Aspiring writers launch Painted Words

Aspiring writers studying at Bendigo TAFE have launched Painted Words 2021, a perfect bound book containing more than 100 original short stories, flash fiction, poetry, novel extracts, and non-fiction pieces.

Themed ‘Regeneration’, the 672-page book was produced by a team of fourteen students enrolled in professional writing and editing courses.

The book was formally launched by Michelle McGoldrick, secretary and communications committee member at Bendigo Writers’ Council, on 2 December. Held at Bendigo City Campus’ Innovation Hub, the event included poetry and short story readings by participating students.

Bendigo TAFE head of campus Dave Richardson said the annual production of Painted Words offered aspiring authors an opportunity to enter the industry with published material under their names.

Painted Words 2021 is the result of creativity and the hard work of our professional writing and editing students, and I congratulate them on a wonderful publication and launch,” said Mr Richardson.

Painted Words embodies the value of TAFE and the hands-on opportunities available to our students who now, as published authors, have a clear edge as they pursue success in a highly competitive industry.

“Many of our graduates have already established themselves as acclaimed authors, journalists, scriptwriters and publishers. The talents of our current cohort is evident through Painted Words 2021 and we wish them the very best for their future.”

Student Sheree Pratt said participating in Painted Words 2021 has given her the confidence to pursue a career in writing.

“Having autism has presented a lot of extra barriers to me having a fulfilling career. My life has been littered with knock-backs and dead-end career paths. Because my stories and poetry are published in Painted Words, I have the confidence and belief that I can turn my passions into something meaningful. I now have the drive to get out there and try to do just that," said Ms Pratt.

"After completing the Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing and continuing to build my credibility as a writer, I plan to carry on telling my stories through poetry, music and ultimately a novel."

Student Sharron Jamisson, who contributed poetry, short fiction and non-fiction pieces for Painted Words 2021, said she has now gained vital skills in digital publishing.

"Little did I realise when I enrolled in the Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing how the course offered much more than realising my dream of becoming an author,” said Ms Jamisson.

“It also allowed me to reskill for the digital publishing industry. By combining course content with previous educational qualifications and prior work experience, I've begun forging a new career pathway as a freelance writer and editor.”

Participating in Painted Words 2021 was a personally and professionally enriching experience for Ms Jamisson.

"Thanks to the dedication and hard work of supportive teachers, coupled with the persistence and determination of my fellow students, I finally get to showcase newly acquired skills as a lyricist, poet, non-fiction writer, and storyteller,” said Ms Jamisson.

“I feel both proud and excited about what the future holds and immensely grateful to Bendigo TAFE for making it possible to realise my hopes and dreams.

"The launch of Painted Words marks an important milestone for me both personally and professionally. Now I can say with confidence, I made it."

An annual Bendigo TAFE student compiled anthology, Painted Words is in its 17th year of production which has seen more than 1.6 million words published by nearly four hundred emerging central Victorian writers.

The annual anthology also includes submissions from Bendigo TAFE writing alumni, with UK-based writer/publisher Simon Woolridge participating in the 2021 edition.

Painted Words 2021 is available at Bendigo TAFE’s City Campus library and the Bendigo Library.

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