InSite: Portrayals of a Pandemic

Thursday 25 June 7pm
Thursday 30 July 7pm
Thursday 27 August 7pm

Reflect on your experiences of the pandemic through three online writing workshops and a letter writing exchange.

There are so many thoughts to be had when it comes to the current pandemic we’re living through. It’s human nature to be scared, upset, anxious or perhaps even happy to be in isolation from other people.

In this workshop series brought to you in a partnership between Fabrik and Writers SA, we’ll explore ways to reflect on our experiences of the pandemic and transfer them to the page in the form of a letter that participants will swap, like having a pandemic pen pal. This person may be in your community, they may be on the other side of the country, you won’t know. But wherever they are, they’re going through what you’re going through.

The project will consist of three skills development sessions with tutors from Writers SA’s professional networks. These will be held online via Zoom on a Thursday evening once a month and will explore themes of Past (how you felt as the pandemic gained momentum), Present (how you’re coping with the current level of isolation or social distancing, either emotionally or physically), and Future (what you’ll be looking forward to when some semblance of normalcy is reached).

Each person will receive a welcome pack with stationery to get started and each letter will be photographed by Fabrik to be included in an archive that could some day be turned into a publication or a digital installation detailing life in isolation for future generations.

Workshop and speaker details:


Past (Thursday 25 June) – As well as being a cheerleader for art, creativity and positive expression, Melanie Knight is also the founder of Melbourne’s Dead Letter Club. Witnessing first hand the transformative power of creativity and expression, Mel is passionate about inspiring and nurturing an individual’s ability to trust themselves and explore their own style.

Present (Thursday 30 July) – Author of Dear World: Contemporary Uses of the Diary, Kylie Cardell is a lecturer of English and Creative Writing at Flinders University. Her primary research interest is in practices of documenting the everyday. In her work, she focuses on marginal and ordinary forms of life writing, such as diaries, letters, and comics, as well as social media and digital.

Future (Thursday 27 August) – University of Adelaide teacher and author of Viva The Real, Jill Jones is also a poet who is interested in ‘relationships between states and locales, shifting borders, the openings in closures, pleasures of exploration, and the great themes, like the weather.’ Her work is attentive to the ways writing can celebrate change and reinvention amid uncertainty.

*Letters will be sent in the first instance via a central Adelaide Hills location and quarantined appropriately before being photographed and sent on to participants. Participants will be able to opt out of having their letter photographed for future use.

Registrations for this event have now closed.

Insite Portrayals of a Pandemic text