The “historic lack of representation” of diverse writing in Wales is being addressed by a new initiative.
Representing Wales: Developing Writers of Colour, a talent development programme launched by Literature Wales, aims to improve representation within the sector and establish a pipeline of diverse Welsh talent reputed across the UK and beyond.
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The programme, which sets out to address existing barriers within the sector, has been designed in consultation with communities, writers and consultants from Literature Wales’ networks. It includes financial assistance and mentoring, and will be “demystifying” the writing profession by providing networking opportunities and masterclasses with established writers and commissioners.
The 12-month pilot programme follows a major reform of the Welsh Curriculum following a landmark report on racial inequality in the Welsh education system that recommended ways to improve teaching of Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities' experiences.
Twelve writers have been selected by a panel of industry representatives to develop their work.
Panel Chair Sandeep Parmar commented: “Myself and fellow panellists were overcome by the vision of these writers – the ways they point us forward to another fuller canon."
"The complexities of their work, of their handling of Welsh language, culture, landscape, heritage, and all of the diversity of Wales is hugely inspiring."