Vanessa Berry, Belinda Castles and Beth Yahp have been announced as the recipients of the 2021 Write North Writers’ Group Residency program.

The program, which is valued at $30,000, is a career-elevating opportunity for a group of NSW writers, made possible by the NSW Government through Create NSW and the Byron Writers Festival.

Parliamentary Secretary for the Arts Ben Franklin said after the tough year that has faced artists, this announcement was very exciting news.

“This partnership with the Byron Writers Festival ensures that local stories are supported and heard and that artists are provided with exceptional opportunities to advance their skills and develop their talents,” Mr Franklin said.

“This residency will provide Vanessa, Belinda and Beth with access to unique creative development opportunities through mentorship, workshops, and group discussions, as well as collaborative experiences to support their literary aspirations.”

Minster for the Arts Don Harwin said the Fellowship is designed to support NSW writers and would provide a significant career pathway for the three writers.

“The residency with Byron Writers Festival is an exciting career-milestone, which represents skill advancement and development, and which has the potential to open up doors for our three successful recipients,” Mr Harwin said.

“The Write North Writers’ Group Residency is a platform that champions and develops the voices of NSW writers, which allows them to take risks, and most importantly continue to share meaningful stories.”

Byron Writers Festival Director Edwina Johnson said Byron Writers Festival is proud to offer this extraordinary professional development opportunity once again.

“Previous recipients of the Write North Residency have described it as life changing. Byron Writers Festival is thrilled to welcome these three brilliant writers to immerse themselves in the magic of this writing retreat in the Northern Rivers,” Ms Johnson said.

The Residency will take place in Byron Bay in the future when it is safe to do so. The total $30,000 in-kind and cash value of the residency includes funding towards travel and accommodation in Byron Bay, and up to $10,000 financial support for the group to continue their writing after the residency.

The Residency provides the successful group with immersive mentorship from award-winning NSW author Charlotte Wood. 

Create NSW offers opportunities for individuals and groups to receive support through other Fellowships and the Arts and Cultural Funding Program. See the Create NSW website for more information