Representing Wales: Launching the 2024 programme

Published Tue 16 Apr 2024 - By Literature Wales
Representing Wales: Launching the 2024 programme
It’s that time of year again! 14 writers are about to embark on our year-long professional development programme, Representing Wales. The writers were selected by an independent assessment panel following an open call-out during the autumn of 2023 which attracted over 100 applications.   

The Representing Wales Programme: 

Representing Wales is a 12-month programme funded by the National Lottery through the Arts Council of Wales, and The Foyle Foundation. This time, the programme – which is for writers under-represented in the Welsh literature sector – has particular focus on developing new works for an adult audience.  

The programme offers an impressive range of activities and practical support for writers. They will each be awarded a £3,000 bursary along with £300 for expenses, which in previous years, has supported writers to meet with prospective agents, attend literary festivals in Wales and beyond, supported submissions to various competitions and attend writing retreats. Each writer will also be matched with a mentor of their choice, who will offer bespoke feedback and guidance on their manuscripts as well as their wider career as an author.  

In addition, Literature Wales will develop and deliver a diverse and informative range of sessions to help nurture the talent, development, and careers of the cohort. Over the next 12 months the writers will enjoy residential courses, workshops, masterclasses and reading rooms to develop their craft and further their writing career. They’ll be supported in making new connections within the industry as well as becoming critical readers for each other.  

After the 12-month programme comes to an end, continued support will be made available to the cohort to ensure that they have access to the advice, resources, and tools necessary to reach their goals. 

The Representing Wales programme is co-created with the writers, tailoring sessions to support their individual ambitions for the year. We continuously listen to feedback and reflect on guidance from the participants, to ensure that programme is fit-for-purpose and as useful as it can be to each individual who takes part in it.  

Previous writers on the Representing Wales programme have continued to develop their careers by gaining agent representation, publishing books, making shortlists of national writing competitions and have become leaders in national roles such as National Poet of Wales, Bardd Plant Cymru and Children’s Laureate Wales 

To hear more about the previous three cohorts’ experiences, head to the testimonials section of the Representing Wales project page.  

2024/25 Cohort 

From Wrexham to Machynlleth, Pontypridd to Cardiff, this year’s cohort are based across Wales. They write in a variety of genres such as creative non-fiction, fiction, spoken word and poetry and explore themes like identity, connection, and history. Each writer brings with them a unique and creative perspective, which will encourage, challenge, and support the development of themselves and their fellow writers on the programme.  

Learn about each writer on the Representing Wales project page. 

Over the next 12 months, the cohort will look to achieve their individual goals, which this year range from finishing their manuscript, building connections with other writers, developing workshops, and gaining a better understanding of the different routes into publication. 

Four of the fourteen writers will be developing new work in Welsh during the year. With expressed interest, the other writers will be offered the opportunity to develop and improve their Welsh language skills alongside the core programme of workshops and events, thanks to our partnership with the National Centre for Learning Welsh, which has supported writers on our Writer Development programmes over the past two years.   

The 14 writers will meet face-to-face for the first time for their first residential masterclass held at Tŷ Newydd Writing Centre in May.  

Future rounds 

The open call-out for the fifth round of Representing Wales will be launched during the summer of 2024. Keep an eye on our social media and sign up to our newsletter to be the first to know. The focus of the next round of Representing Wales will be announced after a consultation process.  

In the meantime, as part of our continuous effort to support the development of all Welsh writers, a selection of workshops will be made open to the public throughout this year. These free online sessions will be announced throughout the year across our social media channels, newsletter and the Representing Wales website page. Make sure to subscribe, follow and bookmark!  

For further information on the programme, and to learn more about each writer, visit the Representing Wales project page.