programs for young writers including:
- Tracks: a travelling program for young writers that brings workshops, masterclasses and networking opportunities to communities across Australia.
- Toolkits: a 12-week online program for writers 30 and under that includes one-on-one mentoring from an established writer and networking opportunities with other young writers.
National Young Writers Festival
The National Young Writers’ Festival is an annual gathering for young writers to show work, share ideas and learn. The program is free and mostly aimed at 18 to 25 year olds, but they also offer a Younger Young Writers’ Program for 13 to 17 year olds. The 2021 festival will be a hybrid program, with some in-person events in Newcastle and some online events.
100 Story Building
100 Story Building is a social enterprise that aims to develop creativity and literacy for young people through workshop programs, online learning and community engagement. They offer student-led programs, and online and holiday workshops.
State writing centres
Each state in Australia has a writing centre, and some of these have programs targeted at young writers. This can be a great opportunity to meet other writers in your community.
- Victoria: Writers Victoria
- ACT: ACT Writers
- New South Wales: Writing New South Wales
- Northern Territory: Northern Territory Writers' Centre
- Queensland: Queensland Writers Centre
- South Australia: Writers SA
- Tasmania: TasWriters
- Western Australia: Writing WA.
The Wheeler Centre
The Wheeler Centre is Melbourne’s home for smart, passionate and entertaining public talks. Their aim is to drive the development and celebration of literature in Melbourne and beyond, and to engage people with books, writing and ideas. They host interesting events on diverse topics with local and international writers and thinkers.
Slam poetry performances
When you’re ready to give slam poetry performing a go, here are some places to explore:
- Australian Poetry Slam (national)
- Melbourne Spoken Word (Melbourne)
- La Mama Poetica (Melbourne)
- Slamalamadingdong (Melbourne)
- Afro Hub Poetry Slam (link opens in Facebook) (Melbourne)
- Littlefoot & Company Spoken Word Night (Melbourne)
- Words Out Loud (Ballarat)
- Girls on Key (Victoria & NSW)
- Bankstown Poetry Slam (Sydney).