Ask Tania: Writing a Literary CV

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Dear Tania, 
I am entering a writing mentorship program that requires a literary CV. A google search is giving me various results and I was interested in your take on it.

Hi Stacey,

What an exciting undertaking! I wish you every success with it.

As with anything to do with this publishing industry, the first thing to do when applying for grants or mentorships is get really clear on the guidelines. It absolutely seems you're doing this, by researching exactly what they may require.

If they don't outline it for you, I do recommend contacting them to ask. Most large organisastions and small ones, too, encourage communication from applicants. Entering that dialogue is actually a good thing for your application, and shows you're serious about applying. It also shows you're personable and honest, and will more readily sink your name into the mind of the people involved.

If you feel you can't do this, or that option doesn't exist, asking around is a great idea.

A literary CV is really a breakdown of your working history in relation to writing. This could be published works but could also include your achievements, educational undertakings, residencies, workshops and conferences, media, awards, affiliations and memberships, and more.

If you're in doubt about what to include, I would cover most obvious bases (ensuring they are super relevant), but keep everything succinct.

As an example, my Literary CV simply lists the following, in reverse chronological order:

  • name and contact details
  • education 
  • professional memberships and affiliations 
  • conferences, festivals and residencies
  • workshops, presentations and speaking engagements
  • media appearances 
  • prizes and awards
  • freelance writing--in print and online
  • publications

I provide online links to those that are too numerous to list, but provide a few of the major ones. Under affiliations, I would list such achievements as Kids' Book Review and the 52-Week Illustration Challenge.

I hope this helps you put together an impressive Literary CV. Good luck!


See all the questions so far ...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Tania!
This is great!

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