26 July 2023

Announcing Toolkits Season 2!

Express Media is so excited to announce that our annual program for young writers, Toolkits, will run for a second season in 2023!

Toolkits is a 12-week online course for creatives aged 30 and under to develop their skills, workshop, and connect with other writers. There will be three streams in the upcoming season: PoetryGraphic Narrativesand the debut of a brand new stream, Audio Storytelling.

The course includes presentations from guest artists and industry experts, the opportunity to connect with and learn from an experienced mentor, and networking with other young writers/artists/producers. Participants will contribute to a joint published outcome towards the end of the program (format to be determined by the group and facilitator).  

Writers will meet digitally as a group with their facilitator fortnightly on Tuesday or Wednesdays, participating in tailored exercises designed to advance each individual’s skillset in the given craft. These meetings will foster community, encourage writers to develop a regular working practice, and open a space to receive encouragement/guidance. During the off-weeks, each cohort and their facilitator will connect and share work via a private online Discord channel, where there will be opportunities for skill-sharing and ongoing development of new work.

Throughout the season, Express Media will present six Toolkits: Live sessions, where each facilitator will sit down with guest artists and industry experts to discuss genre, industry, and tips for young creatives. These events will be streamed for free on Express Media’s YouTube channel.

Apply for Toolkits: Poetry

Facilitator – Brayden Gilmartin

Brayden Gilmartin is a writer and editor, currently practicing on the unceded lands of the Wurundjeri people in Naarm (Melbourne). They have completed an Honours in Creative Writing at the University of Melbourne, with a thesis focusing on explorations of gender fluidity in digital poetry. In 2020 they completed a poetry residency with Running Dog, and recently were guest editor on Tell Me Like You Mean It, an annual publication of young and/or emerging writers published by Cordite Poetry Review and the Australian Poetry Organisation. Their first poetry collection, Strange Animals, is published by No More Poetry Press, and they are currently working on a longer-form autotheory book. 

Apply for Toolkits: Graphic Narratives

Facilitator – Bailey Sharp

Bailey Sharp is a cartoonist, originally from Atlanta, now living in Naarm. She is the author of My Big Life, which won the bronze award at the 2018 Comic Arts Awards of Australia. Bailey is a member of the Workers Art Collective and is a co-coordinator of Glom Press, a cooperatively-run risograph comics publisher.

Apply for Toolkits: Audio Storytelling

Facilitator – Ruby Smith

Ruby Smith is an arts manager with years of experience in the media. As a broadcaster, writer and educator, and now as SYN FMs General Manager, she has sought to uplift the talents of young people across the arts. Ruby has worked across music, radio, theatre, gallery curation and education, and seeks to develop safe spaces for young creatives to learn and practise.