APPLY FOR A RESIDENCY - Applications for Bundanon's 2025 Artists in Residence program are now open


South Coast Writers
In Conversation

Hear from participants of the 2024 South Coast Writers Centre Emerging & Established Writers Group Retreat share insights into their current writing projects and the unique writer-in-residence experience at Bundanon. 

Join us for an enriching afternoon as Dr. Sarah Nicholson, Director of the South Coast Writers Centre (SCWC), engages in a captivating conversation with residents from the 2024 SCWC Emerging & Established Writers Group Retreat.

Immerse yourself in the literary world as this talented group shares excerpts from their current works in progress, delves into discussions about their projects, and reflects on the unique experience of being writers in residence at Bundanon. 



About the writers…

The 2024 SCWC Emerging & Established Writers Group Retreat at Bundanon welcomes writers working in fiction, creative non-fiction, playwriting, and poetry. Join us in celebrating the diverse voices and literary talents that make up this vibrant writers’ community. 

Brooke Boland is a freelance writer interested in embodiment and identity and has a PhD in Contemporary Women’s Writing from the University of NSW. Previously, she worked as a casual academic, teaching undergraduates at UNSW and Victoria University. She now works part time as an arts journalist, writing profiles and reviews for various publications. Her essays have been published by Meanjin, Overland, and the Sydney Review of Books. In late 2024, Upswell will publish her first collection of essays.

Amber Stewart writes within the literary traditions of speculative fiction, magical realism, erotica and fairy tale to produce works that hark back to yet break away from these to become what she calls ‘Odd Grays’ – fae tales to defamiliarise the everyday which enables them to function subversively, and thus offer resistance to systems of oppression, and to forge a counter-discursive space wherein it’s conceivable to think about what we take for granted and to awaken to that which ‘goes without saying’ and disrupt it. She is an alumni of Varuna and UoW, Dean’s Scholar Bachelor of Creative Arts – Creative Writing.

Elisa Cristallo is a writer with a great love of storytelling, from the complete novel to the family stories only ever told round the dinner table. Elisa wrote the mini-series ‘Welcome to the Family’ which aired on Melbourne community television (Channel 31) and earned four Antenna Award nominations. Her sci-fi novel ‘The Last Famine,’ set in a dystopian Australia, is available on KDP and her work has also been published in the literary journal Verity La and the sci-fi magazine CREATurE. Elisa has written two plays for the fringe festival circuit, including for Sydney and Adelaide Fringe. She is a two-time recipient of Blacktown Council’s Creative Arts fund, holds a Bachelor of Social Science and is currently completing her Master of Creative Writing.

Emily Gibbs has been obsessed with writing stories since she was nine. From year four to 12 she was a student of Bernard Cohen’s The Writing Workshop and has since worked with him to deliver creative writing workshops to hundreds of primary and high school students. She completed a creative writing degree at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). Her short story, Late For Lunch, was published in the 2021 UTS Writer’s Anthology. She enjoys writing about country Australia – the vastness, remoteness, and the people. She currently works as a Commercial Journalist for Australian Community Media, covering the South Coast newspapers. She is also the writer behind the quarterly South Coast Leisure Times magazine.

Holly Trenaman is a writer and filmmaker, working on comedic adult fiction and children’s picture books, while freelancing in the film industry. She has completed a Bachelor of Screen Production from AFTRS, and a Masters of Creative Writing from UTS. She is the writer and director of award-winning short film ‘Dating Violet’ and has had journal articles and short stories published in Astray, Rachel’s List, Uni Junkee, Young Writers Collective Anthology and UTS Anthology, which have been great milestones while working on a longer piece. Her writing has been shortlisted by the Newcastle Fresh Ink Prize and the Lane Cove Short Story Award.

Bron Xavier is an emerging writer, working on what will hopefully be her first novel. She was accepted into the Faber Academy ‘Writing a Novel’ in Sydney, of which she is in the second half of the program. She is a volunteer fiction editor for Overland Magazine.

Rose Searby is a writer and historian who writes about landscape, animals and what it means to be human. She has worked as a consultant historian and sessional academic and holds a PhD in history from the University of Technology, Sydney. Her publications include works of non-fiction and history textbooks for secondary level. In 2022 she was awarded a South Coast Writers Centre Emerging Writers Mentorship and in 2024 she was awarded a Kill Your Darlings Mentorship. Din is her first work of fiction.

Ada Lester has written opinion, journalism, short stories and essays for the Guardian, ABC News, Voiceworks, the Hunter Writers Centre, the Newcastle Writers Festival, and others. She has taught creative writing and poetry to primary school children through the Newcastle Writers Festival. Last year, she was a writer in residence at Lighthouse Arts on the Whibayganba/Nobbys headland. Her manuscript – a novel – was recently longlisted for the Richell Prize from Hachette Australia.

Bundanon’s Artists in Residence Program

Applications for our highly anticipated 2025 Artists in Residence program will open in April 2024. Be part of an extraordinary multi-arts residency program that welcomes applicants from various disciplines, including visual and performing arts, music, academic research, dance, and literature. Don’t miss this opportunity to explore, create, and thrive in the breathtaking setting of Bundanon. 

Find out more about Bundanon’s Artists in Residence program.



Tales of Land and Sea

This event is part of Bundanon’s program of live events for current exhibition Tales of Land and Sea.

Tales of Land and Sea brings together three distinct projects exploring storytelling, mythological narratives, migration and the diasporic experience. Drawing from both personal narratives and Eastern mythologies, each project highlights age-old themes of longing, displacement, cultural connection and belonging.

Discover more about the exhibition and upcoming events.

Book Now

Free with Art Museum entry


Bundanon, 170 Riversdale Road, Illaroo

Dates & Times
19/05/2024 - 19/05/2024 The Boyd Education Centre, Bundanon

Bundanon acknowledges the people of the Dharawal and Dhurga language groups as the traditional owners of the land within our boundaries, and recognises their continuous connection to culture, community and Country.

In Dharawal the word Bundanon means deep valley.

This website contains names, images and voices of deceased Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.