Literature Wales supports 10 freelance writers to devise and create digital content and projects
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Literature Wales’ offices are closed, and much of our activity is postponed. However, our commitment to inspiring communities, developing writers and celebrating Wales’ literary culture remains as strong as ever.
On 1 April 2020 we announced a round of funding for freelance writers to devise and create original digital content and projects. This call-out was intended to allow freelance writers to continue to receive paid work during this uncertain time. In addition, the content created will entertain, inspire and educate creative audiences, early career writers, children and adult participants across Wales.
The scheme was strongly competitive, with many innovative proposals submitted. From these submissions, ten have been commissioned, and their proposed content and activities are sure to benefit writers, readers and creative audiences during this unsettling time.
The writers selected to develop their content are Connor Allen, Taz Rahman, Özgür Uyanık, Claire Fayers, Claire Boot, Julia Forster, Will Philpin, Tamar Eluned Williams, Mared Lewis and Rhys Miles Thomas. The commissions selected include online creative writing courses for specific groups; a storytelling toolkit for children; online resources for early career writers; video poems and performances; how-to videos on a variety of platforms; digital writing prompts for children; and online empowerment essays. Information about each project is available below, with further details and author biographies to be published on the Literature Wales website soon.
Due to the success of the first round of funding, Literature Wales is pleased to announce that a second round will open on Monday 4 May. This second round of funding is offered in partnership with the Royal College of Psychiatrists Wales, and will have an increased focus on health and wellbeing. Further details will be announced on the Literature Wales website and social media channels on Monday 4 May.
The Llif:Flow creative collective will develop a project called The One Page, working to support individuals experiencing adverse mental health through a series of online campaigns. The project will be led by Will Philpin.
Those projects delivered through the medium of Welsh include Rhys Miles Thomas’ series of video tutorials on how to share fiction on various platforms such as TikTok and Instagram. The full series will be available on YouTube and is aimed at all audiences: those yet to write their first story and those who are widely published.
Mared Lewis‘ project is aimed at writers who are Welsh learners. This series of workshops will see participants writing a personal chain story by responding to new challenges and tasks from each session, whilst also providing practical advice and support and individual tutorials.
Claire Boot’s ‘Write at Home’ project is a series of 15 short videos featuring creative writing activities using everyday household items. From cutlery characters to coat hanger costumes, these videos will help you find inspiration in your own home.
Julia Forster will write a series of practical resources for early career and established writers who are interested in securing the interest of an agent. These articles will explore how to approach agents, refining your pitch, what can agents do for writers in Wales, and more.
Tamar Eluned Williams will be developing a bilingual “Home Storytelling Kit” for primary ages. The storytelling packs will use several online platforms to encourage and support parents and children to learn and tell traditional stories of Wales and to develop their own stories.
Connor Allen will be creating an album but not in the form of music, in the form of other creative mediums. An album of different aspects of his life all collated to make a series of reads. He will work in partnership with illustrators and photographers to add visual stimulus to the collection of work. The best way to describe the project is as an Inter Disciplinary Remix.
Write Where You Are is a series of creative writing videos with supporting activities and writing challenges for primary school children by writer Claire Fayers. With the help of her author friends, Claire will go on a hunt for story ideas around the house.
Özgür Uyanık and Durre Shahwar will be working with 10-12 selected participants from BAME, LGBT+ , neurodivergent and disabled backgrounds, who are currently underrepresented in the literary sphere. Participants will take part in a webinar and will receive editorial feedback on their work.
Taz Rahman will create a three pronged digital literary project with the aim of inspiring hope through a focus on poetry in the face of lockdown isolation – a video poem, interviews promoting Wales based poets, and a recording of a virtual literary evening of poetic words by new and established poets. The project’s wider aim is to provide a showcase of the Welsh poetry scene to a new digital audience.