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Ged Gillmore

We recently attended the launch of Studio alumni Ged Gillmore’s latest book in his Bill Murdoch mystery series ‘Headland’. The launch of ‘Headland’ and a reading by Ged, was held at Berkelouw Books in Paddington in Sydney, and was a great success.

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Monica Watt

Monica emailed us to let us know that she has been awarded the Runner Up prize in the South Coast Writers’ International Women’s Day Competition with a short story that she adapted from her final story she wrote in her 4-Week Unlocking Creativity course.

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Maryhelen Cox

Maryhelen’s story ‘An American Migrant’ was selected as one of 100 stories published in Seniors’ Stories Volume 3, launched at Parliament House.

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Geraldine Borella

Geraldine Borella, who is currently tutoring Unlocking Creativity Online and undertaking her final draft course at the Studio, has just been awarded a mentorship from the Australian Society of Authors, as part of their Emerging Authors Mentorship program for 2018. The 2018 program is funded by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund. This is a well deserved honour and we are so excited for Geraldine.

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Rachel Smith

Rachel has won the ‘Financial Crime’ Prize in the 2017 Scarlet Stiletto Awards. Her short story has now been published by Clandestine Press as part of an e-book along with all of the other winners. Congratulations Rachel!

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Zahid Gamieldien

Zahid, another of our Novel & Script tutors, co-wrote a television series pilot that was judged in the top 30 of the prestigious AMC One-Hour Pilot Awards at the recent 2017 Austin Film Festival in Texas, which Zahid attended along with the finals of WeScreenplay’s TV Pilot Screenwriting Award. He also co-wrote a short film screenplay that’s currently an official selection at the Austin Comedy Short Film Festival.

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Gilbert Mane

Studio alumni Gilbert Mane’s first novel, ‘The Revelation of the Elders’ has just been published with both Kindle and paperback versions available. “It takes a good man to fight real evil (and a little chicken soup doesn’t hurt either).” The Revelation of the Elders is Book One in the Elders Series.

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Ruth Fingret

Ruth Fingret, one of our First Draft tutors, has written her first full length play Asylum which is being produced by Brave New World Theatre, and will run from 15 November to 25 November at the Comber St Studio, in Paddington, Sydney. Directed by Richard Hilliard, Asylum is a story about the many ways in which we seek refuge in our lives, and follows Craig, an Australian Immigration officer, who has retreated into a rigid sense of morality and duty. Equally uncompromising in his personal and professional life he now finds himself forced into questioning that position.

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Kelly Rigby

Kelly Rigby, our Advanced Novel & Script tutor and Editor has just won an #8Word Story Competition, judged by author Nick Earls, from thousands of entries. Her winning entry is being featured on the Goa digital billboard network in Brisbane. Let us know if you have seen Kelly’s winning entry!

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Ged Gillmore

Studio alumni Ged Gillmore’s first crime fiction novel Headland has just been published. “Bill Murdoch’s doing just fine, thanks for not asking. He’s dealing drugs for a professional crime syndicate in Sydney and saving for a house by the sea. But what does he think life is – a fairy tale?”

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Kelly Nicholls

Studio alumni, Kelly Nicholls’ novel ‘A Reluctant Warrior’ is now available for sale. Eight years from concept to completion, Kelly’s gripping novel tells the story of one young woman’s terrifying encounter with Colombia’s most notorious drug cartel and gives readers a rare glimpse into Colombia’s drug wars and their impact on ordinary citizens.

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Kerry Littrich

Kerry has been announced as a winner of the 2017 Affirm Press Mentorship Award. Kerry’s novel ‘The Grand Pacific’ is set in the bohemian 70’s and follows fifteen-year-old Estella Jones, who lives with her alcoholic mother in The Grand Pacific, a run-down hotel by the beach in Coogee’. After giving birth to a still-born baby, the result of rape, Estella buries the body in the sand dunes and flees, hoping to keep her shame secret. Returning years later as a wealthy and enigmatic woman, Estella buys the crumbling hotel in an effort to make amends for the past and create a connection to her lost child.

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Ruth Fingret

A new independent theatre company will stage the hit comedy ‘Motherhood the Musical’ by award winning composer Sue Fabisch and directed by Writers’ Studio tutor, Ruth Fingret, at the Bondi Pavilion Theatre from August 17 until 26. Motherhood the Musical is about four women who share their insights, challenges and pleasures at a baby shower. Stage Whispers Magazine applauded its “insightful tongue in cheek lyrics and foot tapping rhythms”, and in the US, Variety described it as “an entertaining night of chuckles and tears.”

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Robyn Duncan

Robyn’s book ‘Letters to Bunty’ is a dedication to her mother, Bunty McDonald, who never had the chance to see her daughters grow into young women and mothers. With an equal measure of tears and laughter, theses letters pen stories of a happy childhood, adolescence and adulthood filled with mischief, times of darkness, grief and challenge, and memories filled with joy.

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Georgina Symes

Georgina who is currently undertaking the Novel & Script First Draft Live course, is starring in a Suzie Miller play Sunset Strip at the Griffin Theatre in Sydney. “At Sunset Strip the only people left are those who couldn’t leave. Arriving home after a bout of chemotherapy to this once thriving summer hot-spot, Caroline finds the lake completely dried up, the holiday-makers long gone.”

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Richard Cornally

Senior Writers’ Studio tutor, Richard Cornally is directing a play by Theresa Rebeck, Mauritius, at the New Theatre in Newtown. “Unsurprisingly for a writer with extensive experience in TV police procedurals like NYPD Blue and Law & Order: Criminal Intent, one of Rebeck’s strengths is her skill at stitching tension into every exchange.” Mauritius will run from 12 – 29 July.

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Robert Sullivan

Studio alumni Robert Sullivan’s new book The Ghost of Smuggler’s Run is now available for download. “Pat O’Leary, Max Priestley, Georgina Greene and Charlene Anderson are the Team of Four. They live in Murwillumbah on the north coast of New South Wales, and attend Year 8 at Murwillumbah High School. They’ve had many adventures.”

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Zahid Gamieldien

Writers’ Studio tutor, Zahid Gamieldien’s latest short story, A Barn with a Belfry has been published in Kill Your Darlings literary journal. Zahid’s short story is behind a paywall, however there is a one-month ‘trial’ subscription available for only $3.95.

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Lia Weston

Studio alumni Lia’s second novel ‘Those Pleasant Girls’ is due for release through Pan Macmillan on April 27. Evie Pleasant, nee Bouvier, is back in town. In a figure-hugging skirt, high heels and a pin-up hairdo, she’s unrecognisable from the wild child who waged war on Sweet Meadow in her youth.

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Shereen Khor

Shereen’s first book ‘From Distant Shores’ is a story about Shereen’s life across continents over six decades. Set against the cultural, historical and political backdrops of Malaysia, England and Australia, it weaves the tales of a harsh Chinese upbringing, childhood innocence, a quest for knowledge, domestic violence, mental illness and spirituality.

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Doug Pender

Doug’s latest story ‘Beauty in the Deep’ was awarded runner up and Highly Commended in the Polestar Literary Awards 2016, and will be included their latest journal. Congratulations Doug!

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Valerie Orton

Valerie emailed to let us know that her recent book launch was a great success. ‘Everyday Resilience’ is a personal leadership book with practical tools and tips to build your resilience and resources to sustain your whole well-being. Readers will find author stories, academic research and case studies that will help you create calm from chaos. Valerie is working on her novel.

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L.A. Larkin

Studio Alumni, L.A. Larkins’ acclaimed new thriller thriller ‘Devour’ was published in September by Hachette. “Their greatest fear was contaminating an ancient Antarctic lake, buried beneath the ice for millions of years. They little knew the catastrophe they were about to unleash. Welcome to the high octane world of Olivia Wolfe.”

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Helen Shorrocks

Studio tutor and alumni, Helen Shorrocks emailed us in July that her manuscript took out first place in the YA Aspiring Author’s category at the CYA Conference in Brisbane. And also received favourable responses from publishers at the conference.

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Kelly Fisk

Studio Alumni, Kelly emailed us about a project she has developed with a colleague, a digital magazine for new Australian creative writing ‘Tabula Rasa’. Their goal is provide a platform for new Australian writers to share their work with a wide audience. They are currently running a short story competition with the entry date finishing 4 November.

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Shannon Garner

Shannon Garner’s memoir Labour of Love has just been published by Simon & Schuster. Shannon’s writes “thanks to The Writer’s Studio I truly found my love of writing buried within. After completing the 4-week Unlocking Creativity course and then the 10-month Novel & Script First Draft course, I found the determination to write and submit my memoir… Thank you Writers’ Studio for triggering my drive and inspiration and my deep adoration for writing.”

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Zahid Gamieldien

Writers’ Studio tutor Zahid Gamieldien has been nominated for the Australian Writers’ Guild’s – John Hinde Award 2016. And will be published in the up-coming Meanjin Summer 2016 edition.

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Helen Thurloe

Helen submitted a story she developed in the final week of our Unlocking Creativity course and on the strength of that won, the prestigious Varuna Scholarship in 2014. Helen’s further developed her story and we are very excited to announce that her debut novel ‘Promising Azra’ has just been published and launched by Allen & Unwin in July.

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Belinda Nowell

Belinda Nowell’s illustrated children’s book ‘Who’s Got a Normal Family’ has been published by Little Steps. Who’s Got a Normal Family is now available.

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Anna Spargo-Ryan

Studio alumni, Anna Spargo-Ryan’s debut novel ‘The Paper House’ has been published by Pan McMillian and has received critical acclaim.”Heartbreaking, fearless, and ablaze with a coruscating beauty all its own, The Paper House tells the story of a woman sinking into the depths of grief, and the desperate efforts of her loved ones to bring her up for air.”

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Alice McTyer

Alice’s short story ‘ Water Views’ has won an Honourable Mention (Top 5) in the Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction Awards. The competition is well-known, global, and attracts thousands of entries. It is a huge achievement and we are very proud of Alice. ‘Water Views’ also won a Highly Commended in the Sydney Writers Room 2015 Short Story Competition.

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Zahid Gamieldien

Zahid’s short story ‘Poetics of Murder’, has been shortlisted for the Cupboard Pamphlet’s short story competition.

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Jess Black

Writers’ Studio tutor and alumni Jess Black’s latest children’s book ‘Moon Dance’ was recently launched at the Newcastle Writer’s Festival in April. Click below to purchase a copy of ‘Moon Dance’ by Jess Black and illustrated by Renee Treml. Published by Scholastic, the largest publisher and distributor of children’s books in the world.

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Nic Morris

We received an email from Nic Morris to let us know that he has just published his first novel ‘Into the Silence’. “I did Unlocking Creativity which I loved and which spurred me on to write the story…” ‘Into the Silence’ is available at Dymocks and also via Amazon.

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Ruth Fingret

Ruth, is one of our First Draft Online tutors and her very funny and clever play ‘Chemistry Test’ which she wrote and directed has won through to final Gala Night of the Short & Sweet Festival 2016 (winning Best Play, Best Director, and best Actors from both the Judges and Audience Vote). Her other play, ‘Catastrophising is NOT a Word!’, is playing this week as part of Top 80 Short and Sweet Festival. Click here to buy tickets.

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Doug Pender

Doug Pender has had short stories published recently in Blue Crow magazine and also Brio, an anthology launched at the Toowoomba Writers’ Festival. His novel ‘Blood of My Father’ was also long-listed in a Young Adult fiction competition run by Fish Publishing.

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Zahid Gamieldien

Writers’ Studio alumni and tutor Zahid Gamieldien’s latest short story ‘Attribution’ has been published in the Australian literary journal Overland. Zahid has had previous short stories published in Tincture, Mascara Literary Review, Bahamut, Overland and Pantheon journals.

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Shaun Matthews

Studio alumni Shaun’s book The Art of Balanced Living is being launched on Friday 4th March at the Bronte Surf Club, Bronte Beach at 6.30pm

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David Moon

We just received an email from David who undertook our Novel & Script course some years ago. He has just published his second novel Run Baby Run under the pseudonym Max Bolt, about a quick talking 18-year-old who dreams of winning the Rio Olympics 100 metres.

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Marilyn Chalkley

Unlocking Creativity alumni, Marilyn Chalkely sent us the news that her Short Story, ‘Coffee Cup Crime’, set in Canberra, was awarded a Special Commendation at the recent 22nd Scarlett Stiletto Awards, held in Melbourne in November. It’s Marilyn’s first foray into writing crime fiction.

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Meryl Tankard

Renowned and iconic choreographer and Studio alumni, Meryl Tankard, has had her works staged in Europe, the Americas, Asia and her homeland, Australia. She makes her filmmaking debut with an inspirational portrait of dancer Michelle Ryan whose passion and courage has enabled her to overcome life-shattering personal adversity. “Michelle’s story” is screening as part of the Adelaide Festival on 17th & 25th October. Meryl is also working on her feature film script which she developed in our 10 Month Novel and Script Course.

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Peter Shmigel

Peter Shmigel, a talented writer has done several courses with us has recently published “Departures & Arrivals”, a poetry collection by “a voluntary migrant born to forced migrants. The poems explore different places and different states, and the search for sense through the senses.”

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Denise Imwold

Denise is one our of inspirational Unlocking Creativity and Short Story writing tutors. Her very moving piece piece about the death of her ex-husband was published in the Anthology “Grieve”, Stories and Poems for Grief Awareness Month 2015, published by the Hunter Writers Centre. Her story is titled “Have I Told You Lately …?”

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Sue Thomas

Sue Thomas is appearing at the Sydney Fringe Festival this month in her one-woman comedy show and a source of inspiration. We always tell writers in our 10-Month Novel and Script First Draft Course to write about something that will change their life. The process can have a profound impact on the author. While writing her novel with us, Sue, who was a very quiet librarian at the time, wrote about a woman who started off working at MacDonald’s but whose dream was to become a stand-up comedian.

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Alex Gilly

Alex Gilly’s debut thriller Devil’s Harbour was published in the US this month by Forge Books and has had some great reviews, including the prestigious Kirkus and Publishers’ Weekly. “Gilly’s debut is a real page-turner filled with thrills, chills, and unexpected surprises.” Kirkus “The ending is an unexpected nail-bitter that crackles with tension. Readers will look forward to seeing more of Nick,” Publishers’ Weekly

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Scott Butler

Congratulations to Scott Butler, another Studio graduate whose debut novel ‘Drive’ is now available on Amazon. A psychological thriller, Scott’s novel is receiving some excellent reviews: “Great read – once I stepped a few pages in it consumed my long weekend on Waiheke, knocked it out in 4 rainy days. Nice one!” Good Reads

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Zahid Gamieldien

Writers’ Studio tutor, Zahid Gamieldien has had another two of his short stories published. ‘The Boy Who Believes in Magic’ can be found in Issue 18 of the Mascara Literary Review and ‘A Creature of Intelligence’ in Issue 12 of the Tincture Journal. His story ‘The Poetics of Murder’ was also short-listed for the Cupboard Pamphlets shorty story competition.

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Ged Gillmore

Congratulations to Ged Gillmore. Cats on the Run! is the rip-roaring adventure story of two cats trying to escape their evil owners and is a chapter book for 8-12 year olds. It has already sold over 6 and a half thousand copies! It is being officially launched next Thursday, 23rd July at 6.30pm at Berkelouw Books, 19 Oxford Street, Paddington.

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Louisa Bennet

Louisa Bennet’s new book “Monty and Me”, published by Harper Collins, introduces loveable dog detective Monty. You might think that dogs can’t understand us… but you’d be wrong. When Monty’s beloved master is stabbed to death, Monty decides to use his formidable nose to track the killer down. Luckily he manages to find a home with Rose Sidebottom, the young policewoman who’s investigating the case. But with her colleagues turning against her, and the wrong man collared, she’s going to need a little help…

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Patricia Worth

A new translation of George Sand’s Spiridion by one of our alumni Patricia Worth has just been published by SUNY Press (State University of New York). Patricia contacted us with the good news and sent us this message: “To be a literary translator, one has to be a writer. A lot of what I know about writing fiction came from your courses. Thanks for all your hard work.” Trish Worth

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Margaret Sixel

Congratulations to our alumni Nico Lathouris, our 4th Draft Scriptwriting Consultant and co-writer of Mad Max IV- Fury Road, Margaret Sixel, who did one of the first ever classes with Roland held in his then Bondi apartment and editor of the film, George Miller, the co-writer and director, whose creative vision is behind every frame of the movie, and the whole creative team at Kennedy-Miller-Mitchell for the outstanding world-wide success of Mad Max IV – Fury Road. The film has already grossed over $USD200 million worldwide. Many members of the Kennedy-Miller-Mitchell team have done our courses and its always great having them on board.

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Jess Black

Writers’ Studio alumni and Novel & Script tutor Jess Black, has been an incredibly prolific writer of children’s books. Jess has written for children’s television, the Bindi Wildlife Adventure series and the RSPCA Animal Tales series all released through Random House. Jess co-wrote The Kaboom Kid series of books with Dave Warner the cricketer and published by Simon & Schuster. The ‘Keeper of the Crystal ‘series will be released in June and will be published through Walker Books, the leading children’s publisher in Australia and NZ.

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Danielle Wright

Danielle recently emailed us to introduce her beautifully crafted non-fiction baby, Sleepy Magic. “I am writing to thank you for your online Unlocking Creativity course. Exactly 2 years ago I signed up for this course with the intention of it unlocking a major creative block I had after leaving my advertising business of 12 years. I wanted to create artwork, becoming an author was not on my radar at all. Sleepy Magic, (now published by Penguin) officially launched last Friday online and in less than a week I have had my first radio interview on 4GR Breakfast Radio, The Sunday Mail in Adelaide wants to write a case study with a family and I have been asked to speak at a Woman’s Business Conference in Manly. I can’t thank you enough. I have been waiting 20 years to pay it forward and the time has come.”

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Gilbert Mane

Soon to be retired headmaster from the prestigious John Colet School in Belrose, TED speaker, Writer’ Studio alumni and avid dancer, Gilbert Mane, has embarked on a new storytelling website venture involving sharing traditional Indian stories with young people around the world.

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Nigel Bartlett

Another of our Writer’s Studio alumni has had his debut novel, King of the Road, published by Random House. He recently sent us this email “I have very fond memories of the Writers’ Studio, especially because it got me writing, taught me so much about structure and cleared out a lot of the rubbish I’d previously believed about writing.”

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Frank Davidson

“Just a wee line from Scotland to boast that (for the first time) I have won actual money in a short story competition, in the New England Writers’ Centre Thunderbolt Competition. I won the Emerging Writers’ prize. “Grand-da’s Stolen Boots, (Winner, Emerging Award; Highly Commended, Fiction) is an utterly charming story. It uses a deceptively simple yarn-like technique to tell a fun and unexpected tale of Thunderbolt— and his ghost.”

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Rikki Markson

“I was just emailing to let you know my first book is coming out at the end of this month! It’s called “Men & You” and is published by Harlequin Books. It’s a gorgeous book on love, a bit of pop psychology and a lot of humour! I am SO excited it is finally happening!”

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Elizabeth Farrelly

‘Caro Was Here’ is Elizabeth’s first book for children. She’s completed a number of courses at The Writers’ Studio and is currently working with us on her much awaited, architectural detective novel. ‘Caro Was Here’ published by Walker Books Australia, offers young readers an escape from reality with plenty of action thrown in “Think 80s cult movie The Breakfast Club crossed with 80s TV stalwart MacGyver, played by a group of middle-class kids in Sydney” from Books+Publishing.

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Geraldine Borella

Geraldine Borella, one of our current N&S First Draft Online writers sent us this email last week. “Just thought I would let you know my exciting news. I’ve had a short story ‘Achilles and the Maple Leaf’ shortlisted in the Page Seventeen Magazine (Busybird Publishing) competition. It’s going to be published in October and is in the running to win a first or second place. Fingers crossed.”

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Abbie Widin

“I thought you and Roland would be delighted, I finally launched a book today, Catapult – A Woman’s Guide To Building a 7-Figure Business. It did rather well, getting to #4 of Hot new releases in Women & Business category. I mention the importance of story in being able to communicate your vision in second chapter, and you’ll be keen to know, I directly mention remarkable Roland Fishman and the Writers’ Studio as being instrumental in me learning the arc of story etc.”

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Krew Boylan

Krew Boylan has received funding from Screen Australia for a script she developed in our First and Second Draft courses. “I spread the word around Australia, about the Writers’ Studio, like gospel. Everyone who talks to me about wanting to write, I first ask them if they have read the War of Art, and my next question is if they have heard of the Writers’ Studio in Bronte.” Krew has also been cast to play the title role of the convicted drug smuggler, Schapelle Corby, in the Channel 9 tele-movie Schapelle.

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Owen Ravenscroft

Owen Ravenscroft has launched his first novel, Sink or Swim. The book has been highly commended at the National Literary Awards. Through a combination of bad luck and poor decisions a once privileged grazing family are forced from their historic property. Relocation to a coastal caravan park provides benefits for some and consequences for others, dire consequences. The high cost of low life!

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David Moor

James Valentine and H.G. Nelson launched David Moor’s debut novel, Adios Bondi Noir, which he conceived and developed in our Novel and Script First Draft course. It is an urban crime fiction novel with sand between its toes, liberal doses of humour and plenty of heart, the story woven in and around Australia’s most famous beach.

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Helen Thurloe

Helen Thurloe has won the Varuna Writing Fellowship! She submitted a story that she developed in our Unlocking Creativity course.

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Gaby Mason

Gaby Mason’s short story “Frankie” was selected as a Highly Commended piece in the OutStanding Short Story Competition and will be published in an anthology. The story was one she wrote in the most recent Six-Week Character & Critique Short Story course.

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Cynthia Rowe

“You might be interested to know I received awards in two short story competitions – one in NSW and the other in South Australia, with a story, The Horse Butcher’s Son, based on a story I wrote in your Six Week Short Story Genre course. The Woman’s Day has also published my story ‘T-Bar for Two’, also based on a story I wrote in the same course.”

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John Corrigan

The memoir ‘You Only Want Me for My Mind and Other Bedtime Stories’, I co-wrote with author John Rynn is being published in June and will launch on 7 September at 4MBS studios in Brisbane. “If it wasn’t for the Writers’ Studios’ brilliantly conceived courses I’m sure I wouldn’t be in this position. The sheer ingenuity of your courses gave me permission to release my imagination and let my creativity fly. I am basking in the certainty that being published gives you and I know I have many more books to write.”

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Vanessa Anne Walsh

Vanessa’s debut book – a biography and spiritual handbook – ‘Nights in the Moon Lily Garden’ is now available. Vanessa did her First and Second Draft courses online.

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Karen M. Davis

‘After two unsuccessful manuscripts I was searching for a creative writing course I could do to give me the confidence and tools needed to find a stronger voice and allow me to tap into my imagination. Unlocking Creativity did all this and more. I walked away from this course feeling much more confident in my own abilities as well as full of motivation to start my next manuscript, which turned into my first fictional crime novel Sinister Intent, published this year.’ Karen M. Davis. Sinister Intent is published by Simon & Schuster

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Russell King

Russell King’s story, The Road to Nowhere has been published in The Best Australian Short Stories (edited by Cate Kennedy and published by Black Inc.) Russell said, “Thank you to everyone at the Writers’ Studio for their guidance and support. I could not possibly have had this success without you.”

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Vanessa Stubbs

Vanessa wrote to us with great news – “On August 21 this year my debut novel Star Attraction is out through Penguin. I’d love for you to include me as one of your course success stories in your newsletter.”

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Vanessa Fowler

After a consultation with Roland, Vanessa has gained a US agent – she wrote “I sat down with Roland and in a two hour session we managed to completely redraft both my synopsis and my pitch. Once I sent these out, the reaction was far more positive. I had three agents interested in representing me almost immediately, and it all flowed well from there. Thanks Roland!”

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Jess Black

Jess, one of our Novel & Script tutors and author of many children’s books, has had a lovely newspaper article published about her!

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James Forbes

James Forbes wrote a full feature screenplay called The House of Special Purpose and entered it into the Oaxaca International Film Festival in Mexico. He was chosen as a finalist. He didn’t win, but he came away with eight producers spread across the USA, UK and Germany interested to know more! He wrote, “Dear Roland & Kathleen, Without your support and education throughout your course, I would not be sitting where I am today.”

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Jim Stackpool

Jim Stackpool has released his second book, ‘Delivering Certainty’. He wrote, “I never imagined the opportunities and enhancement of my reputation that has come from writing these books with the help of the Writers’ Studio.”

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