In 1989 a small group of writers felt the need for a professional organisation that could support the needs of the Victorian writing community. They formed the Victorian Writers' Centre (VWC), which was incorporated later that same year.
VWC’s first offices were in Tasma Terrace, the National Trust (Victoria) building in Parliament Place, Melbourne. The organisation was recognised by the Victorian Government as the peak craft body for writers, receiving funding from the state and, eventually, federal arts funding bodies.
With an outstanding range of workshops and seminars, and offering manuscript assessments and presenting readings, VWC quickly developed a reputation as an excellent resource centre for emerging and developing writers. VWC also provided opportunities for writers to earn income through running those same workshops and seminars.
In the early 1990s, VWC relocated to the Broom Factory in George Street, Fitzroy, and remained there until the end of 2001. VWC found temporary accommodation at the Meat Market Arts Centre in North Melbourne, before moving to the heart of Melbourne at the Nicholas Building in Swanston Street in 2003. In late 2009, VWC became an integral part of the new Victorian Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas, the Wheeler Centre, which houses a group of Victorian literary organisatons in a wing of the State Library of Victoria. In December 2011, VWC was renamed Writers Victoria.
Since the beginnings in 1989, membership has increased from the low hundreds to over 3000, and it is widely recognised nationally for the excellent services it provides to the Victorian writing community. We have made a point of helping writers outside the mainstream, such as regional writers and writers from non-English speaking backgrounds. Our program of events is developed in response to the needs of our members with a diverse range of seminars, workshops, discussions and presentations.
Writers Victoria also works collaboratively with other literary organisations, festivals and events including the State Library of Victoria, Melbourne Writers' Festival, the Emerging Writers' Festival, and the Mildura Writers' Festival. In 2006 in a joint venture with the National Trust (Victoria), Writers Victoria extended its services to provide low-cost writers' studios, meeting and performance spaces at Glenfern Writers' Studios in the Melbourne suburb of East St Kilda. Studios are available for writers of all genres for periods of 1 to 6 months.