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October Newsletter 2023

Dear writers,

We hope you’ve been enjoying and finding inspiration for your writing in recent weeks. Please see below just a few of the opportunities available for Western Australian writers. Do you have exciting news to share? Please email us at so we can celebrate with you.

Congratulations, Karen Herbert

A massive congratulations to prolific crime writer and FAWWA member Karen Herbert who has just had her third work, Vertigo, published with Fremantle Press. Vertigo tells the story of Frances, a publish servant who unwittingly uncovers a trail of corruption that leads to the highest levels of government. Vertigo follows Herbert’s The River Mouth (2021) and The Cast Aways of Harewood Hall (2022). To purchase your copy please click here.

How to write history

Writers are invited to a class and networking event about writing history in Cottesloe on Sunday October 8 from 1pm to 4pm. The class will be held at the National Trust’s John Curtin Family Home and taught by author Josephine Wilson. For more information and booking details please click here.

Get behind the Old Fremantle Prison walls

The Literature Centre invites you to get behind the Old Fremantle Prison walls for two intimate evenings with popular and award-winning authors. Tasmanian crime thriller author Kyle Perry will speak on October 26 from 5.30pm to 7.30pm and Fremantle’s own crime thriller writer David Whish-Wilson will speak on November 16. For more information please click here.

Celebrate Reading Conference 2023

Join a stellar gathering of authors and presenters at Fremantle Town Hall on October 27 and 28. The 2023 Celebrate Reading Conference is to promote quality Australian literature for schools, libraries and bookshelves. Get up close and personal with remarkable Australian authors and illustrators in a festival-like atmosphere. For more information please click here.

October Sundowner Sunday, October 15 Members and friends are warmly invited to the monthly FAWWA sundowner on Sunday, October 15 from 4pm to 6pm at Tom Collins House in Swanbourne. Bring drinks and nibbles and a piece of prose or poetry to read in the open mic competition. Sundowners are the third Sunday of each month. To RSVP phone Lynne on 0473 215 144.

The winner of the September sundowner open mic competition was Patsy Millet for the following:

Keyboard Fall-out

Graduating from a childhood of accepting hand-me-downs from people known to me to a

diploma in the discards of strangers, I am completely at home in The Good Samaritans and

similar charity venues, wearing the garments that came from a previous forage. From

appliances and furniture to bunion-bent shoes and handbags reeking of deceased estates,

there are a few things I’d balk at but hardly any. Second-hand articles are all OK except for

one or two not generally considered saleable - mattresses come to mind. But there is

another I’ve just discovered. Computer keyboards!

Uniquely designed to receive but not give back, this item will defy the most vigorous upside

down shake or percussive force to release its entrenched detritus. The fall-out from the

process of typing will boggle the mind. What the hell do people get up to over and above?

Scratch, chew, crumble (big time), spit, pick, slough, snot, dribble and drool but a few

conjectures. It seems that seeking the elusive word can drive the writer to pluck at wool

wear, shred miscellaneous fibres, tear out clumps of hair (plus dandruff), break fingernails,

mine for earwax and even discard pieces of brain-matter. To jettison pubic hair requires

diving into a more abstruse realm of creative activity. Enough DNA lodged between the keys

to clone the previous owner, this item requires exorcism! If you decide to proceed, you will

need a broad brush, a long, narrow paint brush, a sharp poking instrument, a scraper, a

toothbrush, damp cotton-buds - a bottle of A-grade sanitizer and at least half a day.

Decent Beings Tour: Spoken Word Sundowner and Open Mic Friday, October 13

The KSP Writers’ Centre invites all to a sundowner and spoken word performances, starting with WA’s Australian Poetry Slam 2023 contender Skylar J Wynter, followed by Neshka Turner, Jeff Cottrill, and Paul R Kohn. For bookings please click here. It starts at 7pm. The KSP Writer’s Centre is at 11 Old York Road, Greenmount.

Book Launch: If There Is a Butterfly That Drinks Tears

Join Fremantle poet Natalie Damjanovich-Napoleon for the launch of her second collection described as one woman’s revealing and unvarnished account of her journey through motherhood. Natalie is an award-winning poet who lives, writes and teaches in Walyalup/Fremantle. The launch is at the Orient Hotel, Fremantle, on Friday, October 13 from 7pm. For more information please click here.

Do you enjoy reading historical fiction?

Book online sessions for The Historical Novel Society Australasia (HNSA) Conference to be held in Sydney on Saturday and Sunday October 21 and 22. The conference is in-person and online, showcasing dozens of authors over 20 sessions. For more information and to book tickets please click here.

Enter the 2024 Stella Prize

The Stella Prize is one of Australia’s most prestigious literary awards celebrating women’s writing. First prize is $60,000. Authors are invited to submit their novels in all genres published between January 1 and December 31 this year. Entry is $88. The deadline is October 12. For more information please click here.

Calling female poets

Applications are now open for the 2023 Helen Anne Bell Poetry Bequest Award – one of the richest poetry prizes in Australia. The $40,000 first prize is awarded for a collection of poems by a female poet reflecting Australian culture. It will be published by Vagabond Press. Entries close Monday, December 18. For more information please click here or email

Heroines Anthology

Submit poetry that reimagines women in myth, fairy tale, folklore or legend, or poems that tell women’s lost histories or untold stories. Entry fee $15. Closing date Saturday, October 28. First prize $500. Shortlisted entries will be published in an anthology. For more information and to submit your work please click here.

Indian Ocean Write Night

In need of Inspiration? Or simply a chance to write without interruption? Meeting every second Tuesday between 6-8pm at Mattie Furphy House are writers of all genres who gather in a relaxed and supportive environment. Work on your current project or write to the prompts provided. Phone Marshall Willan on 0408 620 235.

Book Length Project Group

The third Sunday of each month at Mattie Furphy House from 10am to 12pm is a time for writers to meet to discuss their book-length works. Writers of all genres and levels of experience are welcome. For details and bookings please click here.

Tuesdays at Mattie's with Kamille Roach

Acclaimed author Kamille Roach is available once a month for two-hour prose writing sessions at Mattie Furphy House. Winner of the 2013 BJ Patterson Short Story Award, Kamille has authored rural crime novels A Matchbox Full of Pearls, and Pine Creek. She is also an award-winning short story writer. For class dates and times please email kamillejr@iCloud

Volunteer with FAWWA

Do you have a few spare hours a week? We would love to hear from you. Your volunteer contribution will help us continue to offer opportunities for writers in Western Australia at our historic houses surrounded by natural bushland by the coast in Swanbourne. Please email

Join us!

If you’re not already a member, please join us! FAWWA is a non-profit community group which has been supporting Western Australian writers since 1938. Your membership will help us continue. For more information please click here.

Happy writing,

The Committee

The Fellowship of Australian Authors WA

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