Five writers with disability will receive six hours of free mentoring with authors, assessors and industry experts through the third annual Write-ability Fellowships announced this week.
Fellowships were awarded to writers working in a range of styles and genres, including creative fiction, memoir and non-fiction journalism.
Emerging writer Naomi Fryers will work with outgoing Director of the Emerging Writers Festival, Sam Twyford-Moore, over the next two months.
“I am excited and thrilled to be a 2015 recipient of a Write-ability Fellowship,” Fryers said. “I feel extremely lucky to have been chosen as having potential in my chosen field of writing, particularly given the nature of the esteemed alumni of this program including Carly Findlay and Heidi Everett.”
Jax Jacki Brown will work with mentor Lefa Singleton-Norton to develop a series of topical articles for a range of online and print publications exploring disability issues, with a focus on intersectionality, pride and social justice.
Brown’s writing and performance work explore disability and sexuality, disability pride and queer pride, activism as a means of empowerment and marginality. “I try to subvert expectations whilst being entertaining,” she said. “The power of an accessible stage, of speaking publicly and openly is an important act of changing and challenging assumptions, as well as challenging myself.”
The remaining three fellowships have been awarded to Grant Cleary (with mentor Matthew Hooper), Ashlee Bye (with mentor Kate Richards) and regional writer Gail M Shell (with mentor Lyndel Caffrey).
“We received over 35 applications from all over Victoria, so it was a difficult task to narrow down the applications to just five fellowships,” said Writers Victoria Director, Kate Larsen. A partnership between Arts Access Victoria and Writers Victoria, the Write-ability program aims to support Victorian writers with disability who want to develop their skills and writing careers.
Writers Victoria acknowledges the generous support of the Grace Marion Wilson Trust for this program. Write-ability is made possible by the support of the City of Melbourne and the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation. Write-ability is also grateful for the previous support of the Copyright Agency Ltd, the Ian Potter Foundation, the Australian Government through the Australia Council and the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria.