ACT Heritage Library Manuscript Collection

HMSS 0048 Fellowship of Australian Writers, ACT Branch Records

Scope and Data Notes
Call Number

HMSS 0048


Fellowship of Australian Writers, ACT Branch Records

Date Range

1948 - 1998


3.39m  (16 Manuscript boxes, 1 oversized package)

Access Conditions


Copying Conditionsnot stated
Related CollectionsHMSS 0063 Anne Edgeworth Collection

The Fellowship of Australian Writers (FAW) was one of the first national bodies to be established in Australia. Founded in NSW by Dame Mary Gilmore in 1928, there are fellowships in every state and territory, as well as regional groups in major centres through out Australia.

The FAW, ACT Branch held its inaugural meeting on 29 May 1950, providing opportunities for writers of all disciplines and levels of experience, to share their writing with others in the ACT region. Members of the Canberra Branch of the Society of Women Writer members also joined the Fellowship of the Australian Writers after the demise of their society in 1987.

The FAW ACT newsletter was issued for the first time in August 1988, later to be titled FAWord (1992). The newsletter was published monthly and provided information on lectures, literary competitions, publication outlets, readings and seminars, as well as other topics of interest. 

The first of a series of anthologies published by FAW ACT was Australia Writes: an anthology (1953), followed by Australian Signpost: an anthology (1956), Span: an adventure in Asian and Australian writing (1958) and Australian Voices: poetry and prose of the 1970s (1975) originating as contributions to Australia ’75 (Anthology of Short forms of writing).

On 10 June 1998, a notice was issued to all FAW ACT members and associated bodies announcing that FAW ACT would cease operation as an incorporated body. Members voted to approach the ACT Writers Centre to become a sub-group. Now a literary group of the ACT Writers Centre, FAW ACT continues to meet on a monthly basis at the National Library of Australia.

The collection is presented largely as received from FAW ACT. It contains correspondence, financial records, reports, manuscripts, reviews of anthologies, membership details, circulars and other papers emanating from the activities of the FAW ACT and the production of the anthologies. 

Box List
Box NumberDescriptionQuantityDate Range
1Correspondence8 folders1950-1967
2Correspondence10 folders1948-1975
2Membership records1 folder1950-1970
3Financial records1 folder1961-1971
3Financial records1 folder1967-1970
3Financial records1 file1974-1983
3Financial records1 folder1987-1989
3Financial records1 folder1989-1990
3Financial records1 folder1990-1991
3Financial records1 folder1991-1992
Financial records1 folder1992-1993
3Financial records1 folder1993-1996
4Records associated with the publication Australia Writes including reviews, plans, correspondence, contributors biographical notes; contributions; 5 folders1952-1956
4Membership correspondence1 folder1964-1989
4Australia Writes correspondence with contributors and biographical notes3 folders1952-1954

Australia Writes manuscripts of various works by a variety of authors. Also included are published works by some authors that appeared in The Bulletin and biographical details. Authors listed as follows:

  • Dal Stivens, Neilma Sidney (Folder 1)
  • H. Drake-Brockman, Brian Elliot, Dr W. E. H. Stanner, Maurice Tindall, Ruth Allmal (Folder 2)
  • Alan M?,  Kylie Tennant, John K. Ewers, Roderick M. Daw, Alan Marshall, (Folder 3)
  • A F Prior, R. S. Portius, P. J. Cunningham, Leon Gellert, David Campbell, J. R. Rowland, Llywelyn Lucas, Geoff Bingham, Joan Hayes, (Folder 4)
  • Brain James, John Rowland, P. A. Tillyard, Ray Harris, Ray Matthew, Hugh McCrae, R. D. Murphy, David Martin, Ethel Anderson, T. Englis Moore,  Douglas Stewart, Roland Robinson, Llywelyn Lucas, Rosemary Dobson (Folder 5)
5 folders1951-1952

Manuscript of Australia Writes: An Anthology by various contributors in seven volumes.

  • Poetry I: The Quality of Always
  • Poetry II: Desert, Flowers, Stones and Trees, and 
  • Poetry III: The Hand Upon the Body
  • Poetry IV: Trice Up - Lay Out - Loose Away
  • Poetry V: Blane Street 
  • Poetry VI: Bayonet in Glass
  • Poetry VII: In Eight Directions
1 foldercirca 1952-1953
5Papers on Australia Writes and SPAN including correspondence, contributions and selections 1 folder1953-1958
5Australia Writes working papers including correspondence, layout drafts, contributor lists, 1 folder1954-1956
5Span : an adventure in Asian and Australian writing (SPAN ) correspondence1 folder1952-1957
6Working papers on Australia Signpost including correspondence, biographical notes, payments to contributors and layout drafts1 folder1955-1956
6Asia-Australian Writing including correspondence from contributors, manuscripts, presentation on Australian poetry given at Pakistan-Australia Association conference by Loma Rudduck1 folder1956-1958
6Correspondence on anthologies: Australia  Writes, Australian Signpost, Asia-Australia book, SPAN 1 folder1953-1958
6Contributions to Asia-Australia book including comments and ratings including some articles2 folders1953-1957
6Contributions to Asia-Australia book - Australian Short Stories -  including comments and ratings including some articles1 folder1950-1957
6Australia '75  - correspondence including contributor biographical notes2 folders1974
6Australia '75 - manuscripts by Dennis Ferguson1 folder1974
7Australia '75 - correspondence with contributors2 folders1974-1975
7Notebooks - Australia '75 contributor contact details and titles of contributions2 notebooks1974
7Australian Voices (formerly Australia '75) - drafts1 folder1974
7Short Stories Talk Finalists - newspaper clippings and articles1 file1979-1980

The Society of Women Writers writing workshops and presentation papers including:

  • Childrens Book Council talks 
  • Short story workshop notes
  • Adjudicators' comments to Canberra Society of Women Writers competitions
  • Talk presented by Rosemary Dobson at the Society of Womens writers first Biennial conference, 
1 folder1976 -1978; 1980
7Poetry and short story guide 1986 : Up-to-date listing of outlets for established and aspiring writers, ACT Arts Council of Australia, 1986.  - annotated 03/03/19871 book1986-1987
7Thornton, Jean & Australian Writers' Professional Service 1990,Writers' & photographers' marketing guide : Australia, New Zealand, England, 1990 ed, Australian Writers' Professional Service, Melbourne1 book1990


  1. Left to right:  Marian Eldridge - Author and member of FAW; Margaret Fead - Past executive and member of FAW (07/11/1999)
  2. Good King Wencelas looked out...100 word contest December 1995 General Meeting. Judges left to right: Lauris Suiter, Anne Edgeworth, Annette O'Grady, Phillipa Burgess, Barbara Edwards
  3. Good King Wencelas looked out...100 word contest December 1995 General meeting. Left to right: Margaret Fead and an unidentified woman
  4. Good King Wencelas looked out...100 word contest December 1995 General Meeting. Left to Right: Barbara Edwards and an unidentified woman speaking
  5. Good King Wencelas looked out...100 word contest December 1995 General Meeting. Judges in a huddle from left to right: Barbara Edwards, Phillipa Burgess, Annette Grady, Anne Edgeworth, Lauris Suiter
  6. Pauline Brooks and Geoff Moore at the Poetry Picnic, Sunday 30/04/1995, Sculpture Garden, National Gallery of Australia
  7. Left to right: Geoff Moore - Committee member; Anne Edgeworth - Canberra Stereo Public Radio (CSPR) and Member of FAW (07/11/1994). Photographer: Juno Gemes
  8. Left to right: Anne Edgeworth - Canberra Stereo Public Radio (CSPR) and Member of FAW; Phil Mackenzie - Publisher Polonius Poets and member of FAW (0711/1994). Photographer: Juno Gemes
  9. Frank MacMahon - Poet and member of FAW (07/11/1994). Photographer: Juno Gemes
  10. Maureen Burdett - President of FAW (07/11/1994). Photographer: Juno Gemes
  11. Ron Miller form the University of Canberra at meeting held in the home of Sally Clarke (0711/1994)
  12. Hillary Trotter - Editor of FAW at meeting held in the home of Sally Clarke. (07/11/1994)
  13. Pauline Brooks - Secretary FAW at meeting held in the home of Sally Clarke. (07/11/1994)
  14. Left to right: Maureen Burdett - President of FAW (07/11/1994); Manik Datar - Committee member FAW. (07/11/1994)
  15. Frank MacMahon reading at Cafe Neruda, Wednesday 02/11/1994.
  16. Geoff  Moore  reading at the Poetry Picnic in the Sculpture Garden, National Gallery of Australia (23/10/1994)
  17. Poetry Picnic. Left to Right: June Foster, Juliet Feabes (WA), Burdett Family - Maureen, William, Joshua, John (23/10/1994)
  18. FAW Stand at the Hall Markets December 1992. Peta Huta and John Kelly (standing)
1 folder1992; 1994-1995; 1999
8FAW ACT Expenditure notebooks1 book10/05/1967-26/04/1974; 
8Australian Voices - 1 set of cards filed by Authors1 box1974
8Audio cassette tape titled 'Shadow of the Glen - Synge',  2XX. Side A only1 tape21/08/1988

Audio cassette tape. Case title 'Riders to the Sea - Synge'

  • Side A:  2XX Sound Print  'Riders to the Sea - Synge' - Complete
  • Side B: 2XX Sound Print
1 tape 14/08/1988
8Writing by Paul Haugh - Puck Fair, A vision, Irish Coffee Shop1 filecirca 1982
8Letters to Steve [?] (FAW) from Stephen Dearnley (William Collins, Australia Ltd., Sydney) regarding manuscripts Something More Durable by Sydney C. Robson and Hill of Grass by Ru Pullen. Manuscripts included1 folder16 September 1970 24 September 1970
8Letter to Rosemary Dobson (FAW)  from Anthony Bradley ( The Power Institute of Fine Arts, University of Sydney)in response to a letter regarding writing on art by Australians. Includes an article by Donald Brook and two off-prints by Terry Smith1 folder20 March 1974
8Australian Anthology contributions and correspondence. Including contributions declined.1 folder1972 -1975
8Notebook - FAW ACT publication contributor contact list1 folder1957
8Drafts and final of 'Australian writers and their addresses ; an alphabetical checklist prepared by the Fellowship of Australian Writers', No.1, 19631 folder1963
8External meetings papers and newsletters1 folder1970-1971; 1977; 1987; 1993
9Annual reports including FAW ACT Constitution1 folder1952-1960
9Annual reports1 folder1960-1964
9Annual reports1 folder 1964-1970
9Administration including FAW ACT constitution, meeting arrangements and members list1 folder1964-1966
9Meeting arrangements including room bookings and possible speakers1 folder1986-1994
9FAW ACT news items, workshops and seminars1 folder1985-1991
9Workshop papers. Topics include music, crime fiction,article writing, grammar limericks, short story writing, play writing and romance1 folder1988-1994
9Correspondence1 folder1992-1995
9Items for distribution to members and presentations1 file1965-1973

General Meeting and Committee Meeting minutes

13 files and 3 folders



Membership application forms, membership lists and correspondence

4 folders and 4 files



Membership letters regarding membership and changes of address

1 file1972–1992

Membership papers including survey forms and change of address papers

1 folder1994-1995
12Financial records including Auditor's Reports and financial statements1 folder1990-1995

Back to Basics short story writing

1 file1993

General papers collected by Vice President Sally Clarke 

1 file1994-1995

FAW ACT Federal Council papers

1 file1988-1990

Writers Centre papers, including correspondence and submissions including the Inquiry into the possible use of the $19 million casino premium, Sharing the vision: a preferred future for cultural development, Select committee on cultural activities

1 file1990-1993

ACT Writers Centre papers

1 file1990-1994

National Book Council papers

1 file1993-1994

Various papers, including correspondence, newspaper clippings, and ephemera

1 file1991-1994
12FAW ACT Literary Competition 1994 Entries Register1 booklet1971-1997
12ARTS Training ACT 1995/1996 Profile1 booklet1995-1996
13Correspondence9 files1974-1978; 1985-1995
13Members list and correspondence1 file1997
13FAW ACT Constitution1 file1974-1996
14Meeting minutes, including committees, annual general meetings and Federal Council papers; minutes book6 folders, 1 book1973 -1997
14General Meeting papers 1996
14Meeting attendance lists1 notebook19/04/1994-15/06/1998
14Constitutions, registrations of corporate association and annual general meeting papers1 folder1978-1993
14Logos, letterheads, forms1 folder including 4 x 31/4" floppy disks1995-1996
14Accountancy papers including receipts1 folder including 1 x 31/4 " floppy disk1994-1998
15Copyright 1 folder1993-1995
15Articles published and literary reviews2 folder1990-1998
15Literary competition correspondence1 folder1996
15Poetry competition correspondence1 folder1996
15FAW ACT correspondence2 folder1994-1995
15Correspondence2 folder1995-1996
16Writer's competition 1 folder1994
16Literary competition1 folder1994-1996
16Poetry competition1 folder1994-1995
16R.F. Brissenden Literary Competition1 folder1996
16FAW ACT insurance and corporate policies1 folder1989 - 1998
16FAW ACT agreement with ANU Press regarding Australian Voices1 file1974-1978
16 Australia '75 : Anthology of Short Writings, edited by Rosemary Dobson for FAW ACT1 file1974-1975
16Papers regarding Anne Edgeworth, Canberra Citizen of the Year1 file1994
16Grant applications1 file1974-1995
16Writers who are published (newspaper clippings)1 folder1971-1981
17Marked up proof of Australia '75 1 wrapped proofJuly 1974