10 July 2020

Meet the young writers of Toolkits: Poetry 2020

We are pumped to be kicking off our latest Toolkits: Poetry program with 8 talented young poets from across Australia. This year we received many applications, making the selection process a difficult one. Over 12-weeks, participants will explore the histories, language and the changing face of poetry, and be challenged to engage with the art form in unique and different ways. This program will also covers specific forms of poetry such as sonnets, non-traditional constraint-based poetry, poetics of ecology and the everyday, as well as how to hone your poetic voice. 

Toolkits: Poetry will be facilitated by Elena Gomez, a poet and editor based in Melbourne, and author of a number of chapbooks as well as the full-length collection Body of Work. Elena will facilitate the program’s online sessions and workshops, providing one-on-one mentorship and individualised feedback to each young writer. 

For more information on our Toolkits and Toolkits: Live program (which you can participate in right now!) visit our website.

But for now, say hello to the class of 2020!

Zahina Maghrabi

I’m a twenty year old writer/poet, and use writing as a form to express my thoughts and feelings. I am currently writing a novel and regularly post poetry on social media that is quite personal to me and hope to connect with other people in a safe space.

Chrisnaa Senthinathan 

Victor Chrisnaa Senthinathan is a 25-year-old aspiring writer currently studying medicine at Monash University. Mainly interested in writing short stories and poetry, his work aims to explore the dynamics of relationships such as the parent-child, the idea of belonging and tackling the various currents which intersect to shape an identity. He is fascinated by surrealism and romanticism. He has won the Monash University Undergraduate Prize for Creative Writing, and was longlisted for the Liminal Prize, and has been previously published in Voiceworks.

Leila Doneo Baptist

Leila Doneo Baptist is a mixed-race student and young artist. They live between the unceded lands of the Whadjuk Noongar people, and Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation. They have a keen interest in creative practice as an opportunity for interpersonal exchange, productive disruption, decolonial healing and humour. Recently, Leila has explored how existing cultural structures of perception can be manipulated to tell new stories.

Zoë Barnard

Zoë Barnard is a queer poet and writer who grew up along the coast of Western Australia and the beaches of New Zealand’s North Island. She has a BA in creative industries, and she has previously been published in Overland Literary Journal and Visible Ink. She currently lives in Perth with her partner and motorbike.

Eric Jiang

Eric is a Chinese-Australian writer based in Sydney. He has edited his university’s creative literary journal Unsweetened, reviewed dance for ArtsHub, and written ekphrastic poetry for The Waiting Room Project, a gallery located in the Sydney Sexual Health Centre. He has poetry forthcoming in Voiceworks, and is currently part of Laboratory, a playwriting incubator facilitated by Montague Basement. His work contemplates queer futures, family cultural exchange, and fabric. In 2019, he completed his undergraduate thesis on using machine learning to forecast genocide.

Eric most enjoys having too many tabs open, asking convoluted questions, and dancing. 

He also tweets at @squeric_

Kiki Amberber

Kiki Amberber lives and makes work on Gadigal Land in Warrang/Sydney. She is interested in digital intimacies, QPoC futurities, archives, and care.

She studies gender and cultural studies and media at the University of Sydney, and volunteers at FBi Radio. She has been published in Runway Journal, Voiceworks, and Honi Soit. She really likes stone fruit and the sun.

Leela O’Connor

Leela is a 21yo English Literature and Politics graduate from Adelaide. She enjoys writing and visual art, especially poetry and lino printing. Her passion for the humanities involves a research focus on how identity intersects with spatiality, temporality and governance. These themes similarly feature in Leela’s writing, informed by her varied cultural experiences as a mixed-race, second generation Australian. She is also a cofounder of the Edith Dornwell Scholarly Society, a feminist discussion club at Adelaide University. 

Liv Douglas

Liv is a third-generation nerd raised on a mixed diet of Harry Potter, Jane Austen and Dr Who in Newcastle, Australia. 

She is a perpetual student currently enrolled in a Bachelor of Information Technology (Interactive Media) and is interested in combining technology and art.