Dear Emerging Writer,
I have seen the future and it looks beautiful.
In the future we, the Emerging Writers will invade and overrun one of the oldest buildings in Melbourne; we will lay on the floor, among the stiff dark faces of history with our devices plugged in, drawing power from old establishments to fuel new creative endevours online – The Yarra Room
In the future we will no longer desire to be ‘out‘ or ‘finished‘; to be ‘Emerged’. In the future we will have come to accept and understand that every writer is emerging, no matter where they are in their career. ‘To emerge’ is to embrace the forward momentum. We will associate Emerging as a means of describing our growth and even the most publicly recognizable writers of our time will consider themselves still emerging – The 5×5 Rules
In the future, we will have stepped past our dark attitudes towards the publishing gatekeepers. We are no longer worried about whether our names are on the list. We are not concerned about issues of access to the main party, for we are throwing our own bash at the end of the lane-way and every one is welcome – Ice Breaker Drinks.
We understand that we need to act in a creative and decisive manner if we are to ensure the next generation of writers do not laugh at our inability change – DIY HARDS; Self Publishing. ‘This is the best time ever to be a writer – with so much information accessible on the internet. Self publishing is no longer a dirty word.’ – Darrell Pitt.
We no longer need to worry if our glass is half empty or half full, because the drinks are cheap and there is another Emerging Writer at the bar buying us all another round – Interstate Mates.
In the future we are brave enough to lay down the challenge to the government to defund us, for we know that we will survive. In the future we understand our place within the least dependent and most unstoppable art form – Emerging Q and A.
We willingly divulge our fears and vulnerabilities in an effort to dispel myths of publishing, fame, success and the struggle to get there – The Control Room.
In the future we are our own best boss. We understand that we are going to work with ourselves for a very long time and we have started to treat ourselves as we would our favourite employee. When nothing is working we are willing to acknowledge that sometimes, it’s just a bad day at work and we take ourselves out for lunch.
In the future we file our tax returns as writers, under the appropriate tax exemptions available to those in the arts. We stock our offices with the things we need and remember to ask for a tax invoice – Benjamin Law. We understand that it is our responsibility to be aware of what we are eligible for. We research scholarships, grants, funding and prizes. We fill out grant applications to the criteria – Felix Nobis.
In the future, distance is no boundary and communities of writers are formed and maintained through the technologies available to us – Real Live Writers Group – Live Skype. Traveling the world no longer effects the work dynamics of a writers group. The future of Emerging Writers involves sharing contacts, names, experience and support; it includes editing each others work and making sure our writing colleges are always putting their best face forward.
We have realised the limitations upon the internet and the governing seach bodies we use to navigate it. We have learnt to use these limitations to our advantage and we we no longer post images to our websites without alternative keyword texts – General SEO. We have stopped being cryptic or poetic with our article headings and our blogs have started to rank within the subjects that we specialise.
We use Twitter for good. We use twitter to cultivate a community of respect; to share information that may have been lost to others, to equalise access to information and maintain new friendships. In the future we are a community of writers who close ranks on trolling, bullying, unkindness and judgment.
In the future we practice empathy and echo that message across social media – #ewf14.
In the future, we as writers set the standard among our friends and families to be the first to purchase our friends books. Friends buy each others work from the place where they hope to one day see themselves – Krissy Kneen. We turn up and fill the room when a fellow Emerging Writer is launching a new work – Hologram & Seizure launch. We connect with other Emerging Writers on a local level – 5 x 5.
We have returned to the idea of a book as a piece of art – weather it is printed or digital – and we take the time to ensure our work has the best cover design and artwork. We consider not just the image but the single frame narrative that our cover represents – KYD. We appreciate the book as an object and consider its weight, form, size and paper stock when producing it – Look of the Book.
We as writers no long attempt to do everything ourselves – Emerging Editors. We understanding that our expertise lies with writing and we implore to help of others when we need it, especially when it comes to editing our work. We respect the role of editors in the development of our work and no longer ask them to give us their best work for free – Book Editing and Building a Career.
We have learnt that we need to keep showing up, no matter what happened yesterday.
In the future that I saw, Emerging Writers sat on the stage and the panelists and ambassadors where the ones tweeting our funny quotes – You are Here. It was the interns that were asking the questions and the Un-Emerging Writers who were answering them.
Where did I see this future?
At the Emerging Writers Festival, Melbourne 2014. It is our turn now. It is your turn to take over, stand up and be counted. The question that remained for all of us to answer was this….
‘What are you going to do now?’ – Sam Twyford Moore, Festival Director.
I had the very good fortune of being a part of the Emerging Writers Festival for 2014, including the National Writers Conference in Melbourne. It was a great honour to be a part of it and I would like to thank everyone involved in putting on such a great festival.