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The Skills of a Bower Bird: Research for Writing (SB1612) with Maureen Helen – Sunday, 24 July 2016 1.30pm – 4.30pm

Maureen Helen will be facilitating a workshop titled The Skills of a Bower Bird: Research for Writing on Sunday, 24 July 2016. 

Maureen HelenThis is a basic research workshop for writers in all genres. The workshop will provide an introduction to the tools, methods and skills required for making writing authentic and honest. Attendees will also learn the skills necessary for blending research seamlessly into their stories.

Maureen Helen is an experienced writer and facilitator of writing groups. She is the author of Other People’s Country and Elopement: a Memoir. In addition, she has a Bachelors Degree in History and a PhD in Writing.

If this workshop interests you, you can register for this workshop using our Online Registration Form.

Radical Devotion: Landscape Poetry for the 21st Century with Liana Joy Christensen (RD1611)- Saturday 16th July 1:30pm- 4:30pm

Liana Joy Christensen will be facilitating a workshop based on landscaping your poetry you have created into the 21st Century. 0fa875_54a9f8afa17d466084d4abaf9e5e4c3f[1]

Like people, the world needs to be seen, loved and touched in order to thrive through the passages of life. Often indigenous people have a more clear awareness of their responsibilities-but the task can’t be handled by just one group of people and needs to be taken by all hands. This workshop will explore on playing and having fun with forming poetry for the 21st Century. We will then encourage participants to begin drafting their own landscape poem for the 21st Century.

Liana Joy Christensen is an award winning author with a variety of short stories, essays and poems have been published nationally and internationally literary journals. She is the author of Deadly Beautiful- Vanishing Killers of the Animal Kingdom.

If this workshop interests you, you can register for this workshop using our online registration form.

Writing Dramatic Dialogue with John Harman (WD1610) – Saturday June 25th 2016, 1:30pm-4:30pm

Next weekend, John Harman will be facilitating a workshop based around writing dramatic dialogue.

The dialogue in any piece of writing, is extremely important and must always serve a purpose. It needs to achieve things such as relaying information, advancing the plot, show characterisation and show the relationship between characters as well as many more aspects. Much of a narrative is propelled by dialogue and good dialogue shows and expresses rather than tells.John Harman It makes the story fly. If you struggle with doing this in your pieces of writing then John Harman will be able to help.

John Harman has worked in advertising and journalism in the UK and America. He was also a co-owner of a small film production company, where he wrote documentaries and film-scripts. He is now a full-time writer of crime thrillers including Called to Account, Dangerous Assets, Money for Nothing and The Bottom Line which have been published in the UK.

If this workshop is something you think you’re interested in, you can register using our online registration form.

Memoir Writing Made Simple with Maureen Helen (MMS169) Sunday June 12th 1.30 pm to 4.30 pm

This weekend is Maureen-Helen’s Memoir Writing Made Simple workshop. On Sunday, 12th June Maureen-Helen will be hosting a workshops on the best and simple ways of writing your memoir.
The workshops will help you to combine ways to shape an incident from real life, into the form of a short memoir for publication, or for your own enjoyment, making this workshop suitable for any writing level and any writing goal.
For those who are unfamiliar with the work of Maureen-Helen she is an experienced writer and has facilitated many writing groups. She is the author of Other People’s Country and Elopement: a Memoir. She also has a PhD in Writing.
If you’re still not sure whether this workshop is for you, take a look at the testimonials written by participants of Maureen-Helen’s last workshop “Kickstart Your Writing”:
“The “How to get started” practical tips were inspiring and refreshingly honest”
“3 hours was not long enough….!”
“It was great. Best I’ve been to”
“Very glad I chose to attend, got so much out of it (motivation) and will be back again!”
“A very supportive and informative environment, delivered casually and in an approachable way, ideal for those starting out.”
If you like the sound of these comments and want to register you can find the application page in the link provided, you can also find more information on times, what to bring and how to get to PCWC.
There are discounted prices for members as well, so if you think you might be interested in all that PCWC has to offer then take the time to apply for membership.

Are you in the process or about to start a piece of work?

Are you in the process or about to start a piece of work?   Perhaps a one act play, a screenplay, a novella, memoir, book or book of poetry?   First Draft Writers Group is a safe environment to share your work with other writers and receive feedback if you so desire.   A place to discuss problems you may be experiencing with your writing and a place to find out how others cope with the very same problems. Please bring a synopsis of your work to the first session you attend so that we will all get a sense of where you are heading in your writing.  If you would like group members to give feedback on your work, please bring copies of your work to the session.

Cost $5 for Members and $10 for Non Members.
The group welcome new participants.   Enjoy a complimentary tea, coffee, biscuits and cake in a relaxed atmosphere.

Convenor: Gayle Malloy      Time: 1-4pm       Venue: ECU Joondalup Campus, Edith Cowan House, Building 20, 270 Joondalup Drive, Joondalup
For further information contact PCWC on (08) 9301 2282 or email cowan05@bigpond.com with the subject “First Draft Writers Group”



Congratulations to PCWC Playwright, Gayle Malloy, and congratulations also to PCWC facilitator, playwright and poet, Vivienne Glance.

• Congratulations to PCWC Playwright, Gayle Malloy, on her 10 minute play Red-backed Spiders being selected for a Wildcard performance at the Short and Sweet play festival in Dubai. Gayle’s play will be performed on Saturday, 6 February 2016. Red-backed Spiders was initially developed by Gayle as an interpretation from a Peter Cowan short story, and as part of the 2015 PCWC-StagesWA Playwright Project. Well done, Gayle!

• Congratulations also to PCWC facilitator, playwright and poet, Vivienne Glance. Vivienne’s play Underground will be performed during the Perth Fringe Festival at the Blue Room Theatre from 16-20 February, 2016. Tickets are available from Fringe World Congratulations, Vivienne!

The West Australian – Summary of Writing Events in 2015 an article by William Yeoman

By William Yeoman, The West Australian – Summary of Writing Events in 2015

2015 saw the best of times and the worst of times for the books industry. An annus mirabilis and annus horribilis combo. Especially here in Australia. While we were blessed with fine new novels from some of our greatest writers, Geraldine Brooks and Gail Jones amongst them, we also witnessed the death of Colleen McCullough at the age of 77, the Book Council of Australia debacle and the announcement of the removal of parallel import restrictions on books.

Locally, this year’s WA Premier’s Book Awards was cancelled — it is now a biennial award — and writing organisations such as writingWA and The Literature Centre lost their DCA funding. But the 2015 Perth Writers Festival was one of the most successful ever, featuring a lineup including Elizabeth Gilbert and DBC Pierre. Peter Cowan Writers Centre celebrated its 20th anniversary; Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre its 30th. Northbridge’s Centre for Stories opened its doors, while UWA Publishing turned 80 (incidentally, Fremantle Press turns 40 next year).

And the local bricks-and-mortar bookstore scene continued to thrive, despite Dymocks Hay Street store closing down briefly after its long-term franchisee decided to call it quits. Boffins Bookshop moved to William Street and expanded into fiction and children’s books. New Edition in Fremantle and Northbridge’s Northside Books also moved and prospered. New bookstore Diabolik Books & Records is now a funky and much-needed complement to Mt Hawthorn’s spirituality-oriented Bodhi Tree bookshop and cafe.

But arguably the two biggest events in international publishing this year were David Lagercrantz’s follow-up to Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy, The Girl in the Spider’s Web; and Harper Lee’s “sequel” to To Kill a Mockingbird, Go Set a Watchman.

While not set to match the astronomical sales of the original Millenium Trilogy (80 million copies worldwide), Lagercrantz’s reboot novel proved popular with fans and was on the whole critically well-received — not least because it marked the return of one of recent literature’s most intriguing heroines, Lisbeth Salander.

“Every century a couple of characters are created that really live — and Lisbeth Salander is one of them, ” Lagerkrantz told The West in an interview. “She was such a brilliant invention of Stieg Larsson — and not only Lisbeth but Mikael Blomkvist, the passionate reporter who I could easily identify with and who, in one way, is Lisbeth’s Dr Watson.”

Speaking of reboots, 2015 also found Anthony Horowitz penning the latest Bond novel, Trigger Mortis, and, kicking off a new series of “reinvented” Shakespeare plays for next year’s Shakespeare 400 celebrations, Jeanett Winterson tackling The Winter’s Tale.

But nothing could compete with the controversy and media frenzy surrounding Harper Lee’s “lost sequel” to her 1961 Pulitzer Prize-winning, Bible-outselling classic To Kill a Mockingbird, the most anticipated follow-up of any in recent publishing history.

Now 89, the famously reclusive Lee actually completed Go Set A Watchman in 1957 — before writing her until-now only published novel To Kill a Mockingbird. But her agent, Maurice Crain, convinced Lee to revise it, shifting the focus from Scout, Jem and Atticus to the latter alone. Lee duly produced a new version, Atticus. Crain and his wife Annie Laurie Williams then suggested another rewrite, this time from the six-year-old Scout’s point of view. The rest is history. Almost.

In February news broke, a mere two months after Alice, a lawyer and Lee’s sister and primary caregiver, died, that Go Set a Watchman would be published. Lee’s fragile health and her being adamant for decades that she would never publish another novel immediately raised suspicions of coercion on the part of various parties with an obvious interest in seeing another Lee novel through the press. These suspicions have since proved unfounded, and Lee has issued a statement through her lawyer saying “I’m alive and kicking and happy as hell with the reactions to Watchman”.

Of course, it’s not as though the rest of the books published in this 125th anniversary year of Agatha Christie’s birth, this year in which much-loved British fantasy author Terry Pratchett died at age of 66, were merely insects buzzing around the two legs of some literary Collosus.

Locally, there were novels such as Stephen Daisley’s haunting Coming Rain, non-fiction titles such as Liz Byrski’s landmark In Love and War: Nursing Heroes, short story collections such as Susan Midalia’s lapidary Feet to the Stars and poetry collections such as Lucy Dougan’s extraordinary Guardians.

Nationally there were the aforementioned novels by Brooks and Jones, as well as “eco-novels” like James Bradley’s Clade and Mireille Juchau’s The World Without Us and Text’s welcome reissuing of a number of Randolph Stow titles. Sophie Laguna won the Miles Franklin for her 2014 novel, The Eye of the Sheep, while Fremantle author Joan London won the Australian Prime Minister’s Literary Awards fiction category for her 2014 novel, The Golden Age. On a personal level, it was with some pleasure that I welcomed back Barry Maitland’s fictional detective Harry Belltree for the second in the Belltree Trilogy, Ash Island; I also enjoyed Magda Szubanski’s brilliant memoir, Reckoning and am currently enjoying Martin Harrison’s beautiful posthumous collection of poetry, Happiness (UWA Publishing)

Internationally, this year’s Man Book prize winner A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James caused a sensation, as did the shortlisted A Little Life by Hanya Yanahigara – and this in a year which saw new novels from Ishiguro Kazuo (The Buried Giant), Isabel Allende (The Japanese Lover), Milan Kundera (The Festival of Insignificance), Jonathan Franzen (Purity) and Louis de Bernieres (The Dust that Falls from Dreams).

In 2015 other books in translation continued to prove popular, such as those by Elena Ferrante, Karl Ove Knausgard and Hungarian writer Laszlo Krasznahorkai, whose Man Booker International Prize-winning Seiobo There Below is easily my book of the year. However it was left to rock stars to provide us with experiences both sublime and the ridiculous: witness Patti Smith’s surpassingly brilliant memoir M Train and Morrissey’s debut novel The List of the Lost, a lurid passage of which earned him this year’s Bad Sex award.
The West Australian

Anniversary Dinner at the Pavilion Joondalup featuring Guest Writers.

What a fantastic night it was (25th November) as we celebrated the final event for our 20th anniversary year with dinner for 55 ‘very well ‘turned-out’ members and friends who certainly dressed to impress at the Pavilion restaurant. There was no mistaking the ‘men in black’ who represented the Centre (thank you Keith and Pedro)!   There was a terrific atmosphere  with everyone relaxed and enjoying the good food, good company and a lovely walk down ‘memory lane, with slides (produced by Sophie and Nicole) of people and events past and present. The commentary for the evening was led by our Past President John McMullan as MC which was both humourous and informative; our Patron, Emeritus Professor Andrew Taylor and his wife flew in for the event and he was in fine form, having written a poem on the spot (to be shared shortly); Professor Glen Phillips recited the POME he had edited as part of the online continuous poem event, from earlier in the year. Susan Stevens (President) acknowledged a number of members who could not be present and read their kind greetings (Trudy Graham and Ena Taylor) along with the words chosen by Trudy Graham upon the opening of the Centre in 1998 (highlighted in the Newsletter produced for the evening). We were delighted to hear Sue Braghieri’s review of the WA Stages/PCWC joint venture that saw the conversion of 6 of Peter Cowan’s short stories to plays by some very accomplished member playwrights under the direction of Dramaturg Polly Low. Val Shaw (Gallery Co-ordinator and Artist) talked about the joint venture between Joondalup Art Gallery and PCWC in the production of art pieces inspired by members’ poetry and prose (currently on exhibit at the Joondalup Art Gallery. (see Events). Writer in residence Susan Midalia, did not disappoint with her thoughtful reflections on her time at the Centre, one on one consults, and the Writers’ Retreat weekend. She was extremely complimentary about the generosity of the volunteers who supported her during her stay.

Congratulations to our two new Honorary Life Members in Pedro Suarez and Gayle Malloy who have volunteered at the Centre for many years and worked tirelessly behind the scenes. Warm congratulations to our Members who have been with us for twenty years (John Dooley, Glen Phillips and Rashida Murphy) and to all of those members who received Membership awards for five, ten and fifteen years.

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