Conference committee member Jeni Lewington is looking forward to hearing Dr Sandra Phillips (among others)

black&write! But have you heard these stories before?
(Proudly sponsored by the State Library of Queensland)

Dr Sandra Phillips knew from a young age she enjoyed working with words, but I suspect she never envisioned just how integral to her life this aptitude for reading and writing would become. Now, with a prolific career in editing, publishing, and public speaking behind her, and a change to fulltime academia ongoing, Sandra is well placed to discuss developments in writing and editing at and beyond black&write! State Library of Queensland’s unique Indigenous writing and editing mentoring program. I met Sandra through Dr Anita Heiss a few years ago and have been interested in her journey ever since. We are now Facebook friends! I’m really looking forward to hearing her speak (join me! 11 am, 14 September).

Sandra, along with Melissa Lucashenko, was an inaugural judge of black&write! Fellowship and continues a relationship with the project. black&write! recruits, trains and mentors Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander editors to develop Indigenous-authored manuscripts. black&write! is made up of the Indigenous Writing Fellowships and the Indigenous Editing Internships. Sandra discusses editing literature with Indigenous cultural content and related topics: the need for sensitised readers, the importance of recruiting and accrediting more Indigenous editors, and the dimensions of cultural competency demanded of Australian publishing in relation to Indigenous-authored manuscripts and Indigenous editing processes.

Sandra is an academic and researcher with QUT Creative Industries in its School of Communication lecturing in mainstream editing, publishing, professional communication and Indigenous Knowledges. Current elected Chair of the First Nations Australia Writers Network Inc. (FNAWN), Sandra trained as a book editor with Magabala Books and UQP, later becoming the first Aboriginal person to manage Aboriginal Studies Press. Sandra went on to complete, with her current Faculty, a PhD into Indigenous authoring and publishing, and readership of Indigenous-authored texts. Sandra’s principal First Nations Australia statuses are Wakka Wakka and Gooreng Gooreng.