Melinda is an experienced poetry workshop facilitator in a number of community, professional, and literary event settings, and can offer both in-person and online delivery (via Zoom).

Previous clients include the Queensland Writers’ Centre, Perth Poetry Festival, the ACT Writers Centre, Libraries ACT, Maitland Indie Literary Festival, The NSW Speech and Drama Teachers’ Association, the University of Wollongong, and Veterans’ organisation Soldier On.

She can tailor a workshop to suit your particular needs. Some of her areas of expertise are:

  • Poetry for beginners,
  • Intermediate and advanced poetry technique,
  • Poetry editing,
  • General creativity / inspiration exercises, and
  • Arts Grant Application writing


Melinda charges Australian Society of Authors Rates (available here) but is open to negotiation where the client is a community group with limited funds. Please get in touch via the Contact Form to discuss your needs.

 Sample Workshop Offerings

Below are some of the workshop offerings Melinda currently has ‘ready to go’. If you don’t see what you are looking for here, she is happy to tailor a workshop to the specific needs of your group or organisation.  Get in touch via the Contact Form for an obligation-free discussion and quote.

Poetry Taster (Poetry for beginners)

For the absolute beginner, or long-lapsed poet. A gentle (re)introduction to poetry, which aims to help participants recover from whatever turned them off poetry at school. Includes inspiring and fun examples of what poetry can be, now, today, plus some fun and achievable writing exercises.

The content of this workshop can be completely tailored to the needs of the group. This workshop is particularly suited to community groups and for offer via public libraries.

This workshop can be offered as a one-off (minimum 90 min), a half-day, a day, or as a series (in person or online). The series format includes more possibility for individual feedback.

Next Level Poetry (Intermediate and advanced poetry technique)

In this workshop you will read, think, question, experiment, get feedback, and – hopefully – grow as a poet. The program will be a mix of analysing published poems written in English by prominent Australian poets, and workshopping participants’ draft poems (not compulsory but recommended). We will also include tips on editing and publishing your poems. Suitable for poets, published or unpublished, who are ready and able to receive honest feedback on their work.

This workshop can be offered as a one-off (minimum 90 min), a half-day, a day, or as a series (in person or online).

See a recent online example here (for the ACT Writers Centre).

New Chains to Set You Free (Intermediate and advanced poetry technique)

In this workshop we will explore several methods of creatively disrupting the writing process, including dipping a toe into the constantly evolving world of constraint-based writing. You will come away with some very strange draft poems and some new strategies for refreshing your poetic voice. If poetry is language under pressure, there are plenty of ways to apply that pressure beyond metre and rhyme. Come explore them. An internet enabled mobile phone will also come in handy but is not essential.

This workshop can be offered as a one-off (minimum 90 min), a half-day, a day, or as a series (in person or online). The series format includes more possibility for individual feedback.

Editing Your Darlings (and other people's)

Melinda has been editing poetry all her writing life, and professionally for over five years. She specialises in manuscripts for early-career poets but has also edited a regular newspaper poetry page and edited multi-hundred poem anthologies.

Let Melinda share her expertise with you in a one-day workshop. Whether you are hoping to edit your own poems or are starting to think about compiling those of others, Melinda can offer some practical tips about how to go about the work, manage the egos involved (including your own), and get the best possible results onto the page. Includes real exercises on early draft poems and sequences of poems.

This workshop can be offered as a one-off (minimum 90 min), a half-day, a day, or as a series (in person or online). The series format includes more possibility for individual feedback.

If you would prefer to engage Melinda as an editor on a particular project, see her Editing Services page.

Unlocking Your Creativity

A workshop suitable for all levels, aimed at all kinds of creative writers. Has been run with both community groups and writers’ groups. A set of fun exercises to get you looking at your writing sideways and generate new ideas. Incorporates multi-sensory input and walking outside where possible.

This workshop is best offered as a one-off (minimum 90 min), a half-day, or a day (in person or online). Where the workshop is in person an outside group walk will be encouraged where participants are able to do so (and weather permitting). In the online version we rely more on music and visual media (art / photography / film) for our creative stimulus.

Grant Writing: Get that Grant

In addition to successfully gaining multiple arts grants for her own work, Melinda has been a peer assessor for the Australia Council Literature Board for the past 3 years. She has also assessed grants and judged writing prizes (across many literary genres) for ArtsACT, The Australia Institute, The Queensland Writers’ Centre, the Newcastle Writers’ Centre and the ACT Writers’ Centre.

Let Melinda share her expertise with you and give your next grant application a greater chance of success.

We will look in detail at the things that make grant applications such exercises in frustration. Learn how to:

  • Balance the budget
  • Properly account for your own ‘in-kind’ contributions and those of others
  • Set out an appropriately detailed timeline of activities
  • Select and address the correct grant criteria
  • Make sure your support material is compelling
  • Submit the right letters of support from the right supporters
  • Make the case for ‘why you, and why right now’

We will also discuss what happens once you are successful, in particular how to set your record-keeping systems up to capture the data needed for acquittal. (Remembering that if you ever want to apply to that grants body again, you will need to acquit the grant satisfactorily).

This workshop can be offered as a one-off (minimum 2 hrs), a half-day, a day, or as a series (in person or online). The series format includes more possibility for individual feedback on draft grant applications.

Project Based Mentoring

Melinda is also available for project-based Mentoring services. See her Editing Services page for more details


“Inspirational course. Melinda was warm, friendly & inclusive. Very well organised, too. I couldn’t fault anything! Thank you, Melinda!”

“I’m loving the sessions - the topics are fascinating and I’m loving the brilliant example poems.”

“The content of the materials and teachings was unique and guided me to the next level of my poetry craft as promised. The combination of instruction, analysing poems as a group and individual feedback from Melinda made the course incredibly valuable. Thank you”

“Melinda was a fabulous teacher - a good mix of inspiration and pragmatism. Getting personal feedback on a poem was invaluable.“

“Melinda's course did take me to the 'next level' in what can be done to achieve good poetry; she is a thoughtful and thorough presenter; included references to extend participants if we wish, and was positive in her suggestions and comments on the poem I sent her.”

 “I think the course was excellent value for money….Thanks again for four great sessions, the handouts and the intervening exchanges”

“We all now have more of an understanding of why certain phrases or techniques work, and you have given us excellent strategies and ideas. So you have awakened in me new enthusiasm for writing!”

“I’m getting more from this course than any poetry workshop I’ve ever attended - so I feel like I’m taking my expectations of future poetry workshops to 'the next level’ as well!”