Heyman Mentorship Award

Kathryn Heyman, founder of the Australian Writers Mentoring Program, has teamed up with Catherine Milne of HarperCollins to offer the 2020 Kathryn Heyman Mentorship Award for a writer from a background of social and economic disadvantage. The successful writer will be mentored by Kathryn Heyman, under the auspices of the Australian Writers Mentoring Program, for six months. At the conclusion of the mentoring program, the writer will receive a full read and editorial report from HarperCollins.

Applications via email to should include:

  • A one page outline of the writer’s background and also writing experience
  • A five thousand word excerpt of your work-in-progress.


  • This award is for a writer of fiction or non-fiction. However, the writer should be working on a full-length work of prose which engages with issues of class and economic disadvantage
  • Applicants must apply via email to with a five-thousand-word sample of work-in-progress, which must be the work applicant wishes to pursue under the mentorship
  • Applicants must attach a one-page outline detailing their background. Social and economic disadvantage relates to opportunities that were available to you growing up.
  • Applicants must also attach a one page synopsis of work-in-progress.
  • Applications close on September 30th 2020 and the successful applicant will be notified by October 20th 2020.
  • Mentorship meetings will take place in Sydney or via Skype.
  • Successful applicant will have five one-hour meetings, over a six month period, submitting up to ten thousand words of work-in-progress before each meeting.
  • At the conclusion of the mentorship, the writer will have up to one year to complete the manuscript before submitting to HarperCollins, who will then provide a full read and editorial report.
  • HarperCollins makes no commitment to publishing the work resulting from the mentorship but will have the right of first offer.

“Kathryn is an inspirational and charismatic teacher. With her trademark energy and humour, she encouraged me to ask the hard questions.”
– Jane Rusbridge, author of The Devils Music, Longlisted for Impac Award

“Kathryn is a highly skilled, brilliant and dynamic mentor. The author of 6 wonderful novels, she was able to communicate from a deep understanding of the writing process and guided me as to what was important, what worked, what didn’t.
This was mentoring at its best, which I will always treasure.”

– Sienna Brown, whose book, Master Of My Fate, published by Vintage Australia will be available from May 2019.