Sam van Zweden



stories that matter

It’s Here!

Last night saw the launch of the 2012 Emerging Writers’ Festival. It was a brilliant show, complete with bum-dancing, crumping in a row-boat, chair persons almost crying while thanking Lisa for an amazing 3 year captaincy, and the incomparable Tully Hansen winning the Monash Prize. Congratulations too to Michelle Li for taking out the Monash component;  we were lucky enough to hear some of her entry last night, and it was lovely.

I’d like to apologize in advance to my partner, my body, my diet, my house, my washing pile, my skin… My mum, who won’t hear from me for a few weeks… My final assessment for not getting the attention it needed pre-festival and now will be completed in an exhaustion fug… If last night was any indicator at all, by the end of these eleven days, I’m going to be so happy, but incredibly tired, too.

As I tweeted late last night – my life right now? Fuck yeah! Sometimes everything just comes up aces, and that’s exactly what’s happening right now. Good one, life!

Today I’ll be working at the Business of Being a Writer Masterclass, and meeting a heap of brilliant people no doubt at the artists’ party this evening. I will never stop being astounded by how many great people are involved in the festival.

Yeah, and this is just day 2. Imagine how gushy this is going to get by the end of the festival! #loveattack

Monash Prize Shortlist Announced

The Monash University Undergraduate Prize for Creative Writing is kind of a big deal. It gives a really good opportunity to undergraduate writers. If you’re an emerging, undergraduate, reasonably unpublished writer, then you’ll know what I’m talking about. It’s not an easy position to be in, it’s hard to get attention to your work, and getting paid or published is rare. That’s why the large stack of cash ($5000!) and publication with Penguin given for this prize is also a pretty big deal.

This morning, the short list for the Monash Prize was announced, and I’m absolutely thrilled to see three close friends of mine on there, representin’ for RMIT, our course, and their BRILLIANT amounts of talent. Overall, I’m really glad to see the list stretches across so many different universities, and contains an almost equal spread of men and ladies. Given these submissions were read blind, it’s really nice to see such an even playing field.

Well done to all the shortlisted writers. I’m looking forward to seeing the prize awarded at the EWF event, Stories that Matter.

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