Letter from the President 04 April 2021

It’s a late email this week. I have been out and about enjoying the sunshine – what fabulous weather for the Easter weekend. I hope you have been able to make the most of it.

I spent most of the weekend on beaches in the Peninsular, cooling off in the bracing water. I enjoy swimming although I am wary of what lurks beneath the surface, especially since I patted something distinctively mammalian mid-way through the Half Moon Bay ocean race at the beginning of last year. I am not a fast swimmer either. I recently noticed a friend’s son was wearing a cap from the Australia Day Swim and mentioned I had also competed in the race. She thanked me for telling her about the race because she had entered and had placed third. I, on the other hand, came third from the back, which caused great amusement and then a lengthy conversation about how predators pick off the weak ones trailing behind. I am now feeling considerably motivated to swim a bit faster next time I enter a competition!

Thankfully writing competitions are much less fearsome. Although rejection can be disappointing and judges sometimes fierce, I haven’t heard of any entrants’ having their heels nipped at or having to ‘write for their lives’. Entering writing competitions or submitting manuscripts to journals can be encouraging, inspiring and rewarding. Even though the majority of competitions are not as prestigious as the Miles Franklin or the Stella Award, they can still help you build your portfolio and reputation as a writer. If you haven’t yet sent in your submission for Sparx the Society’s annual publication of members’ writing, then please do. This year the theme is COVID.

There are also a number of other opportunities to keep a look out for. The Society of Women Writers NSW is currently running its biennial national writing competition for women writers aged eighteen years and over (click HERE for information) and SWWVic will shortly be announcing details of the Kathryn Purnell Poetry Prize. Watch this space.

Until next week, happy writing, Caroline.

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