Vale Thomas Thorpe

It is with sadness we advise that our friend and colleague Thomas Thorpe has passed away, shortly after his wife Jennifer. To the family we extend our deepest sympathies.

Our poet colleague, Romanian Australian Loredana Tudor-Tomescu, knew Thomas through the literary group Poetry at Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts. This led to Thomas becoming a contributor to Mihaela Cristescu’s Romanian/Australian Anthologies along with several other SMSA members.

 

Distance prevented Thomas from readily attending NEW Writers’ Group Inc’s meetings, however on one memorable occasion (before the pandemic halted onsite celebrations) he came via three sets of transport to a NWG Inc Anthology dinner in Parramatta – to our delight.

Thomas had a wonderful reading voice, and we wish we had heard more. He was ever keen to promote and support other writers, bringing to poetry conviction, warmth and understanding.

Here is the brief description of himself that Thomas wrote for one of the Romanian/Australian anthologies – Between Dusk and Dawn.

Born and grew up in England.  A geographer by training. Officer in Royal Air Force. A ‘ten quid Pom’, arrived in Australia by ship in 1962. One of the foundation staff of Australian Catholic University. A lover of poetry since school days, who occasionally puts pen to paper.’

 A poem by Thomas Thorpe will be included in Street Musicians, the 7th edition of Mihaela Cristescu’s Romanian/Australian bi-lingual anthologies, by permission of his family.

 Video link of Thomas Thorpe  reading at Romanian Rhythm in Sydney, State Library of NSW, 2016

 

Valentine’s Spoken Word Comp – Book Award

On 12 February, we took up our annual challenge of ‘rating’ completely different works of two minutes duration. We enjoyed all the contributions and the judge would have been happy to give out multiple book awards, but there was only one copy. Congratulations to Geneva Valek who won in a photo finish. We welcome into our Pop Up Zine 2022 all entries (except those being developed as longer works for a future we hope to hear about!)

Book Award – Girls in Boys’ Cars by Felicity Castagna – which won the 2022 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for YA.

NWG Inc in 2022

Photo: Mihaela Cristescu

NEW Writers’ Group Inc will soon be back at work!  In January the committee will draw up a calendar for 2022. No onsite venue yet, but the following events and projects are decided:

  • Our first gathering will be on Zoom in February, date to be confirmed.
  • ZineWest will open for entries from 1st March and be launched in October.
  • Romanian/Australian Anthology (Stay a While) launch is 12 March at the State Library of NSW. 
  • Writing projects for our regular anthologists and other Western Sydney creatives are being discussed.
  • The FB page Writing Parramatta will continue. We have a backlog of Q&A’s to post and will seek more from local artists and writers.
  • Gatherings – whether on zoom or onsite – will be held at least once a month for open mic, workshops and tutorials.
  • In the monthly sessions we plan to include short Q&A’s with individual writers.
  • We will run additional sessions with a specific focus – details to come. 

Writing Parramatta Spotlight

NEW Writers Group Inc secretary, Mihaela Cristescu chatted on 17 November, to Jim Taggart and Darryn Cape-Davis, on Spotlight, Alive 90.5 about our Writing Parramatta project. Jim and Darryn read poems by Marina Robins, The Tropics888 and Peter Cartwright.  Mihaela brought to the studio a Covid-delayed birthday cake to celebrate the first year of the show!
Listen to the podcast here 

 

Image: Reflections by Marina Robins won Best Image Award in WP21.

Writing Parramatta Awards

Saturday, 13th November, 2021, we gathered on Zoom to explore the collection of poems, images and stories published during this year on Parramatta themes. This project is part of Writing Parramatta 2021 which has been supported by a City of Parramatta Creative Economy Grant.

BOOK AWARDS:
Best Image: Reflections by Marina Robins; Runner-up: Light and Dark of Parramatta Park by Dannielle Viera. Judge Justine Youssef.
Best Prose: The Song by Geneva Valek; Runners-up: Run to Parra-dise by Nic Lesley and Going To Ground by Augusta Supple. Awarded by S.E. Crawford, Carol Amos and Christopher Sammut.
Best Poem: Jo’n’wicksy by Les Wicks; Runner-up Mars Hill Cafe by Belinda Curby. Awarded by S.E. Crawford, Mihaela Cristescu and Peter Cartwright.

Slide Images: Reflections: Marina Robins; Light and Dark of Parramatta Park by Dannielle Viera.

 

ZineWest 2021 Awards

Thanks to all the contributors who created the 15th edition of ZineWest. Copies available at our shop. If you have a piece published in ZW21, select a product that includes your free copy.

Awards announced at the Zoom launch, 16th October: 

ART – Judge Elizabeth Chang, Curator and Artist Development, Parramatta Artists Studios

BEST IMAGE AWARD: SANDRA BORRI for Galah
RUNNER-UP: ERIN MACNAUGHT for Hands #1

WRITING – Judge Luke Carman, author and lecturer, Writing and Society Research Centre WSU

FIRST Place and Best Prose: CHRISTOPHER SAMMUT for Breathe
SECOND place and Best Poem: PETER CARTWRIGHT for The Time
THIRD place GENEVA VALEK for The Rat (prose)

HIGHLY COMMENDED –
MYRA KOCH for Piano for Sale (prose)
NORM FAIRBAIRN for On the Lake (poem)
JO MULARCZYK for Lies of Love (prose)

EDITORS’ AWARD
PETE SHMIGEL for Geronimo’s Daybreak

Image: Christopher Sammut



ZineWest 2021 Launch

SATURDAY 16TH OCTOBER 2021 
3-4:30 ZOOM – Readings, Awards with Elizabeth Chang and Luke Carman

In 2022 we hope to add back in – food and giant book raffle!

Our cover features Galah, by one of our contributing artists, Sandra Borri.  Poems, stories, images and a little reminiscence re 15 years of finding interesting and diverse creativity in Western Sydney. More info @

A few good words …

 

Free writing workshop led by Parramatta author Felicity Castagna
Saturday, 30th October 3-5pm.
Contact us for the Zoom link, see email below.

We’ll look at micro fiction – the writing where each word is important but not necessarily prominent – the opposite of clutter and shouting and cliché – the super short memorable piece that is great training for our bigger works.

Would you like your original piece reviewed during the session?

Send us up to 3 Haiku¹ or one short poem max nine lines, or one work of prose max 100 words. Include your name, location and a couple of lines about your writing interests. You can paste the writing into the body of the email or send as an attachment.

Due: 22nd October 

¹Haiku: we don’t insist on 5/7/5 but advise against anything longer.

This workshop has been supported by a City of Parramatta Creative Economy Grant.

Cover Image: Felicity’s latest book

 

 

ZineWest 2021 Launch

Elizabeth Chang, Art Judge, and Luke Carman, Writing Judge: Fifteenth edition of ZineWest

Zoom: Saturday, 16th October, 2021, 3-5pm – details below.

AWARDS – winners are not notified prior to the launch.
 
Writing:
A generous supporter has donated cash prizes for 2nd & 3rd place.
 
  • First Place = $400  (Co-sponsor Writing & Society Research Centre WSU)
  • Second Place = $300 (Private donor)
  • Third Place = $200 (Private donor)
  • Highly commended writers will receive book awards (Giramondo, Sweatshop, private donors)
  • Editor’s Award: Book prize (Giramondo)
Images
  • Best Image = $100 (private donor)
  • Runners up = Book prizes

NB Award winners are not notified prior to the launch.

LAUNCH DETAILS – Zoom link available early October.
 
  • Opening: Carol Amos, President NWG Inc 
  • Artwork – Comments and awards: Liz Chang 
  • Writing – Comments and awards: Luke Carman
  • Readings
  • Editors’ writing award

Free entry. Copies: $15. Sales online due to Covid.
Contributors’ first copies are free, but we will need to recoup postage.

ZineWest 2021 is part of the Writing Parramatta 2021 project which has been supported by a City of Parramatta Creative Economy Grant.