Last year I started a little spreadsheet called Critical Mass to help culture editors connect with a wider range of critics. It’s now got over 140 critics listed and personally I use it all the time to recommend people for different gigs. It’s also spawned a couple of other lists:
The First Nations and People of Colour in Publishing network has also created a database of freelancers in publishing. It includes editors, designers, sensitivity readers, translators and proofreaders (but not writers).
There are so many resources available if you’re looking to work with underrepresented writers, so there’s really no excuse!
Applications are now open for Djed Press’s editorial mentorship, a 10-week crash course on editing and publishing aimed at training an aspiring editor of colour.
You get one-on-one training with industry professionals (including me, Evelyn Araluen, Khalid Warsame, Adolfo Aranjuez, Dr. Tresa LeClerc, Marisa Wikramanayake and Djed Press founder and editorial director Hella Ibrahim), paid editing experience, and a lot of other material resources and support. I’ll be delivering the non-fiction editing intensives in week 5 (editing news, commentary, and criticism) and week 6 (editing narrative non-fiction, memoir and personal essays).
You don’t need to have any editing experience but you do need to be keen, based in Australia, at least 18 years old, and (obviously) a person of colour. Full details of the mentorship here. Applications close Monday 29 March 2021.
Liz and I are running a short course at Maribyrnong Community Centre! Best of all, it’s free for participants.
Over four fortnightly workshops, develop research and storytelling skills with community historians Liz Crash and Jinghua Qian (co-creators of Underfoot, a multimedia project uncovering Footscray’s history). Participants will learn how to write, produce and share their own stories, and contribute to a visual presentation displayed at the centre. This hands-on workshop series is open to participants of all ages and skill levels. Please note: participants will need to attend all four sessions.
Thu 18 Mar, 1 Apr, 15 Apr, 29 Apr 2021 2 pm to 4 pm Maribyrnong Community Centre 9 Randall St, Maribyrnong, Victoria 3032 free | booking required
Are you a South Asian arts writer living in Victoria? Sangam: Performing Arts Festival of South Asia and Diaspora has put together this pretty incredible paid mentorship. You get:
a workshop with me and Sonia Nair on 6 Feb 2021
support to write a response to a work or works at Sangam 2021
assistance securing a publication outcome with Sangam’s publishing partners, Peril Magazine and South Asian Today
$300 participant fee
EOIs close this Fri 15 Jan so apply now! And follow Sangam on Facebook or Instagram for more info about the festival. The full program will be released 17 Jan and the festival takes place 20 Feb to 13 Mar at Abbotsford Convent, the Drum Theatre, Dancehouse Melbourne and Bunjil Place.
Hopefully it’s a useful resource for artists, venues, publicists and commissioning editors to access a wider pool of critics. You can view the spreadsheet here. Please share with all your critically-minded mates.