Meet Maureen Jipyiliya Nampijimpa O’Keefe, our 2017-18 Focus Writer.
Maureen is an artist, writer, artefact maker, storyteller, storykeeper, translator and interpreter. Her family comes from the Devil’s Marbles area also known as Karlu Karlu, and she is a Kaytetye-Warlpiri woman born and raised in Ali-Curing, south-east of Tennant Creek.
Maureen’s short stories and poems appear in This Country Anytime Anywhere (IAD Press 2010), Desert Writing (UWA Publishing 2016), ABC Online and in the Red Room’s The Disappearing App. In 2014 she was the recipient of the Magabala Books Australian Indigenous Creators’ Scholarship and she has performed at Writers’ Festivals across the country.
She is currently working on a collection of short stories from the areas around Karlu Karlu and Wauchope where her family are from.
This story is my family story. It is not only my story, but belongs to my family. These stories are the traditional knowledge of our people. I am the only storyteller now in my family. My mother encouraged me to become a writer, and to pass down these stories. These stories were passed down to me by my mother and the elders. We always told these stories around the campfire. We want these stories to be passed down to the younger generation. We want these stories to survive.
Focus Writers is a program in development, responding to the needs of writers in our region. NT Writers’ Centre currently assists Focus Writers through:
- Assisted access to workshops
- Grants, opportunities and submissions support
- Link up with writing mentors
- Link up with industry and writing resources
For more information about getting involved in this program, please drop in to our Alice Springs Centre, 67 Bath St Monday-Wednesday 10-4pm.
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writing and drawings from the Centre
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