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

 

Onsite in Parramatta

Carol Amos, President of NEW Writers’ Group Inc, welcomed us to our first onsite Parramatta gathering in two years of Covid on Saturday, 26 March. We lined up outside for the group photo (inside it’s masks on always) and a kind passerby took this shot with Mihaela’s camera. Special thanks to UNE Sydney at Parramatta for this ideal venue. Kudos to Eric and Chris for tech support with Sue, Carol and the Cartwrights for ideas on Dialogue, and everyone for turning up on an unpredictably rainy day.  

GATHERINGS UNE Sydney at 28 George Street Parramatta
Queries:

Saturdays 3-5pm: Sign in 2:50-3:05 Ground floor entrance 
April 9, May 14, June 11,
July 9, August 13, Sept 10, Nov 12
Attendance: $5 for onsite gatherings
Free for financial members and carers
Please wear well fitted masks.

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.

 

Justine Youssef

Meet our art judge for Writing Parramatta 2021!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Being mostly writers, NEW Writers’ Group always needs an artist to make decisions on art!  Justine’s choice of Best Image – Book award for WP21 – will be announced on Saturday, 13th November at our Zoom Launch.

Justine Youssef is an artist currently living and working across unceded Darug and Gadigal Lands. Through moving image, performance, scent and installation, their practice engages with moments and places that reconfigure authoritative realities. They have been awarded the 2019 John Fries Award (The Copyright Agency) for their work ‘Under the table I learn how to feed you’, and held their first solo exhibition ‘All Blessings, All Curses’ at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney. Further to this, Youssef was a founding co-director of Pari, an artist-run space in Parramatta, and the Professional Practice Coordinator at the National Association for the Visual Arts.  Image Credit:  Joe Brennan

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 @

Felicity Castagna

Publishing Workshop with Felicity Castagna
 
Zoom
7th August, 2021, 3-5 pm
More info contact
 
 
 
“Felicity Castagna is a Lecturer in Creative Writing at the Writing and Society Research Centre, Western Sydney University. She publishes essays on home, suburbia, site-responsive art making and Australian literature and has a particular interest in collaborative and community- based art practice as well as the methodology of teaching creative practice. Her creative non-fiction and critical responses to literature and art are published both here and internationally on platforms such as The Sydney Review of Books, Electric Literature, LitHub, The Griffith Review and ABC radio and television.

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