Queensland Writers Fellowships

Three $15,000 Queensland Writers Fellowships will provide support for leading Queensland writers to develop a writing project towards publication over a 12 month period.

The Queensland Writers Fellowships are sponsored by Arts Queensland and State Library of Queensland, and supported by Queensland Writers Centre.

Congratulations to the 2017 Fellowship recipients:

Zenobia Frost (photo by Anna Jacobson)

Zenobia Frost for Museum of Dwellings

About the author

Zenobia Frost is a writer from Brisbane, Australia. Her work has appeared in Overland, Cordite, States of Poetry, Scum, Woolf Pack, and the Hunter Anthology of Contemporary Feminist Poetry. She was recently shortlisted for the inaugural Red Room Poetry Fellowship, while her first collection, Salt and Bone, was shortlisted for the 2013 Thomas Shapcott Prize and commended in the 2014 Anne Elder Awards. Zenobia is a Master’s candidate at QUT, researching the poetics of transient domestic spaces in Queensland. www.zenobiafrost.com.

About the project

Museum of Dwellings will be a full-length collection of vivid poems, supported by research at the John Oxley Library, documenting lost Brisbane landmarks and architectural quirks. The project includes production of a handmade printed artefact: a foldout zine serving as an uncanny Brisbane “tourism guide”. Museum of Dwellings focuses on the poetics of intimate urban space, with a particularly Queensland flavour. Museum of Dwellings will document and foreground the author’s vision of Brisbane: it’s strange, sprawling suburbs, nuanced communities, and often-startling stories.

Judges' comments

It was the ambition and design of Zenobia Frost’s proposed poetry collection A Museum of Dwellings that impressed the judges. The collection aims to examine some of the most pressing concerns in our relationship with space and place in the 21st Century, including psychogeography, travel, urban development and displacement, and this with a very Queensland focus. Frost’s poetry is both elegant and philosophically sophisticated and the panel agreed she is likely to produce a work of lasting significance.

Linda Neil

Linda Neil for People Are Kind

About the author

Linda Neil is an Australian writer, songwriter and documentary producer, and the author of two non-fiction books, Learning How to Breathe (UQP, 2009), and the travel memoir All Is Given: A Memoir in Songs (UQP, 2016). She has a PhD in creative writing and has taught creative writing and cultural studies at the University of Queensland. Her radio documentaries have been shortlisted for the UNAA Media Peace Awards and awarded gold and bronze medals at the New York Festivals. Her script for the multi-award-winning documentary The Long Walk of Brother Benedict was nominated for best documentary script at the 2011 Australian Writers’ Guild Awards. She was a Griffith Review Fellow in 2017.

About the project

People Are Kind is a work of creative non-fiction that tells the story of how life changes following the diagnosis of a serious illness and how it is possible to discover and develop a community of support as a person adapts to a life of disability. It follows on from Linda Neil’s recently published book, All is Given (UQP, 2016), which is a book of interconnected stories of travel and music set in various parts of the world. The project further develops a hybrid writing form combining memoir, documentary techniques, transcribed aural interviews, and travel writing, as it explores the connections between places and the people who inhabit them. It also integrates, through transcribing interviews, the voices of the many people who contribute to the well-being of others. These people, many of whom work in industries and work formats that are inaudible and invisible to many, include those who work in disability care, health professionals, musicians, writers and artists around Australia who attempt to transcribe lives that face struggle, loss and disability, as well as others who face daily challenges and find the courage to endure.

Judges' comments

The variety and quality of Linda Neil’s previous writing in addition to the artistic vision of her proposed creative non-fiction work impressed the judges immensely. People Are Kind concerns a woman coming to terms with serious illness and re-calibrating her life. The work promises to be both stylistically inventive and philosophically provocative in its study of a compulsive traveller compelled to become stationary. Throughout her career Linda has demonstrated the ability to tackle complex moral subject matter, not only with fine moral sensibility but with an artist’s aesthetic sense, and People Are Kind promises to deliver once more.

Mirandi Riwoe  (photo Red Boots Photographic)

Mirandi Riwoe for A Gold Mountain Woman

About the author

Mirandi Riwoe’s debut novel, She Be Damned, was released in 2017 (Legend Press, UK; Pantera Press). Her novella The Fish Girl won Seizure’s Viva la Novella V. She has been shortlisted for the Josephine Ulrick Short Story Prize, Overland’s Neilma Sidney Short Story Prize, and the Fish Short Story Prize. She has also been longlisted for the ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize and CWA (UK) dagger awards. Her work has appeared in Best Australian Stories, Review of Australian Fiction, Rex, Peril and Shibboleth and Other Stories. Mirandi has a PhD in Creative Writing and Literary Studies (QUT).

About the project

A Gold Mountain Woman is a literary novel set in Queensland in the Gold Rush period of the 19th century. The novel’s title A Gold Mountain Woman refers to the term ‘Gold Mountain man’ which signifies a person who has returned to China with riches from the goldfields of Australia and California. This is a story of exiles. Against the backdrop of real events—violent clashes, ‘roll-ups’, and the hardships faced by early settlers and miners of the time—the novel’s creative re-imagining of historical events will foster reflection upon contemporary anxieties about racism, nationalism and migration.

Judges' comments

Mirandi Riwoe’s project, a historical novel concerning a particularly Chinese experience of the Queensland gold rush, stood out among entries due to the author’s exceptional prose style and storytelling ability. In her short career to date, Riwoe has proven herself a consummate narrative artist, one capable of telling Queensland stories from a unique perspective.

Previous recipients of Queensland Writers Fellowships

View past recipients of Queensland Writers Fellowships