News, Writing

I’m in the Digital Writers Festival this year! Which means you need to watch me talk to amazing writers online

Back in June or July, I sent Jane Howard, who was organising the Digital Writers Festival, a message on Twitter:

In September/October I received a series of emails the upshot of which meant I was in TWO (count them, TWO) sessions for the Digital Writers Festival.


The Digital Writers Festival runs from November 1 to November 11 which basically means it starts next Tuesday. And it is all ONLINE.

YES. Thanks to the magic of Google Hangouts and some other spiffy internet technology, you, lucky viewers wherever you may be in the world, get to watch awesome writers chat about all things writing, without needing to travel to a festival location, brave crowds, buy tickets and find accommodation etc. It also means you get to see more and different writers who would otherwise not be able to attend and speak.

And panels and discussions are not all that there is on offer. There will be virtual tours, you will get to interact and ask questions and it will generally just be a ton of awesomeness.

And my sessions are FREE! So you really have no excuse. I mean you get to watch me online, watch me stumble over my words and generally have a laugh at my expense.

The first session is The Internet We Miss with Honor Eastly, Elizabeth Flux, Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen on  next Wednesday, November 2nd at the following times:

Perth – 4:30 PM | Sydney – 7:30 PM | Sri Lanka – 2:00 PM | London – 8:30 AM | New York – 4:30 AM | Los Angeles – 1:30 AM

The internet moves so fast: it can be hard to remember a time when YouTube Videos were limited to ten minutes and you had to wait for them to buffer at 240p. As we (perhaps) approach a country with a National Broadband Network, and as the internet takes over more and more of our lives, DWF artists look back over the parts of the internet which informed our early days here, and mourn what is lost.

The next session is with the awesome Angela Serrano (who is amazingly funny and is working on a memoir) and is part of an event series titled Moving Away and we are in Part 2: Coming to Australia where we talk about our experiences as first generation migrant writers in Australia.

It will run on Sunday, November 6 at the following times:

Perth – 9:30 AM | Sydney – 12:30 PM | Sri Lanka – 7:00 AM | London – 1:30 AM | New York – 9:30 PM (Saturday, 5 Nov) | Los Angeles – 6:30 PM (Saturday, 5 Nov)

In 2016, the world is transient: people jumping cities, countries, and continents for careers, family, love, or adventure. In this two part series, writers take a look at moving. Why do you leave, and what makes you stay? What does it mean to be a first generation immigrant? How do you navigate around a new life, and perhaps a new you? And how does the internet allow you to keep writing home?

There will be other amazing writers and editors including Marlee Jane Ward, Anna Spargo-Ryan, Alice Grundy, Yassmin Abdel-Magied, Steven Finch, Alice Pung, Omar Sakr, Elizabeth Tan and Khalid Warsame and more.

To keep up to date on when sessions are or when they are starting and where to go, follow the hashtag #dwf16 on Twitter, or @digitalwriters or @mwikramanayake.

Investigative journalism, Journalism, Political journalism

Khodayar Amini, Australia and asylum seekers, one year on How federal and state governments consistently failed a refugee seeking assistance

Khodayar would often listen to Ahmad Zahir’s songs as he lay on his bed in Sydney. In ‘Man Nagoyam’ Ahmad Zahir sings about being like a caged bird that wants to be free. In Afghanistan, from 1996 to 2001, all musical instruments and music making bar the frame duff drum and religious singing had been banned by the Taliban.

Khodayar ran from the Taliban after most of his family were killed. He ran from death as most humans would, to a place of perceived safety as most humans would. But he ran to Australia where he would end up feeling more caged and more in danger.

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Political journalism

Fremantle fireworks frustrate freo businesses

A Fremantle businessman has found himself at the centre of a row over the Fremantle Australia Day fireworks after he claimed credit for reinstating the fireworks display to January 26 despite the City Council’s original decision to cancel it and move celebrations to another date out of respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.

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Journalism & Editing Portfolio

Editing  for: Hardie Grant Publishing by: Domonique Bertoluccipublished: Oct 4, 2016genre: self-help; non-fiction  for: Seizure in conjunction with Xoumby: Jane Rawsonpublished: Aug 3, 2014genre: speculative fiction; novella Formaldehyde was one of the three winners of the 2014 Viva La Novella prize run by seizure for which I was both editor and judge.  Broadcast work Television news – packages story: China’s Circuit Breaker Mechanismfor: Newsfirst, Capital Maharaja Organisation Private Limit

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The Writing Calendar in Calendar form

The fancy timeline list view of this calendar is here. Let me know which version you like better.

Competitions, Events, Work Opportunity, Writing

July 2016 Writing Calendar WA based events, workshops, comps, courses and more

I decided to put this calendar for the month of June together on a whim. And then people loved it. So this is the monster list of everything even remotely writerly and literary that is going on in Perth and WA in the month of July 2016 from today onwards.

So a few quick answers to questions:

Will this list always be on this site?

MEAA WA is keen to cross-post/host/something along those lines. This will also be cross-posted at Emily Paull‘s site. And possibly on DWOA once we tweak a few things.

Can you compile a list for Victoria and Melbourne?

Not at this point – no time to spare. Please take it on as a project and let us know so we can pass/share/link to it. If you find this useful & are immensely grateful and want to compensate me for my time spent on this, go check out my Patreon. 

Why collaborate with MEAA? Or with DWOA? Or anyone else?

I am more concerned about the end result: getting info to people who need it. Because I get it – writing centres and other organisations are often run with the help of volunteers or with limited resources. Either you can’t do everything you want to or you lack the technical knowhow. Hence why I would rather collaborate with organisations than be all “My precious!” about it and why I am happy for people to pass the list around or add stuff from it to their own lists.

To me, it just made sense to have a one stop shop for as much of it as possible.

Is this list duplicating other lists? 

In parts yes, but as a whole, no. Events have come from ASA, AWM, APWN, AWG, IPEd, Society of Editors WA, FAWWA, PCWC, KSP, Writing WA, a few libraries and all the WA universities and bookshops and groups to compile the list. Think of this one as an almost exhaustive list collating almost everything in one place.

Can we send you information?

Yes. Please tweet your info at me at @mwikramanayake. Please send me signings/talks/lectures/comps/courses. If sending writing group details, check the end of the list first. Authors/organisations/libraries/bookstores/universities/bookclubs can all send info in.

What are these odd events you have added in? 

Very likely things I think journalists would be interested in or things writers specialising in certain forms/genres/subjects would be keen on.

I don’t like scrolling…

Here is a calendar view w/ categories. Please stay tuned for possible GCal/iCal functionality.

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