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Play Readings to celebrate Centre’s 20th Anniversary

Six playwrights from Peter Cowan Writers Centre Inc will present script readings of their ten-minute plays on Sunday, 9 August 2015 at the Joondalup Library commencing at 2 pm. ‘The project forms part of the Centre’s 20th anniversary celebrations, and features plays inspired by the short stories of PCWC’s namesake Peter Cowan,’ said PCWC President, Susan Stevens.

StagesWA has provided support to the project with Dramaturg Polly Low mentoring the playwrights in the development of their plays: ‘Mobiles’ (Sue Braghieri); ‘Love and Affection’ (Elizabeth Brennan); ‘Film’ (John Dooley); ‘The Touch of Love’ (Susanne Harford); ‘Red-backed Spiders’ (Gayle Malloy); and ‘The Corner’ (John Trewin).

The plays explore the full gamut of human emotions, conflicts and experiences from the tension between two hitchhikers and the driver who picks them up (‘Mobiles’), to a coming of age story (‘The Touch of Love’) and dissatisfied spouses yearning for another life (‘Film’, ‘Love and Affection’). Other characters are confronted by the aftermath of parental neglect (‘Red-backed Spiders’) and a road accident (‘The Corner’) and must question the consequences of their actions, or failure to act.

‘StagesWA advocates for the development of the craft of playwriting. We are pleased to have been able to give the PCWC playwrights the opportunity of dramaturgy and a facilitated play reading as these are crucial steps in the craft and the work progressing to production,’ said StagesWA Director, Marie Rodger.

Perth professional and community theatre actors Kirstie Francis, Nicolas Kadmos, Shelley McGinn, Angelino Schintu, and Lisa Skrypichayko will assume the adult and narration roles for the play readings, with second and third year acting students from Principal Academy of Dance and Theatre Arts taking on the young adult roles.

Adults and youth over the age of 16 are welcome to attend the play readings and can participate in the Q and A session to provide feedback to the playwrights on how they can further refine their plays. RSVPs are essential. Contact PCWC on (08) 9301 2282 or e: cowan05@bigpond.com by 7 August 2015 to register your attendance.

Read more about Play Readings.


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Memoirs/Biography: Editing and Rewriting

I dislike editing.  You write and write and write in order to reach that deadline and to express what you want to express and then when you do finish it you haven’t actually finished it! You have to re-read it and re-read it again and so by then your sick of your own words and want to throw it out the window. Maybe I’m over personalizing at the end there, but in any case I find editing my work takes more effort than actually writing the essay or article but it is one of the most important things to do.

If my experience is anything like yours and you wish to refine the art of editing in order to perfect your writing then I can recommend Dr Maureen-Helen’s workshop “Memoirs/Biography: Editing and Rewriting”. This workshop is for novice writers and for those who want to perfect their writing through editing, feedback and managing drafts. She will teach you a number of methods and approaches to help you get your writing and editing life on track.

Dr. Maureen-HelenFor those who are unfamiliar with Dr Maureen-Helen she is an experienced writer, teacher and published author. Her memoir, Other People’s Country (ABC Books, 2008) was listed for a Walkey Award and short-listen for WA Premier’s Book Awards (SLWA WA History Prize). Her formal qualifications include a PhD in Writing.

The workshop goes from 1:30pm – 4:30pm on Sunday 12th July.

Please refer to the flyer for information on the workshop, how to apply and the cost for members and non members.

Photos from the PCWC 20th Anniversary High Tea

We all had a great time at the high tea celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the Peter Cowan Writers Centre.

Highlights included a few words from the newly appointed ECU Vice-Chancellor Professor Steve Chapman, the Head of the School of Communications and Arts at ECU Mt Lawley Professor Clive Barstow as well as Professor Glen Phillips. We also enjoyed listening to Liana Joy Christensen recite a poem she wrote during her time in the Advanced Poetry workshop here at PCWC and which is also published in the Homecoming coffee table book.


Thank-you to everyone who made this day possible.


  1. A few words from Professor Clive Barstow
  2. Group under Marquee including Mayor of Wanneroo Tracey Roberts and Professor Glen Philips
  3. Snapshot of PCWC Volunteer Nicole Waddilove, Liana Joy Christensen and Lynne Cohen
  4. PCWC President Susan Stevens talks to Cr Tom from CoJ
  5. PCWC Member Sue Henderson and PCWC Volunteer Robyn Negus
  6. PCWC President Susan Stevens and Professor Clive Barstow

Do you want to kick-start your writing life?

It is the writer who might catch the imagination of young people, and plant a seed that will flower and come to fruition.
– Isaac Asimov

Dr. Maureen-HelenDr Maureen-Helen is back at PCWC with a workshop to help kick-start your writing life. If there is a single part of you that wishes to write, whether that be professionally or simply as a hobby then this workshop might be right up your alley. You will learn about a number of proven techniques and approaches to help you tame that writing beast to your complete satisfaction.

The workshop will take place on 28th June 2015 at 1:30pm-4:30pm but registrations close on the 23rd of June at 5pm.

As the Greek Philosopher Epictetus once said “If you wish to be a writer; write!” and it’s this workshop that will help you achieve this simple advice.

Please find further information and the application form here


PCWC Homecoming

Since my association with PCWC in 2007, I have joined its evolution as a thriving centre for people who live in the northern suburbs. The Centre is run by volunteers who work tirelessly to achieve the objectives of the Centre: to encourage new writers; sustain exiting writers, and to promote Peter Cowan as its namesake…

As we celebrate 20 years of northern writers, it has been a great opportunity to take stock of all that has been achieved and to look forward to a bright future. My thanks to all who have gone before and to all of those who continue to work in providing ongoing services to our members and the community.

— Susan Stevens, Afterword excerpts, Homecoming


The book contains selected stories of Peter Cowan, especially his progression as a writer throughout his life. His personal interviews, and testimonials from his friends and colleagues are also included in the book.

Homecoming is a revelation of the history and establishment of the Peter Cowan Writers Centre. It also highlights the Edith Cowan House and the fascinations from esteemed literary personalities of Australia.

Dust Covered Limited Edition is $35 (plus postage of $7) 

Standard Book is $25 (plus postage of $7) 

Reserve your copy now, click here. Or, call (08) 9301 2282 or Email cowan05@bigpond.com