Spread the Word, Melbourne, UNESCO City of Literature and The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the traditional custodians of country throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land, water and community. We pay our respect to their elders past, present and emerging, and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
As part of the British Council’s UK/Australia Season, The Stories We Tell Ourselves brings together over 20 writers, publishers, agents and researchers from the UK and Australia, for an online series of conversations about the power of stories to help us reimagine, rethink and rebuild the world around us. The Stories We Tell Ourselves asks: what are the stories we need to tell each other? What are the stories we need to be listening to and reading? And, critically, whose voices are telling those stories and how do we get to hear them?
The Stories We Tell Ourselves will build new connections and publishing industry links between Britain and Australia and engage new audiences with the work of diverse writers and independent presses.
A series of creative written commissions and filmed dialogues between the writers will be released online throughout November. Panel discussions themed around “New Narratives, New Voices” in fiction and children’s/young adult writing will premiere on 30 November and 1 December respectively. The livestream panel event “Representation, Voice and Agency” will be broadcast on 2 December.
The Stories We Tell Ourselves is supported by the UK/Australia Season Patrons Board, the British Council and the Australian Government as part of the UK/Australia Season.
#StoriesWeTellOurselves / #UKAUSeason
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves, we invited six pairs of emerging and established writers, from the UK and Australia, to each pen a letter to their past or future self. Across a series of six videos, these writers respond to the theme ‘Who are we now?’ by speaking directly to versions of themselves that are still familiar, curiously anticipated or completely mysterious. Here, award-winning author of Bad Love, Maame Blue, and editor of the forthcoming This All Come Back Now – the world’s first anthology of blackfella speculative fiction – Mykaela Saunders, take turns reading each other’s letters aloud and then discuss the points of connection and difference in their responses.
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves, we invited six pairs of emerging and established writers, from the UK and Australia, to each pen a letter to their past or future self. Across a series of six videos, these writers respond to the theme ‘Who are we now?’ by speaking directly to versions of themselves that are still familiar, curiously anticipated or completely mysterious. Here, children’s and YA writer Burhana Islam, author of Amazing Muslims Who Changed The World and the My Laugh-Out-Loud Life series, and writer and black&write! junior editor Jasmin McGaughey take turns reading each other’s letters aloud and then discuss the points of connection and difference in their responses.
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves, we invited six pairs of emerging and established writers, from the UK and Australia, to each pen a letter to their past or future self. Across a series of six videos, these writers respond to the theme ‘Who are we now?’ by speaking directly to versions of themselves that are still familiar, curiously anticipated or completely mysterious. Here, Alex Falase-Koya, winner of Spread the Word’s 2019 London Writers Awards for the YA/Children’s category, and Alice Boyle, winner of the 2021 Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing for her forthcoming novel Dancing Barefoot, take turns reading each other’s letters aloud and then discuss the points of connection and difference in their responses.
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves, we invited six pairs of emerging and established writers, from the UK and Australia, to each pen a letter to their past or future self. Across a series of six videos, these writers respond to the theme ‘Who are we now?’ by speaking directly to versions of themselves that are still familiar, curiously anticipated or completely mysterious. Here, author of The Three of Us and If I Don’t Have You Sareeta Domingo and award-winning author of Foreign Soil, The Hate Race and the recently released How Decent Folk Behave Maxine Beneba Clarke take turns reading each other’s letters aloud and then discuss the points of connection and difference in their responses.
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves, we invited six pairs of emerging and established writers, from the UK and Australia, to each pen a letter to their past or future self. Across a series of six videos, these writers respond to the theme ‘Who are we now?’ by speaking directly to versions of themselves that are still familiar, curiously anticipated or completely mysterious. Here, bestselling and award-winning author of A Kind of Spark, Elle McNicoll and Cath Moore, whose debut novel Metal Fish Falling Snow won the Victorian Premier’s Literary award for YA fiction, take turns reading each other’s letters aloud and then discuss the points of connection and difference in their responses.
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves, we invited six pairs of emerging and established writers, from the UK and Australia, to each pen a letter to their past or future self. Across a series of six videos, these writers respond to the theme ‘Who are we now?’ by speaking directly to versions of themselves that are still familiar, curiously anticipated or completely mysterious. In this video, poet, hip hop emcee and author of Moments of Significance MC Angel aka Shauna O’Briain and award-winning emerging multilingual storyteller and editor Rafeif Ismail take turns reading each other’s letters aloud and then discuss the points of connection and difference in their responses.
Alex Falase-Koya is a London native. He has been both reading and writing children’s fiction since he was a teenager; anything at the cross-section of social commentary and genre fiction floats his boat. He was a winner of Spread the Word’s 2019 London Writers Awards for YA/children’s. In February Oxford University Press will publish the first two of six titles in a new early fiction superhero series, Marv, illustrated by Paula Bowles, as Alex’s debut. He now lives in Walthamstow with his girlfriend and two Kittens, and is also working on his YA debut.
Alice Boyle is an LGBTQIA+ writer, English teacher, and sometimes-photographer. She won the 2021 Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing with her YA romantic comedy, Dancing Barefoot, and her short story ‘The Exchange’ was published in the Black Inc. anthology Growing Up Queer in Australia. Alice has written for outlets including SBS Voices and The Stella Prize, has been highly commended for the Wheeler Centre’s Next Chapter initiative, and has worked on projects like Andrew Denton’s podcast Better Off Dead. Alice’s debut novel, Dancing Barefoot, is coming out in 2022 with Text Publishing. She lives with her partner on Wurundjeri land.
Born in Bangladesh, raised in Newcastle and currently residing in the outskirts of Manchester, Burhana Islam is a storyteller who is passionate about exploring themes of heritage, belonging, identity and faith in both her children’s and YA works. She studied English Literature at Newcastle University before deciding to become a secondary school teacher, sharing her love for stories with a new generation of curious, young minds. Burhana is also the author of Amazing Muslims Who Changed The World and the ‘My Laugh Out Life’ series.
Of Afro Caribbean and Anglo Irish heritage Cath Moore is a freelance writer, award winning filmmaker and educator. She has written for The Age, Huffington Post Australia and SBS Life and has also worked as a story developer for screen content. Cath is a published academic with a PhD in Danish screenwriting practices. Her debut novel Metal Fish Falling Snow won the Victorian Premier’s Literary award for YA fiction. She was a contributor to the anthology Growing Up African in Australia and is currently working on her second novel. Cath teaches creative writing at The University of Melbourne.
Elle McNicoll is a bestselling and award-winning novelist. Her debut, A Kind of Spark, won the Blue Peter Book Award and the Overall Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, as well as Blackwell’s Book of 2020. She is Carnegie nominated, and was shortlisted for the Books Are My Bag Awards 2020, the Branford Boase Award and The Little Rebels Award. Her second novel, Show Us Who You Are, was Blackwell’s Book of the Month and one of The Bookseller’s Best Books of 2021. She is an advocate for better representation of neurodiversity in publishing, and currently lives in East London.
Jasmin McGaughey is a Torres Strait Islander and African American writer and editor. She has completed a Master of Writing Editing and Publishing at the University of Queensland and is in the midst of a Master of Philosophy (in creative writing). In 2019 she was lucky enough to be a black&write! editor intern and win a Next Chapter Fellowship with the Wheeler Centre. She has been able to write for Overland, Kill Your Darlings, SBS Voices, Griffith Review and has had work highly commended for the 2020 ABR Elizabeth Short Story Competition and the 2019 Nakata Brophy Short Story competition.
Maame Blue is a Ghanaian-Londoner and author of the novel Bad Love, which won the 2021 Betty Trask award, was shortlisted for the Betty Trask Prize and was chosen as one of the top three debuts of 2020 by Cheltenham Literature Festival. Her short story ‘Howl’ was featured in the KYD New Australian Fiction 2020 anthology, and her story ‘Prodigal’ appears in the Speaking Volumes anthology Not Quite Right For Us. Her writing has also appeared in various places including Writers Mosaic, The Independent, Black Ballad, and Litro Magazine, and she is cautiously working on her second novel.
Maxine Beneba Clarke is the ABIA and Indie award winning author of over nine books for adults and children, including the critically acclaimed short fiction collection Foreign Soil, the bestselling memoir The Hate Race, the Victorian Premier’s Award winning poetry collection Carrying the World, and the Boston Globe/Horn Prize winning picture book The Patchwork Bike, illustrated by Van T. Rudd. She is the editor of Best Australian Stories 2017, and Growing Up African in Australia. Her forthcoming poetry collection is How Decent Folk Behave (Hachette, October).
MC Angel is a talented wordsmith performing as a spoken word artist and hip hop emcee as well as writing page poetry. She has been filmed by Red Bull TV, BBC3 and Channel 4 for the “Women in Hip Hop” project. She’s appeared on BBC 1xtra Live Lounge as part of their spoken word season and has performed up and down the country at festivals including Latitude, Secret Garden Party and Drop Beats Not Bombs. She is a former resident MC for Morning Gloryville, a sober movement which has seen her share the stage with the likes of Fat Boy Slim and Basement Jaxx.
Shauna O’Briain aka MC Angel is author of Moments of Significance, a non-linear memoir packed with poetry, prose, fragments of memories and mediations on life, philosophy and politics from an uncompromising voice. Told through Shauna’s personal experiences of growing up on an inner-city London council estate as a White Working Class Queer woman, Moments of Significance is an exploration of society and the political told through a very personal collage of experiences.
Mykaela Saunders is an award-winning Koori writer, teacher and community researcher, and the editor of This All Come Back Now, the world’s first anthology of blackfella speculative fiction, forthcoming with University of Queensland Press in 2022.
Of Dharug and Lebanese descent, and working-class and queer, Mykaela belongs to the Tweed Goori community. Mykaela has worked in Aboriginal education in various capacities since 2003, and at the tertiary level since 2012. Her research explores trans-generational trauma and healing in her community.
Mykaela’s fiction, poetry, essays and research have won the Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize, the National Indigenous Story Award, the Oodgeroo Noonuccal Indigenous Poetry Prize, the Grace Marion Wilson Emerging Writers Prize and the University of Sydney’s Sister Alison Bush Graduate Medal for Indigenous research.
Mykaela is working on two short story collections and a novel: Always Will Be, a collection of Goori-futurism stories which is part of a University of Sydney doctoral project; With Teeth, satirical and absurdist stories exploring contemporary Aboriginal experiences in the arts, activism and academia; and Last Rites of Spring, a psychedelic nightmare in novel form which was shortlisted for the David Unaipon Award.
Rafeif Ismail is an award-winning emerging multilingual storyteller and editor based in Boorloo, WA (colonially known as Perth). Rafeif’s work has been published in anthologies and literary magazines across so-called Australia and internationally, with a debut novel forthcoming. Deeply committed to creating diverse works, spaces and ethical storytelling, Rafeif is the current managing director of Djed Press, co-editor of Unlimited Futures: Speculative, Visionary Blak+Black Fiction (Fremantle Press & Djed Press, 2021), a participant in the 2020 AFTRS National Talent Camp and 2021 Equity Foundation Screen Diversity Showcase.
Sareeta Domingo is the author of The Three of Us (originally published as The Nearness of You), and creator, editor and contributing writer of romantic fiction anthology Who’s Loving You. Her novel If I Don’t Have You is shortlisted for the Diverse Book Awards 2021. She has also written numerous erotic short stories and an erotic novella with Pavilion Books, and her books for Young Adults are published under S.A. Domingo, including Love on the Main Stage, recently shortlisted for the Lancashire Book of the Year 2021. She has contributed to publications including, iNews, gal-dem, Black Ballad, Stylist and Token Magazine, and has taken part in events for Hachette Books, Primadonna Festival, Winchester Writers’ Festival, Black Girls Book Club and the Royal Society of Literature among others. She lives in South East London.
Sharon Duggal writes novels and short stories. Her second novel, Should We Fall Behind was published in the UK in late 2020 by independent press, Bluemoose Books and was shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature’s 2021 Encore Award, selected for Between the Covers, BBC television’s flagship book show and chosen as a Prima Magazine Book of the Year. Her debut, The Handsworth Times was The Morning Star’s Fiction Book of the Year 2016 and selected as the Brighton City Reads in 2017. Her short fiction appears in anthologies including The Book of Birmingham and Love Bites: Fiction Inspired by Pete Shelley and Buzzcocks.
Sharon has an MPhil in Creative Writing from University of Sussex and is one half of Brighton-based Radio Reverb’s long-running The Ruben & Sharon Show – the UK’s only regular radio show with a mum and son presenter team.
Aimée Felone is managing director of Knights Of – a commercial children’s publisher whose main focus is publishing inclusively by commissioning writers and illustrators from a diverse range of backgrounds, as well as hiring diversely. At Knights Of she has opened Brixton’s only children’s bookshop, Round Table Books, which exclusively stocks titles from underrepresented authors and illustrators.
Crystal Mahey-Morgan began her career as a freelance journalist at the age of 16 writing for publications such as the Guardian and The Face Magazine. While still 16, she promoted a series of open mic events which were a fusion of hip hop and more conventional forms of poetry and was a performance poet herself. At the age of 19 Mahey-Morgan became Marketing Manager for Raindance Film festival and soon after embarked on a career within Publishing, firstly working as Literary Assistant at Peter, Fraser and Dunlop (PFD), then joining Random House in 2009 working across contracts, sales, marketing and digital. Mahey-Morgan left Penguin Random House in 2014 to realise a long-held vision of bringing fresh voices and new stories to market in representative, inclusive and pioneering ways. In 2015 she founded OWN IT! – a storytelling lifestyle brand across books, music, art and film – which she runs with Creative Director Jason Morgan.
Marisa Pintado is the founder of the Ampersand Prize for debut writers, and the publisher of children’s and young-adult fiction at Hardie Grant Egmont in Melbourne. Marisa works with a variety of emerging, commercially successful and award-winning writers including Sally Rippin, Peter Helliar, Em Bailey, Melissa Keil and Erin Gough. The Ampersand Prize has rapidly gained recognition as Australia’s leading award for unpublished writers, and has launched the careers of numerous YA authors including the latest winners, Cally Black (In The Dark Spaces, 2017) and Rhiannon Williams (Little Ott Colter, 2018).
Rachel Bin Salleh is descended from the Nimunburr and Yawuru peoples of the Kimberley region of WA. Rachel is passionate about Indigenous people telling their stories and started her career in publishing at Magabala Books in the 1990s. In 2014 Rachel became Magabala’s Publisher and in 2018 she wrote her first book Alfred’s War, a poignant account of the contribution made by Indigenous servicemen.
Publishing Director of Ultimo Press, Robert Watkins, has over 20 years experience in the Australian book industry having worked in book retail, sales, marketing, publicity, publishing and more recently as Head of Literary at Hachette Australia. His love for a good story well told has led to publishing some of Australia’s most acclaimed contemporary authors, Maxine Beneba Clarke, Claire G. Coleman, Dr Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Sarah Schmidt and Peter Polites, to name just a few.
Valerie Brandes is the Founder and Publisher of diversity-focused, independent publishing house Jacaranda Books. In addition to publishing diverse voices from the UK, Jacaranda Books has introduced international voices from Africa, Asia and the Americas to the UK market, including books in translation. The company has published multiple award winners such as Irenosen Okojie (Butterfly Fish, Speak Gigantular), Fiston Mwanza Mujila (Tram 83) and Shola van Rheinhold (Lote).
Valerie is an ardent promoter of diversity and inclusivity in publishing, and a staunch supporter of social justice. She served on the committee for Equip and Fiction Uncovered, and has given talks across the UK on publishing, inclusivity and female entrepreneurship. In 2017 and 2018 she was named by Powerlist as one the 100 most influential Black Britons.
Emma Paterson is an agent at Aitken Alexander Associates. She joined in 2018 after five years at Rogers, Coleridge & White and began her career at The Wylie Agency. She became a member of the Booker Prize Foundation Advisory Committee and was made a Director of the agency in 2020.
Grace Heifetz grew up between Sydney and the Blue Mountains and has lived in London and San Francisco. Grace returned to Australia in 2002 and began working at Curtis Brown where she worked in a number of roles until mid-2019. In July 2019 she joined forces with fellow literary agent, Gaby Naher, to create Left Bank Literary where she represents clients such as Emily Maguire, Chris Hammer, Bri Lee and Nakkiah Lui. Grace is also on the board on the Blue Mountains Writers Festival and the National Young Writers’ Festival.
Dr Anamik Saha is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Media, Communications and Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London. His research interests are in race and the media, with a particular focus on the cultural industries and issues of ‘diversity’. He is the author of Race and the Cultural Industries, published by Polity in 2018. In 2019 he received an Arts and Humanities Research Council Leadership Fellow grant for a project entitled ‘Rethinking Diversity in Publishing’, which led to a report of the same name published by Goldsmiths Press in June 2020. His research has featured across a range of media, including BBC Radio, The Guardian, TES and The New Statesman. He was included in the The Bookseller’s 2020 list of most influential people in the book trade. His latest book Race, Culture, Media, was published by Sage in 2021.
Dr. Denise Chapman is a counternarrative storyteller, spoken word poet, and critical autoethnographer who lectures in children’s literature and early literacy at Monash University. She’s served as a literacy specialist focused on critical media literacy in Australia, Fiji, and the United States. Denise uses oral stories, children’s literature, poetry, and digital images as counternarrative windows for social change and liberation. She is currently exploring the lack of diverse transmedia stories for children and how teachers and parents see its impact on children’s imagined possibilities.
Denise has been a repeat guest on ABC Radio National, was runner-up at Poetryspective’s 2019 Retro Slam, and has also presented her artistic work at The Wheeler Centre, Melbourne’s Emerging Writers Festival, University of Melbourne’s Digital Studio, Melbourne Spoken Word & Poetry Festival, RMIT’s Present Tense non/FictionLab, 3CR, and the Community Reading Room’s Black Tourmaline.
In 2016, Denise received Monash University’s Faculty of Education Dean’s Award Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning. She also served as a Deputy College Head for Monash University’s Aquila College for non-residential students from 2017-2019 and has also served as a student advisor for Monash University Education students in the Early Childhood/Primary course.
Her most recent publication entitled “The Crooked Room: Intersectional tap dancing, Academic Performing, and Negotiating Black, woman, Immigrant” is a critical poetic autoethnography that shares her wayfinding experience as an African American woman academic working in a White-privileged Australian university, trying to survive systems of oppression unacknowledged by those within the university space.
Dr Melanie Ramdarshan Bold is an Associate Professor at the University of Glasgow, where she teaches and researches children’s and YA literature and book culture. Her research specialism is Inclusive Youth Literature and Book Culture, with a particular focus on the representation of people of colour, and the experiences of authors and readers of colour. Melanie has published widely on the topic; alongside numerous publications about contemporary book culture. Her book Inclusive Young Adult Fiction: Authors of Colour in the United Kingdom, 2006-2016, was published by Palgrave in 2019. Melanie’s interests in Youth Literature and Book Culture extends beyond academia. She was a judge on the UKYA book prize and the Scottish Teenage Book Prize, and is on the Advisory Boards for the CLPE Reflecting Realities project, the Pop-up Pathways into Children’s Publishing project, and Literature Alliance Scotland, and works with a number of cultural organisations across the UK.
Dr Radhiah Chowdhury is a Muslim Bangladeshi-Australian author, editor and advocate living on unceded Bidjigal Land in Sydney’s West. She has worked as an editor with Scholastic Australia, Allen & Unwin and Giramondo, and is currently a commissioning editor and senior audiobook producer at PRH Australia. Radhiah was the Australian Publishers Association 2019-2020 Beatrice Davis Editorial Fellow, awarded for her research project, ‘It’s Hard to Be What You Can’t See: Diversity Within Australian Publishing’. Radhiah is also one of the founders and moderators of the Australian First Nations and People of Colour in Publishing Network, a peer support and professional development network for First Nations and POC publishing professionals in Australia. Her picture book Jumble was published by Scholastic Press in December 2019, and The Katha Chest was published by Allen & Unwin in April 2021.
Erin Wamala spent almost ten years as the National Education Consultant and Education Marketing Manager at Penguin Books Australia. Since then, she has completed a Masters of Education (Teacher Librarian) and now works as a Teacher Librarian at Trinity Grammar School in Melbourne. She is also the owner of The Kids’ Bookshop and has recently completed her term as an Older Readers Judge for the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Awards. In 2021, Wamala joined the Melbourne Writers Festival Board.
Joy Francis is Executive Director at Words of Colour Productions, a Creative Development Agency for writers, artists, creatives and entrepreneurs of colour and collaborates with organisations and institutions who are ready to actively commit to systemic transformation programmes that inspire and facilitate inclusion and action.
Her diverse career covers journalism, policy development, academia, literature, digital enterprise, curation, production, film, PR and creative entrepreneurship, both here and abroad.
Joy is also co-founder and lead of Digital Women UK which facilitates female creatives, emerging and established entrepreneurs and women in tech to fully engage with digital entrepreneurship, run in partnership with entrepreneurship academic Dr Angela Martinez Dy and Loughborough University London.
She worked with the Media Diversity Institute to create the world’s first Diversity and the Media MA at the University of Westminster and was the inaugural project manager for the Jerwood Compton Poetry Fellowships.
Joy is an Eastside Community Heritage’s ‘Woman of Colour Trailblazer’ 2019, and she was selected for the UK’s first Museum of Colour’s People of Letters Digital Gallery 2019 as a literature influencer, alongside literary legends such as Bernardine Evaristo and Margaret Busby.
Premiere: Tuesday 30 November, 6.30-7.30pm AEDT / 7.30-8.30am BST
If we were to tell the story of publishing in Australia and the UK right now, what would it look like? Would the landscape we described be an equitable one? In order to change the world of publishing, we need to change the story being told, which should be easy in an industry of storytelling professionals – right?
Part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves project, this panel discussion features writers, researchers and publishers from Australia and the UK, discussing urgent questions around representation and inclusion in contemporary fiction publishing, and taking an honest look at just how much progress the industry has made.
Host Joy Francis will be joined by Sharon Duggal, author of The Handsworth Times and Should We Fall Behind and Maxine Beneba Clark, author of Foreign Soil and How Decent Folk Behave; Dr Anamik Saha and Dr Radhiah Chowhury, researchers from the UK and Australia respectively; Valerie Brandes, Publisher at Jacaranda Books; and Robert Watkins, Publishing Director of Ultimo Press.
This event will be captioned.
Premiere: Wednesday 1 December, 6.30-7.30pm AEDT / 7.30-8.30am BST
Children’s books provide some of our earliest experiences of the power of storytelling. We learn that we can imagine, create and design the worlds we want to see and live in. So, why do the stories we hear, and the people we get to hear them from, often fit within such a narrow spectrum? How can children’s and young adult publishers in Australia and the UK provide more space for underrepresented writers to thrive and tell their stories?
As part of The Stories We Tell Ourselves project, we’ll hear from Elle McNicol, author of A Kind of Spark; Cath Moore, author of Metal Fish, Falling Snow; Dr Melanie Ramdarshan Bold and Denise Chapman, researchers from the UK and Australia respectively; Aimée Felone, Managing Director of Knights Of; and Marisa Pintado, Publishing Director at Hardie Grant Egmont. Together, they’ll explore the need for more pathways to inclusion and diversity in children’s and young adult writing and publishing. Hosted by Erin Wamala.
This event will be captioned.
Livestream: Thursday 2 December, 7.30-8.30pm AEDT / 8.30-9.30am BST
Stories have the power to enact change in the real world by reimagining and reframing what’s possible. But the responsibility to create change can’t fall solely only on writers and the stories they tell. Behind the scenes, publishers and agents play a vital role in advocating for better representation in their sector.
This live-streamed panel discussion brings together publishers and agents from the UK and Australia to consider how the publishing industry can better facilitate access and inclusion. What initiatives already exist? Where are the areas for improvement? And what can individuals and companies working in publishing do, both together and separately, to facilitate necessary change?
This event will feature Crystal Mahey-Morgan, founder of Own it!; Rachel Bin Salleh, publisher at Magabala Books; Emma Paterson, literary agent at Aitken Alexander Associates; and Grace Heifetz, literary agent at Curtis Brown.
This event will be live-captioned.
The Wheeler Centre is Melbourne’s home for smart, passionate and entertaining public talks on every topic. Across 180+ events each year, and a unique collection of videos, podcasts and original writing, you’ll find some of our finest local and international writers and thinkers sharing their expertise, their imaginations and their ideas. We are dedicated to being the cornerstone of Australia’s literary activity: by supporting the health and vitality of the writing and ideas ecosystem, we continue to contribute to a deeper thinking society and enable the story-telling and story-making that builds communities around the sharing of ideas and conversations.
The Melbourne UNESCO City of Literature Office is tasked with serving the City of Literature. The Office role involves supporting the work and networks that exist, nurturing and developing new opportunities and networks, making connections across industry and audiences and championing all things Melbourne as a City of Literature. The Office has three broad areas of action that address the aims of the Creative City Network as well as the needs for Melbourne as a City of Literature: connecting; reflecting and supporting the City of Literature The Office works in three ways: strategic initiatives – one off programs that can cause a meaningful change in the City of Literature; partnership programs – working with partners to deliver programs that have impact and international exchanges – initiatives that begin here in partnership with another Creative City then travel around the network. The Melbourne UNESCO City of Literature Office is a joint initiative of Creative Victoria and City of Melbourne and is hosted by The Wheeler Centre.
About UK/Australia Season 2021-22
The Stories We Tell Ourselves is part of the UK/Australia Season is a joint initiative by the British Council and the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The Season highlights the breadth of partnership between Australia and the UK, and aims to deepen and extend cultural connections. The Season commences in September 2021, concluding in March 2022 in Australia and in December 2022 in the UK. The theme ‘Who Are We Now?’ will reflect on our history, explore our current relationship, and imagine our future together. The Season will feature programming for all ages, and will celebrate the diversity of cultures and languages in both countries. It will emphasise Australia’s First Nations voices, enable cultural exchange with Wales, Scotland, England and Northern Ireland, and the diverse societies that have emerged in both Australia and the UK through migration.