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Indigenous writers network to be launched at Adelaide Writers’ Week

The First Nations Australia Writers Network (FNAWN), an advocacy and resource service for Indigenous writers and storytellers, will be launched at Adelaide Writers’ Week (AWW) on 2 March.

At the launch, writers John Harding, Jared Thomas, Alexis Wright and Ali Cobby-Eckerman will talk about what it means to be an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander writer and FNAWN chairperson Kerry Reed-Gilbert will officially launch the organisation.

FNAWN executive director Cathy Craigie told Books+Publishing that the organisation aims to develop the Indigenous writing sector ‘by working in partnerships and collaborations with festivals, government agencies, writers centres, arts centres, and the literary industry to strengthen Aboriginal writers and storytelling’.

Craigie said FNAWN plans to send Kim Scott, Anita Heiss, Bruce Pascoe and Ali Cobby Eckermann to the Australia & New Zealand Festival of Literature & Arts in London in May to lift their profiles and help them find publishing opportunities in Europe. The organisation also has plans to collaborate with Maori writers on an anthology and work on a translation project in India in late 2014/early 2015.

Craigie said the organisation, which was incorporated in September last year and is housed in the NSW Writers’ Centre, has been ‘operating in an establishment phase’ and ‘consulting the sector to assess how the organisation will look and what it should do’ after receiving a three-year funding grant from the Australia Council for the Arts 12 months ago. The idea for a national network was first developed after a symposium for Indigenous writers was held as part of the Guwanyi Indigenous Writers Festival in March 2011.

Craigie said the organisation is ‘not a new idea as there have been writers collectives before, but it has been a long time since there has been a structured national network’.

For more information about FNAWN, click here.



Category: Local news