Regional Writers


Each year, Writing NSW partners with regional writers’ festivals to present ‘Inside Publishing’, a panel discussion that explores the inner workings of the publishing world. This event provides networking opportunities and information about the industry to writers in regional NSW.

Since its establishment in 2016, the event has attracted large audiences at the Southern Highlands Writers’ Festival, the St Albans Writers’ Festival, the Newcastle Writers’ Festival, Bellingen Readers and Writers Festival, and Words on the Waves Writers Festival, and also supported events at Mudgee Readers’ Festival and St Albans Writers’ Festival.

Speakers at past events have included Pantera Press publisher, Alison Green; Seizure cofounder, Alice Grundy; author and former UQP publisher, Craig Munro; literary agent and publicist, Benython Oldfield; publisher and literary critic, Geordie Williamson; Penguin Random House publisher, Meredith Curnow; and Giramondo poetry editor, Fiona Wright. The panels were chaired by Writing NSW CEO, Jane McCredie.

Grants for regional writers

Writing NSW Access for Regional Writers Grants were introduced in 2016 as a way to help writers in regional NSW access professional development. These $300 travel grants were awarded to ten writers each year and were made possible with devolved funding from Create NSW.

Past grant recipients include writers from areas such as Kyogle, Armidale, Lismore, Tamworth, Wagga Wagga and Dubbo. The travel grants assisted writers in accessing professional development activities held at the Write Around the Murray Festival, Yellamundie National First Peoples Playwriting Festival, New England Writers’ Centre and Hunter Writers’ Centre.

As part of the Writing NSW Access for Regional Writers Grant I attended the Pitch Perfect workshop in Armidale over two weekends … The chance to actually speak face to face to a publisher about my work has equipped me with skills I will continue to use throughout my career.
– Samantha Unwin, Tamworth

In addition to these travel grants, each year at least one Early Career Writer Grant was awarded a writer from regional NSW and one Emerging Writing Organisation Grant was awarded to an organisation in regional NSW or Western Sydney. Both grants were for $5000. Unfortunately the grant program has been indefinitely suspended.

Professional development

Writing NSW is dedicated to assisting regional writers access professional development. We do this through providing manuscript assessments, mentorship opportunities, online courses, and discounts for regional members on all of our courses and festivals.

Regional writers can undertake Zoom manuscript assessments with our talented assessors or, if internet connection is unavailable, assessments can also be conducted over the phone.

For writers who have already completed a first draft of their manuscript, the mentorship program will place them in contact with a professional mentor with experience in their writing field. Mentorships are usually held in 15 or 20 hour increments and mentors are available via email, Skype and/or phone.

Writing NSW is continuously expanding our online course program to reach more writers across New South Wales, with regional writers receiving early access to enrolment. Regional members also receive the concession member discount on all Writing NSW courses and festivals. View all our upcoming online courses here, and see our latest on-demand courses. 

Further resources

If you’re a writer in regional NSW, you may wish to contact the following organisations for further support and local arts information:

Writers’ centres

Writing groups

Visit our writers’ group page to search for groups in your local area.

Arts organisations

Regional Arts Network – Visit the Regional Arts NSW website for information on your local regional art organisation.

Local libraries

Contact your local library for more information about literary groups near you.

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