*It doesn’t feel like that long ago that I wrote a blog post on opportunities for emerging writers over the age of 35 (the cut-off age for eligibility in the Vogel Unpublished Manuscript Development Award) to gain a toehold for their writing in the publishing world.
But now I’m part of a new category and once again find myself ineligible for writing competitions and opportunities. I wanted to apply to the ASA Emerging Writers’ and Illustrators’ Mentorships, in dire need of a mentor to help steer my unwieldy ship of a manuscript onto a smoother course. The guidelines stipulate the entrant must be unpublished. Ok. A physical book with my name on it hasn’t been published and won’t be until 2018–do I still qualify? I emailed the ASA.
Nope. I’m ‘published’. Does this mean that I have ’emerged’ then, if I am no longer ’emerging’?
Not according to the Literature Board of the Australia Council for the Arts. Though there has been a shake-up of the grant funding programs and streamlining of eligibility criteria, an ’emerging’ writer is usually seen as someone with one published book.
So I am a ‘slightly more emerged than just emerging’ writer.
Are there still any opportunities I can enter with an unpublished manuscript?
There sure are. It’s a learning curve, but I thought I would begin to build a list of opps–mostly residencies and grants–that recently emerged writers can access.
- Katharine Susannah Prichard Fellowship Program: 12 places per year, 2-week residencies in WA
- Katharine Susannah Prichard Residency Program: 2 positions per year, 2-4–week residencies in WA
- Australia Council for Arts – International Residencies
- Varuna Second Book Fellowship Program: 2-week residencies, apply by end July
- Bundanon Trust Artist-in-Residence Program: residencies, apply by end June
- Iceland Writers Retreats Alumni Award: 3 free spots available for a panel of workshops in April in Iceland
- Baltic Writing Residency: 3-4 weeks in Sweden, say no more, apply by Jan
- Endeavour House Writer in Residence Program: 2 weeks in Canberra with $5,000 stipend, apply by 6 March
- Australia Council for Arts – Development Grants for Individuals: $5,000-$25,000 for professional development, incl residencies, mentorships; 3 rounds a year: Feb, Jun, Oct
- Australia Council for Arts – Arts Projects for Individuals: $10,000-$50,000 for creation of new work; 3 rounds a year: Feb, Jun, Oct
- Ian Potter Cultural Trust: up to $7,000 for overseas professional development; 3 rounds a year: Jan, May, Aug
- Copyright Agency – Ignite Career Fund: up to $5,000 for structured professional development, incl. residencies, mentorships; 2 rounds a year: Mar, Aug
- Womentoring: free mentoring for women writers by women writers
Once that foot is in the door with the first published manuscript the focus shifts to sustaining a career through structured mentorships, residencies and retreats, and grant funding.
I will continue to add to this list as I discover new and exciting opportunities to support my current incarnation of ‘writer’.