Girls Writeup English Workshop
On May 11, the English Department sent two Year 10 students, Emily Denton and Zoe Blunt, to the Girls Write Up workshop sponsored by the State Library of Queensland. Zoe Blunt describes her experience:
Girls Write Up is a young women writers’ forum held annually by the Stella Prize featuring some of Australia’s greatest authors, and I was lucky enough to attend this year’s forum. It targeted social issues and roadblocks that upcoming authors may experience and taught girls how to tackle the issues of a flawed industry.
Girls Write Up was an open conversation with many successful authors from a range of different backgrounds, speaking out about a wide array of topics, making for an open-minded discussion that was completely inclusive of all identities. Throughout the day it challenged stereotypes and pushed the boundaries of modern-day expectations through a range of panels and workshops.
The first panel held was directed by Lorin Elizabeth, a masterful poet who guided a discussion about political views and the disadvantages she has experienced. I enjoyed and greatly related with the awkward experiences of being a teenage girl and learnt about composing engaging and heartfelt poetry. Nayuka Gorrie, an Aboriginal author, also spoke up about her experiences of being silenced by racism and how she handled them. This inspired the students who attended as they were able to see first-hand her tenacity to overcome hardship and challenges.
Year 10 student Zoe Blunt, who attended the workshop, had a great experience. “I had the great pleasure of taking part in a workshop held by Steph Bowe that encouraged diverse and different characters. It opened pathways in my creative writing abilities, as I learned about the importance of researching and including different ethnicities and backstories. I will not forget the engaging and thoughtful lessons of these workshops.
During the day I was both empowered and inspired by ten amazing authors from many walks of life with equally diverse backgrounds who taught me to be true to myself and my opinions. I overcame many roadblocks and fears that I had about writing through the exclusive guidance I received during this day and I eagerly look forward to next year.”