Express Media is delighted to present Tracks a travelling pop-up program for young writers that brings the best of Express Media’s workshops, masterclasses, networking opportunities and special events to communities across Australia.

On Saturday August 11, we’re bringing the Tracks program to Bendigo, partnering with Writers Victoria and Bendigo Writers Festival to take the best of Express Media right to your backyard. If you’re aged 14 to 25 and have a love of writing and storytelling, Tracks: Bendigo is an exciting day-long event just for you.

9am to 5pm, Saturday August 11
Bendigo Trades Hall
34-40 View St
Bendigo, VIC 3550

The Bendigo Trades Hall is wheelchair accessible with a ramp at the entrance, and accessible bathrooms.


Tracks is free for Express Media members to participate in and attend. If you’re not a member already, Tracks: Bendigo costs $25 and includes membership to Express Media (normally $25) and Writers Victoria (normally $55).

Plus, the first ten participants to register will also receive a free one-year print subscription to Voiceworks (normally $60).


9.00am – 9.30am

Meet and Greet Games

9.30am – 10.00am

Grab a cup of coffee and join us to meet other young writers like you.

World Building, Setting and Identity Workshop with Maxine Beneba Clarke

10.00am – 1.00pm

Join Maxine Beneba Clarke as she explores the building blocks of fiction including methods for creating strong characters, developing sound plot, structuring work, and establishing and developing setting and atmosphere. You’ll also be introduced to methods of critically evaluating and editing your own work and the work of others.


Crafting Character & Representing Real Life Workshop with Lian Low

10.00am – 1.00pm

Enveloping a range of forms, the topic of nonfiction can be broad and unwieldy. Join Lian Low to unpack the fundamentals of good nonfiction storytelling, including how to frame the narrative, the role of the writer in the work, representing character, and the ethics of writing real-life. You’ll also be introduced to the skills a nonfiction writer has up their sleeve, including how to effectively interview sources and research your topic.


1.00pm – 1.40pm

After a big morning of writing, join us for a bite to eat before firing up your brain again for a jam-packed afternoon.

Off The Beaten Track: Opportunities for Young Writers

1.40pm – 2.40pm

Where do you start when you want to write? How do you get your work in front of a reader? Join Express Media and a line-up word-nerds from publications and organisations to find out what opportunities there are for you in Bendigo and beyond.

With Bethany Atkinson-Quinton (Express Media), Deanne Sheldon-Collins (Writers Victoria), Cecile Shanahan (Bendigo Writers Festival), Em Burgess (Write Stuff), Simon Wooldridge (Bendigo Writers Council), Adalya Nash Hussein (Voiceworks and The Lifted Brow) and Marion Drummond (Ink Slingers).

Editing and Publishing: First Times and Best Practice with Mira Schlosberg

2.40pm – 3.40pm

What happens once you’ve finished writing your story? Is an editor just a grammar-pedantic wielder of a red pen? Join Mira Schlosberg to unpack the relationship between writers and editors, how to prepare your writing for submitting, and what to expect when you’re selected for publication.


Ready to Read: Performing Your Work with Hawiine Kadir

2.40pm – 3.40pm

Sharing your work with other people is always nerve-wrecking, but what happens when it’s also off the page? Join Hawiine Kadirfor a crash course in how to perform your work aloud to build your confidence, build your community, and improve your writing.

Afternoon Tea

3.40pm – 4.00pm

Twilight Tales: Showcase Event & Literary Networking

4.00pm – 5.00pm

Hear some of Victoria’s best young writers share their words in this special line-up with Manisha Anjali, Adalya Nash Hussein, Dean Gervasoni, Lasith Kulasekara, Taylor Clayton.



Adalya Nash Hussein | @adalyanh

Adalya Nash Hussein is a writer, editor and comic-maker. Her work has been published in Voiceworks, The Lifted Brow and Going Down Swinging. She is the Online Editor of The Lifted Brow and a nonfiction editor for Voiceworks. She has been programmed at the National Young Writers Festival, YWCA’s ‘Dear Diary’, The Wheeler Centre, and is currently an Emerging Writer’s Festival writer in residence at the Melbourne Recital Centre.

Bethany Atkinson-Quinton | @bethanyaq

Bethany Atkinson-Quinton is a broadcaster, producer, writer and educator based in Narrm (Melbourne). She is the Creative Producer at Express Media, Co-Founder and Co-Director of community podcast network Broadwave and broadcasts storytelling show The Glasshouse on Triple R. She has created audio documentaries for multiple broadcasters and podcasts including ABC Radio National, The Arts Centre and All The Best. Passionate about connecting audiences to storytelling, she has presented podcast workshops with The Walkley Foundation, Writers Victoria and Melbourne Writers Festival.

Cecile Shanahan | @exgrumelart

Cecile Shanahan is an editor and educator with over twenty years’ experience working in various communications and teaching roles. Cecile currently works with young people across Bendigo as Editor of 3556Magazine and The Vox Bendigo Book Young Writers Anthology. She a proofreader for ALEA’s journal Literacy Learning: The Middle Years and is also the Communications Officer for Bendigo Writers Festival, helping to coordinate the festival’s youth events such as Text Marks the Spot Schools Day and Sam the Story Tram.

Deanne Sheldon-Collins

Deanne Sheldon-Collins is Program Officer at Writers Victoria and Co-Manager of the National Young Writers’ Festival. By night, she freelances as an editor and writer, and she’s worked on projects across fiction, non-fiction, copywriting, and academia. She has a Master of Arts (Writing, Editing, and Publishing) from The University of Queensland, which built on her undergraduate studies in literature and writing. Deanne worked for several years in bookselling and was Reviews Editor of speculative fiction magazine ‘Aurealis’ for three years, before which she was a reviewer.

Dean Gervasoni | @starstuffwriter

Dean Gervasoni is a poet who focuses his work primarily on queer themes, mental health, space, magic and the changing world around him. His poems have been published in issue #2 of Afflatus Magazine, Kings, Queens and Queers, which is available for purchase on Magcloud, and he is a regular reader at The Write Stuff, a Bendigo-based collection of writers of all genres who meet every two months to share their work. He also has one well-received self-published anthology of poems under his belt, titled Growing, and hopes to release another later this year, with dreams of more professional publication in the future

Em Burgess-Gilchrist | @poetswhosing

Em Burgess-Gilchrist is a poet, writer and occasional songstress. As a co-founder of The Write Stuff, a Bendigo-based writing collective, whom host bi-monthly spoken word events throughout the region, Em has a passion for assisting people of all ages, and from all walks of life, to develop confidence in their writing and seek out opportunities for creative growth. Em’s current projects include: raising two happy children, her first poetry collection and the development of a multimedia project. The Write Stuff also plan to publish an anthology featuring the work of local writers throughout the year.

Hawiine Kadir | @SoretiK

Soreti, known also as Hawiine, is a female, Oromo, multidisciplinary creative who’s expression includes but is not limited to performance poetry, writing, music and entrepreneurship. Her work draws on the density of her experience to contribute to our collective conversation on freedom, equity, womanhood, injustice and progress. She is passionate about her people, about the global indigenous experience, about seeing the continent of her birth embrace itself, about increasing her own and our awareness on the racial and gender dynamics that hold us back and about every person on this earth knowing of and living through their inherent greatness. Soreti’s artistic and leadership journey has seen her speak, perform, collaborate and lead in a variety of contexts across so-called-australia and the wider world, from the international aid and development industry, grassroots community organising, festivals, conferences, panels and numerous poetry features.

Lasith Kulasekara

Lasith Kulasekara likes to do things that add a spark of creativity and a splash of colour into this world, literally. He is from Sinhalese background and moved from Norway when he was 5 months old. Then, he moved to Adelaide and stayed there for 5 years and now he lives in Bendigo for the time being. He is an artist, and loves to create magnificent acrylic landscapes that depict places he’s been to. He began painting only 2 and a half years ago, inspired during school by a well-known Bendigo artist by the name of Terry Jarvis, during one of his watercolour workshops. In his spare time, he also loves to write fictional stories, preferably mysterious and adventurous ones. He also plays some sports, such as table tennis and tennis and for instruments, he plays the guitar and violin.

Lian Low | @Lian__Low

From 2009-2016, Lian Low was an editor and a board member of Peril. She writes across spoken word, creative non-fiction and memoir. Her writing is in Growing up Asian in Australia, Kill Your Darlings, Right Now, The Lifted Brow and ArtsHub. In 2015, she was a recipient of a Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowship and a City of Literature Travel Fund to travel to the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival and the Melaka Art and Performance Festival, Malaysia. She also collaborated with dancer and choreographer Victoria Chiu on the performance text of Do you speak Chinese? which premiered at the Malthouse.

Manisha Anjali | @manishaanjali

Manisha Anjali is a Melbourne-based poet and performer. She is the author of Sugar Kane Woman, a collection of poems about the dreams and hallucinations of exiled Indo-Fijian women. Her work also appears in Seizure, Blackmail Press, Mascara Literary Review, IKA Journal and Lor Journal. Manisha was a recipient of a Hot Desk Fellowship from The Wheeler Centre, and recently completed the Emerging Cultural Leaders programme at Footscray Community Arts Centre. She has performed at various venues and festivals across Australia and New Zealand.

Marion Drummond

In a long career working with adolescents in schools, Marion has had a range of roles, but she ways enjoyed and appreciated the range of interests, talents and potential young people displayed in all sorts of different areas (e.g. sport, community, various types of the Arts to name some). She often worked beyond her own skills and capacity. Then the realisation occurred, that her real skill was in working a ‘Dogsbodying Space Maker’ role. Some say, ‘saying I am a dogsbody’ was putting herself down; she deny’s thatI. Not everyone can take that role. In the last 20 or so years the Literary Arts have been a major focus complete with ‘dogsbodying’, demonstrated in the Ink Slingers writing group. Marion dabbles in poetry and gentle writing.

Maxine Beneba Clarke | @slamup

Maxine Beneba Clarke is an Australian writer of Afro-Caribbean heritage. She is the author of the ABIA award-winning short fiction collection Foreign Soil. Her latest poetry collection Carrying The World won the 2017 Victorian Premier’s Award for Poetry, and her critically acclaimed memoir The Hate Race was shortlisted for The Stella Prize. She writes for The Saturday Paper.

Mira Schlosberg | @miraschlosberg

Mira Schlosberg is a writer, comics artist, and editor who makes work about queerness and spirituality. They have been published in The Lifted Brow, Rabbit Poetry Journal, and Seizure, among others, and they were a 2017 Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellow. Mira is the editor of Voiceworks, edits comics at Scum, and subedits at Gusher. You can find them on Twitter @miraschlosberg.

Simon Wooldridge

Simon Wooldridge has worked for publishing companies since the 1990s in Australia and the UK. He is the co-founder of Bendigo-based writers’ collective, The Write Stuff, which regularly hosts spoken word events in the region. In late 2017 he published Music Town, a book about the Bendigo music scene. His writing has also been published in the Bendigo Weekly, Vive Le Rock, Painted Words and Crime Factory. He is currently writing a travel memoir.

Taylor Clayton

Taylor Clayton has been writing since she was young. She has fifteen pieces published in Bendigo Kangan Institute’s Painted Words 2017, and in 2013 won Bendigo Senior Secondary’s Goodman Poetry Award. Taylor has plans to publish her own collection of poems, while also maintaining the hope of one day writing the novel she’s had on her mind for eight years. You can usually find Taylor with a cup of coffee in her hand and a dreamy look on her face. She is currently studying at La Trobe University, completing her first year of a Bachelor of Creative Arts.

Tracks: Bendigo is supported by the Regional Centre for Culture Program, a Victorian Government initiative in partnership with the Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation and The City of Greater Bendigo.