How do you confront trauma in non-fiction writing?

It’s been quite a while since I last posted here, but full-time work at a busy consultancy has kept me otherwise engaged. However, this weekend I presented to a wonderful crowd at the Sunshine Coast International Readers and Writers Festival at beautiful – and unseasonably warm – Coolum, just an hour or so’s drive from Brisbane. I shared the stage with Leanne Dodd from Central Queensland University. While Leanne spoke of confronting trauma in fiction writing, I went back to my journalistic and research roots to present this information, which I’m happy to share (it’s a PDF, which you can download from here):

SCIRWF2017-TM-Trauma

If you are covering traumatic incidents, either at the time as a reporter, feature writer or photographer, or later as a narrative/long form/non-fiction/investigative writer or photographer – or you edit a lot of this kind of work – please take a look at this short presentation. And, if you want to expand your learning further, please visit the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma or its Asia-Pacific arm for lots of fabulously relevant information and insights. If you’re super-keen on this topic, check out my MA thesis on The Impact of News Reporting on Victims and Survivors of Traumatic Incidents.

And take extra good care of yourselves if you are doing this sort of work. Knowledge can only help, but networking is vital to staying healthy.

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