Since 1956, Westerly has been publishing lively fiction and poetry as well as intelligent articles.
The magazine has always sought to provide a Western Australian-based voice, although its contributors and subject matter have never been geographically exclusive. It covers literature and culture throughout the world, but maintains a special emphasis on Australia, particularly Western Australia, and the Asian region.
Westerly has a strong international reputation, and is listed in some of the world’s major cultural indexes. It has been instrumental in the careers of many of the regions most prominent and internationally renowned writers. These include major Western Australian writers such as Randolph Stow, Dorothy Hewett, T.A.G. Hungerford and Elizabeth Jolley; highly-awarded contemporary writers, including Tim Winton, Kim Scott, and Sally Morgan; and important local poets like John Kinsella, Tracy Ryan, John Mateer, and Lucy Dougan.
It is published at the Westerly Centre (formerly the Centre for Studies in Australian Literature) at the University of Western Australia, with assistance from the Western Australian State Government by an investment in the project through the Department of Culture and the Arts, and the Australian Federal Government through the Australia Council for the Arts. Our Writers’ Development Program is supported by Copyright Agency Ltd.’s Cultural Fund.
The print magazine is published twice a year in July and November, while the website publishes content throughout the year, including two Online Special Issues available for free digital download.
Submissions for the 2020-21 Writers’ Development Program and Mid-Career Fellowship are now open! You can find information on these initiatives here.
Catherine completed her PhD in creative writing at Monash University in 2013. Her work has been published in journals here and overseas. She has been a visiting research scholar to the University of Warwick (UK), convened multiple conferences and serves as a board member to Writing WA. Creatively, her work has been twice awarded the Elyne Mitchell Rural Women Writers award. Her first novel, The Salt Madonna, was as a manuscript awarded a Varuna fellowship in 2014, and was published by Picador in February 2020.
Josephine joins the Westerly team from Edith Cowan University, where she is an Adjunct Lecturer in creative writing. Since completing her PhD in writing in 2011, Josephine has continued to present and publish material drawn from her award-winning thesis, with work published across a variety of print and online journals, including Westerly, Axon, Outskirts and Southerly. She is a member of the editorial board of Margaret River Press, and reviews regularly for Australian Book Review. She is interested in creative responses to chronic pain, and passionate about Australian writing, especially here, in Western Australia.
One of two commissioning editors for Westerly, Lucy Dougan’s books include Memory Shell (5 Islands Press), White Clay (Giramondo), Meanderthals (Web del Sol) and The Guardians (Giramondo), and her prizes the Mary Gilmore Award, the Alec Bolton Award and short-listings for the 2015 Queensland Premier’s Prize for Poetry and the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Prize for Poetry. Since the early 1990s she has been published in a range of journals both here and overseas, and has had work represented in many anthologies. She has worked in arts administration, as a tertiary teacher of creative writing and literature, and as poetry editor of HEAT magazine and Axon: Creative Explorations. She has had poems commissioned for the Southern Forest Sculpture Walk at Northcliffe and the Busselton Jetty. She currently works for Westerly Magazine. Her PhD, concerning representation of Naples, was awarded in 2010. Her latest book, The Guardians, won the WA Premier’s Book Award for 2015/2016.
The second half of our dynamic commissioning duo, Cassandra Atherton is an award-winning poet and Associate Professor at Deakin University. She was a Harvard Visiting Scholar in poetry in 2016, and has been the successful recipient of fifteen national and international grants and awards, most recently a VicArts grant and an Australia Council Grant to work on a book of prose poetry on the atomic bomb. Cassandra has published twelve books including seven poetry collections, most recently Pikadon (2018), and is writing a critical book on prose poetry for Princeton University Press. She has been invited to judge several awards and prizes, including the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards: Prize for Poetry, the Lord Mayor’s Prize for Poetry and the joanne burns microliterature award.
Chris joined the Westerly team in 2017. He used to work as a software engineer and is now a PhD candidate at UWA, where he’s working with information security practices to develop a creative project in electronic literature.
Susan Midalia grew up in the wheatbelt, and after graduating from the universities of Western Australia and Cambridge, worked as an academic and teacher for several decades. She has a PhD in contemporary Australian women’s fiction and has published on the subject in national and international literary journals. She quit her job in 2006 in order to have time to write, and since then has published three collections of short stories: A History of the Beanbag (shortlisted for the Western Australian Premiers Book Awards); An Unknown Sky (shortlisted for the Steele Rudd Award); and Feet to the Stars (shortlisted for the Western Australian Book Awards). Her debut novel The Art of Persuasion was published in 2018, and her second novel, Everyday Madness, will be released early in 2021.
Susan is an experienced editor, reviewer, workshop facilitator and mentor to emerging writers. She has been a judge in numerous literary prizes, including the T.A.G. Hungerford Award, the WA Premiers Book Awards and the Margaret River Press Short Story Competition. She is currently enjoying the challenge of writing micro-fiction, having published pieces in Westerly and the anthologies Crush, Landmarks and Once. Susan is married to Dan Midalia (otherwise known as her unofficial patron) and has two adult sons of whom she is boastfully proud. She believes in the capacity of fiction to encourage reflection of self, other and society, and through the power of language and story, to make some kind of sense of our increasingly blighted world.
Paul Munden is a poet published both in the UK and Australia. He has published five poetry collections, including Analogue/Digital: New & Selected Poems (Smith|Doorstop, 2015) and Chromatic (UWA Publishing, 2017), and five prose poetry chapbooks. He is editor (or co-editor) of various journals and anthologies, including Metamorphic: 21st century poets respond to Ovid (RWP, 2017) and Giant Steps (RWP, 2019). For the British Council he has covered a number of scientific and humanitarian themes as conference poet and edited the anthology, Feeling the Pressure: Poetry and science of climate change (British Council, 2008).
He was director of the UK’s National Association of Writers in Education, 1994-2018, and is now a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of Leeds. He is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Canberra, Australia, where he established the ‘Poetry on the Move’ festival.
Elfie completed a PhD in Political Science and International Relations at the University of Western Australia in 2015. She was awarded first class Honours in Asian Studies and Political Science at UWA in 2005 and a Bachelor of Arts at UWA in 2004. She is currently working at the Centre for Human Rights Education at Curtin University as an Indigenous Post-Doctoral Research Fellow.
Westerly is also supported by a great team of interns. If you are interested in taking up a short-term position as an intern, please contact us.