Scarlet Stiletto Awards

Last days for women writers. Award closes on 31 August for short stories with a crime or mystery theme involving a female hero or anti-hero. Maximum length 5000 words. Go to Scarlet Stiletto 2017. Check it out. $8600 in prize money.

CJ Dennis Poetry and Short Story Award

Closes 1 September. Prizes 1st. 2nd and 3rd awarded at the CJ Dennis Poetry Festival on Saturday 21 October. Details:


Tamba Launch

Tamba Launch Photograph  < Please click link to see image.

From left: Goulburn Valley Writers Group president Robyn Black, Roger Furphy who launched the Tamba 60th edition, and Tamba editor Pat Patt.

Goulburn Valley Writers Group president Robyn Black called on the first editorial written in the Tamba anthology, during the launch of its 60th edition at Shepparton on Sunday 9 July.
Robyn said the first Tamba was issued in Autumn 1992 with Hugh Oakes as editor and a small editorial team, including the only founding member still involved with the GVWriters Group, Alan Mathews, who is still writing excellent prose and haunting
“Hugh’s editorial explained the name ‘Tamba’, an indigenous language word meaning ‘ibis’.
“The white ibis is a symbol for the Goulburn Valley.”
Hugh wrote: ‘We who have worked to set up this journal feel very much like a young bird about to take flight for the first time.
Will we soar – or crash’?
“He went on to say the real success of the fledgling literary journal would depend on those who wrote for Tamba.
“And succeed it has!
“Hugh’s editorial also said Tamba could not offer payment, only a complimentary copy to each writer whose work was accepted for print.
“He hoped the anthology would be able to offer poetry in the future.
“Well it did happen.” Robyn said.
Initially three issues a year were produced.
Robyn said Issue 8, launched in Winter 1994, coincided with the inaugural Country Festival of Writing; the first of ten hugely successful literary weekends run by the
“My introduction to the Writers Group and Tamba was for issue 10, which saw the original cover artwork by Peter Shultz now take on a new image, compliments of Mystique Graphics Rowville.
“Sadly, issue 17 in Summer 1998 was Hugh’s last as editor because he was tragically killed in a road accident whilst riding his bike.
“Issue 18, published in the Autumn saw Alan Mathews take over the editorial mantle and dedicate the magazine to Hugh.
“Our winter spring 1998 issue introduced Alan as prose editor and Kylie Oakes, the wonderfully talented daughter of Hugh and Lois, as poetry editor.
In Issue 26, the spring/summer of 2000, Kylie signed off as co-editor and went off to university.
“In her editorial, she noted the lofty ideal of paying contributors fell by the wayside and Tamba was running at a monetary loss.
“The magazine, however, flourished, with the support of a dedicated committee and members of the Writers Group who had a strong belief in the importance of providing regional and country writers with the opportunity to be published.
“Tamba gained a national reputation as a quality literary journal publishing excellent writing.
“Like the allegorical starving poet creating in quiet desperation in a freezing garret, we forged on, ignoring the requirement for sustenance (money!) and just kept producing quality literature,” Robyn said.
Robyn said current editor Pat Patt took over for Issue 43 in 2008.
“Pat has drawn Tamba forward in leaps and bounds with her fresh vision and boundless energy.
“It is a big job at the best of times, but this special monster issue was an enormous task for Pat and her editorial committee, all done in their own time and for free.”
Robyn quoted Professor Kevin Brophy: “Writing is the way to beat midlife crisis and those who write have something rich and fulfilling to fall back on when things go sideways.”
Roger Furphy officially launched Tamba 60.