|Hey hey Jake
This email is a small change from the scheduled entertainment.
Your normal Writers’ HQ newsletter will arrive at 11.30 am, just in time for you to have a cup of tea and a biscuit and read it at your leisure (it’s a good ‘un, about taking off your trousers and finishing things).
Before we send that, we need to ask you something pretty important.
Ugh, this sucks.
As you know the pandemic has proper knackered arts orgs and artists all over the shop and that, unfortunately, includes us. For the last 18 months, we’ve been unable to run our live events safely, honestly? It’s left a huge hole in our beeswax. Add to the nightmare with the cowboy web developers and things at WHQ HQ are a little on the precarious side.
Recently the Arts Council decided we weren’t allowed to apply for the Culture Recovery Fund because we asked for both too much and too little (we don’t understand either)*. We have maxed out all available credit and aren’t eligible for any of the other covid support packages and eeesh it has left us in a very bum-clenched situation.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have run hundreds of free online workshops and courses for writers stuck in covid hell and worked our little butts off to make sure no one missed out on the community they needed during the weird-ass timeline we forked into in early 2020.
Last year, we awarded over 20 bursaries to systemically excluded writers, ran 312 webinars and workshops, and saw our writers wrack up over 200 publications and 50 long listings, shortlisting, and competition wins. One longlist had TEN Writers’ HQers on it, and one anthology featured SEVEN of you writerly maniacs.
But it’s not just about the publications. It’s about DOING THE WORK and hoo boy have you guys worked your arses off. We’ve seen you wrack up those words, complete first drafts, fifth drafts, synopses, queries, collections, scripts, poems, a billion pieces of flash fiction, non-fiction, articles, journals, MA applications, podcasts, spoken word performances, self-published manuscripts, NaNoWriMo drafts and, most important of all, you’ve posted an endless stream of support and feedback on our forum, celebrating wins and rejections alike.
We love Writers’ HQ and we know it’s an important place for so many of you and we are determined that we won’t be scuppered at the final twist of the pandemic shitfight.
Tl;dr Writers’ HQ is really in the shits right now and if you have the resources to help us continue supporting writers across the world, we would very much appreciate it.
We’re not a megacorp that can suck up the losses of the last 18 months. Writers’ HQ is a labor of love run by Sarah and Jo and Natalie (and Poppy and the rest of the amazing workshop team) from our living rooms and dining tables because we believe the writing of stories should be accessible to everyone regardless of ability, class, neurodiversity or wealth, not just the rarified types normally allowed by the publishing gatekeepers.
So. If you can, there are three ways you can help us right now: