News / Announcing the Recipients of the 2019 Writing NSW Grants

Congratulations to the recipients of the 2019 Writing NSW Grants!

Writing NSW has announced the recipients of its 2019 Writing NSW Grants for early career writers, emerging writing organisations, and a writer & scientist working on a joint project.

Four early career writers will receive a grant of $5000 to support creation of new work, with projects including a novel exploring the historical and cultural contexts that give rise to exile, and a collection of experimental short stories based on life in regional Australia.

Heroines Festival, based in the Illawarra region, will receive a $5000 grant to develop their 2020 program and anthology showcasing women writers.

The $2000 grant for a writer and scientist will assist a collaboration providing a literary account of quantum mechanics through the vehicle of poetry.

The Early Career Writer Grants attracted a record number of submissions in all major genres, including theatre, screen, poetry, children’s literature, fiction and non-fiction. Applications showed an impressive diversity of themes, cultural backgrounds and geographic location. The judges noted at least another 20 applicants from the individual writers and emerging writing organisations categories deserved to be supported.

The Writing NSW Grants are offered by Writing NSW with devolved funding from Create NSW.

‘The judges were impressed by the quality and diversity of applications,’ said Writing NSW CEO Jane McCredie. ‘Over the four years these grants have been offered, they have made a huge contribution to the vibrant literary culture of our state, supporting dozens of new writers and projects.’

Early Career Writer Grants

Meera Atkinson (Balmain) for a hybrid work of fiction, Luna Alaska. This ‘post-fiction’ novel brings a poet’s lyrical sensibility to a story that sweeps from 18th-century convict Australia to the technologised, capitalised, traumatised world of 21st-century Sydney.

Eda Gunaydin (Cherrybrook) for her non-fiction collection, Root and Branch. This collection of essays and other non-fiction writing explores diasporic inheritances with fierce humour and deep intelligence.

Paul Shields (Horse Station Creek) for a collection of experimental short stories, Cob-O-Corn. The collection brings wry humour and a unique voice to its portrayal of regional life.

Michael Caleb Tasker (New Lambton) for his novel, White Horses. This well researched and finally crafted work portrays the world of women’s prisons with sensitivity and empathy.

Emerging Writing Organisation Grant

Heroines Festival (Woonona) for its events and publications featuring women’s stories. The intelligently curated festival features a diverse range of speakers, genres and issues and is associated with an annual anthology of short writing by women.

Writer & Scientist Grant

The Writer & Scientist Grant was awarded to author Bernard Cohen and quantum physicist Andrea Morello for their project, Quantum Words, Electron Metaphors. They will use literary and scientific understandings to create a poetic account of quantum mechanics and a quantum account of poetic language, developing a teaching model to be presented to high schools.


Judges for the Early Career Writer and Emerging Writing Organisation Grants were writers Shankari Chandran and Pip Smith and Writing NSW CEO Jane McCredie. The judge for the Writer & Scientist Grant was Sherry Landow of Writing NSW and Rob Brooks, Scientia Professor of Evolutionary Ecology at the University of New South Wales.

2019 Access for Regional Writers Grants (Round 2):

Writing NSW is offering up to five grants of $300 to subsidise travel costs for writers in regional NSW seeking to access professional development to further their writing or career skills. Applications will open on 25 November and close on 8 December. Learn more about our Access for Regional Writers Grants online.

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