Writers' Connect

Hands typing on keyboard and watch

Autumn 2016

I spent the past month in India travelling from New Delhi to Mumbai and then to Kerala and back to Delhi. One can’t help noticing and enjoying the great diversity of people, languages, religions, cultures and communities on the Indian subcontinent.

This issue of Writers Connect is the first in a series ‘Celebrating Diversity’. Libby Sommer writes about her long and winding road to becoming a published author in “I Was a High School Drop Out". Roz Bellamy tells us about her views on literature for LGBTI in an interview with Ell Lamb-Rundle and Sharon Rundle. Dr Jeremy Fisher, author, former Executive Director of the Australian Society of Authors and a UTS alumnus, tells us the story of “two gay detectives and their authors”. Ash Rehn’s thoughtful expression of his experience of “writing through grief” and giving meaning to his grief, gives us cause to think about how grief affects us all.

New books include My Year with Sammy by Libby Sommer, Teresa – A New Australian by Deborah Abela, and The Dirty Little Dog by Jeremy Fisher, details in our New Books section. Fisher’s book launch details are published under our Events heading. We also bring news of the 30th UTS Writers' Anthology Seeds & Skeletons which will be launched on 20 May at the Sydney Writers Festival. I’m thrilled to have a story published in this UTS Anthology and the announcement that ‘the foreword writer for the 2016 Writers' Anthology is the hugely successful author of The Rosie Project and his fantastic follow-up The Rosie Effect, Graeme Simsion!’

Our Events section has details of and a call for papers for FILLM, the Federation of International Literature and Languages Conference in Delhi in 15-17 March 2017, which includes The John Benjamins Prize for Linguistic and Literary Scholarship, a diploma and €1500, for the best paper presented by an up-and-coming scholar. Other prizes and competitions for writers, including the prestigious Elizabeth Jolley Short Story prize, are listed under our Competitions heading.

Another issue full of absorbing contributions from our UTS Writers’ Alumni for you. I hope you enjoy celebrating diversity with us.

Sharon Rundle
Chair, UTS Writers' Alumni
Editor, UTS Writers Connect

Full professional member: Australian Society of Authors; Institute of Professional Editors; Society of Editors NSW
Founding member: Asia Pacific Writers & Translators
Life member: Indian Association for the Study of Australia
Member: South Asian-Australian Writers' Network, British Council Alumni, Writing Fellow, FAW



I Was a High School Drop Out

Libby Sommer

Libby Sommer shares her winding journey to becoming a writer, as well as her new book My Year With Sammy.

Writing Through Grief

Ash Rehn

“The practice of writing is like observing a corpse. It can be beautiful,” says Ash Rehn, in this piece sharing his experiences of writing following the death of his father.

Two gay detectives and their authors

Jeremy Fisher

Jeremy Fisher explores the works of activists and authors Joseph Hansen and Michael Nava.

Interview with Roz Bellamy

Roz Bellamy

Sharon Rundle and Ell Lamb Rundle interview author Roz Bellamy on sexuality and gender in literature.