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November Newsletter

Thank you to those of you who came to the AGM at the end of October and to Sisonke Msimang who kindly gave a thoughtful and engaging presentation about her writing life in Perth.

The AGM serves as an opportunity to reflect on the achievements of FAWWA and its members. In particular we congratulate FAWWA’s Four Centres Emerging Writers’ Program alumna (2017-2019/2020) Julie Woodland who won the Stuart Hadow Short Story Award this year; Carol Millner (FAWWA Administrator) who has been offered a Katharine Susannah Prichard Writing Centre First Edition Fellowship; Andrew Levett (FAWWA Creative Writing tutor) who has been accepted onto the 2021 to 2023 Four Centres Emerging Writers’ Program at the Peter Cowan Writers Centre; Emma Bladen, one of FAWWA’s new cohort of Emerging Writers who won a prose prize in OOTA’s Spilt Ink competition; and Lisa Collyer and Ben Mason who benefitted from the Westerly Writer’s Development program this year. In addition we congratulate Helena Studdert (FAWWA Secretary), Patsy Millet (FAWWA Committee), Pat Johnson (past President) and David Alan-Petale (in-coming Committee member) who have all published books during 2021. The launch of Pat’s book Isla Rising is coming up on Sunday November 13.

The following Committee was elected to take FAWWA into the new year:

Karen Whittle-Herbert (President)

Helena Studdert (Secretary)

Vacant (Treasurer)

Machiel van der Stelt (Vice President)

Annie Wilson

Cindy Solonec

David Allan-Petale

Lynne Deperas

Peter Bibby

We are grateful to all of them for stepping up and so generously volunteering to support FAWWA with their time and expertise. Thank you too to outgoing Committee members: Tracey Gregory, Sally Gaunt, Patsy Millet, John Sun and Yeeda Topham.

Finally, I would like to thank Curtin University interns Noni Oldfield and Eleisha Perez whose work at FAWWA over the last few months has been invaluable. While the Curtin program is now at an end, we hope to see Noni and Eleisha continue with FAWWA on a special project in 2022, together with independent intern Lauren Pratt who is now working as Assistant Editor at Pulch Mag. We wish them well!

Coming up in November we have several special events which you can read about below. In particular I am looking forward to the in-conversation event with best-selling author and jillaroo Fleur McDonald who founded Breaking the Silence in 2017 to combat domestic violence in rural Australia.

Until next time,

Karen Whittle-Herbert

FAWWA President

P.S: Karen is also to be congratulated for publishing a novel this year: THE RIVER MOUTH. And it's a great read! Carol Millner (Admin)


Fleur McDonald, Friday @ Furphy’s

“Fleur is an authentic, down to earth and engaging speaker, who can talk about rural fiction, writing, autism, domestic violence, overcoming hurdles and country life.”

We welcome Esperance local Fleur McDonald to Friday @ Furphy’s on Nov 12! She will introduce us to her new book, Deception Creek, and we anticipate insightful discussion about writing, country life, and social issues. Doors open at 5.30pm. $10 Non-members / $5 Members. Register now:

Life Story-Telling with Helena Studdert

NOW FULL! Are you thinking of compiling a family history or recording your own story? From 6-7 Nov, Helena Studdert and Machiel Van der Stelt are running a Life Story-Telling weekend workshop to point participants in the right direction. The sessions focus on giving the tools, confidence and techniques needed to begin the writing process.

Although the workshop is fully booked, look out for reviews! You can round off the weekend perfectly by attending The Nonna Tales, a celebration of family and Italian heritage from poet Josephine Clarke and fellow musicians. See below for more.

The Nonna Tales

Poet Josephine Clarke and renowned musicians Antonio Giri Mazella and Kavisha Mazella are coming together at Mattie Furphy House for a night of music, story-telling and the spoken word. Come delight in soulful tunes and stories of family, culture, food and belonging from these vibrant and experienced creatives.

The concert will be held on Nov 7, from 7pm. Tickets can be purchased at the door: $30 Non-members / $20 Members.

Enter the TCPP

If you haven’t already, consider entering the 2021 Tom Collins Poetry Prize for a chance to win $1000 and a residency at Mattie Furphy House in 2022. With a Tom Collins Poetry Prize anthology on the horizon, we are really excited to see what comes through this year’s competition. Please pass on the invitation to your friends, family, and fellow writers who might like to enter: visit to see the full terms and conditions and download an entry form.

Need space for your group?

If you’ve yet to soak up the atmosphere of Mattie's at Allen Park in Swanbourne, now is the perfect time! Many writing and community groups have benefited from the quiet, conducive environment of Mattie Furphy House for fellowship and creative focus. If you can see yourself or a group of people meeting at Mattie's for workshops, we would be glad to host you! These beautiful houses are open to anyone who needs a space to write, talk, socialise and pursue creative endeavours. Currently, there is some space available at Mattie Furphy House on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Please contact the office at for more information about costs and booking.

Listings Nov/Dec

You can now register for events online by visiting the FAWWA Events and Workshops webpage (not obligatory!)

  • Tues Nov 2 - Indian Ocean Write Night Mattie Furphy House, 6pm. $10 Non-members, $5 Members. Open to all.

  • Nov 6-7. Life Story-telling Workshop. Weekend workshop with Helena Studdert and Machiel van der Stelt at Mattie Furphy House. $75, pay on the day. Contact for program and details.

  • Sun Nov 7. The Nonna Tales. Josephine Clarke, Antonio Giri Mazzella, Kavisha Mazzella. Mattie Furphy House, 7pm. $30 Non-members / $20 Members.

  • Fri Nov 12. Fleur McDonald in conversation with Karen Whittle-Herbert Friday @ Furphy's event. From 5:30pm, Mattie Furphy House. $10 Non-members / $5 Members.

  • Sat 13 Nov - Isla Rising Book Launch 3-5pm, Mattie Furphy House. Wine and nibbles provided, all welcome.

  • OOTA Poetry Class with Ross Jackson - Friday 5 Nov, 19 Nov, 3 Dec 10am-12pm, Mattie House. $30 Non-members / $25 Members

  • OOTA Prose Class with Dr. Ashleigh Angus - Fri 5 No, 19 Nov, 3 Dec 1-3pm, Mattie House. $30 Non-members / $25 Members

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