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The Drop-In: Solicited Advice for Writers Starting Out, with Jinghua Qian

Onsite and online

23 September 2023, 1:00pm2:30pm
23 September 2023, 3:00pm4:30pm
24 September 2023, 1:00pm2:30pm
24 September 2023, 3:00pm4:30pm
Location Studio 1 (Saturday sessions); Online (Sunday sessions)

The writing world can feel daunting and mysterious, but you don’t have to stumble through it alone.  

The Drop-In is a group advice session where you can ask industry professionals all your burning questions about the agony, business and craft of writing.  

State Library Victoria is offering sessions with writers and editors Jinghua Qian (sessions 1-4) and Dr Arlie Alizzi (session 4). 

The sessions are open to all early-career writers, with priority going to First Nations, trans/nonbinary/genderfluid and international student writers.  

Please note: the register your interest form has now closed.

If you have any questions about The Drop-In, please contact our Creative Programs team at [email protected] or 03 8664 7520.


Who is this for? 

These sessions are best suited to people who have an established writing practice (even if no one else has ever seen your work!) but are either in the early stages of their writing career or transitioning to a new form or field of writing. 

All writers aged 18+ are welcome. In this first series, we are also prioritising writers who are First Nations, trans/nonbinary/genderfluid, and international students, because these are groups who are often excluded from or marginalised in the growing body of literature written about them. 

Is this a writing course? 

No, there’s no set curriculum or learning outcomes. Think of it as a library info desk for your queries about writing, editing, media and publishing. 

What will the sessions cover? 

Each session is different as it’s driven by your questions and needs. 

Topics that often come up include: 

  • How to impress an editor 
  • When to pitch an idea versus submitting a draft 
  • What to expect from the editing process 

But we’re happy to talk about whatever you like, from managing the business and admin side of writing through to the most common reasons why we’ve turned down pitches as editors.

About Jinghua Qian 

Jinghua Qian (ey/eir/em) is a writer whose words span prose, verse, audio and television. Eir work appears in The Guardian, The Saturday Paper, The Age, Overland, Meanjin and on ABC TV's China Tonight. Ey lives in Melbourne's west, on the land of the Kulin nations. 

About Arlie Alizzi 

Arlie Alizzi is a writer, editor and researcher, and a member of the First Nations arts collective, this mob. His writing has previously been published in the ABC, SBS, NITV, Overland, Sydney Morning Herald, The Saturday Paper and Un Magazine