Who’s who

Current members of the OutStanding Committee 

sophierobinsonSophie Robinson (guest judge 2017) is studying Gender Studies and History at the University of New South Wales, currently completing her PhD thesis which explores the history of lesbian activism in Australia from 1969 through to 2000. Sophie is also Vice President of Sydney’s Pride History Group that works to collect and preserve Sydney’s LGBTIQ histories. She has written numerous articles for Lesbians on the Loose Magazine about Sydney’s lesbian histories, and published academic articles on Australian lesbian communities, Women’s Liberation, Gay Liberation, and Australian masculinities.  Not only is the thought of reading short stories (as opposed to drafts of her thesis) appealing to Sophie, but as a feminist, historian and lesbian she is also really excited about further engaging with the stories, voices and creativity of the LGBTIQ community.

gail2Gail Hewison (judge, competition management, Facebook, publicity and liaison)  Gail is an enthusiastic member of our OutStanding Committee with a long term commitment to the queer lit community. Through her work at The Feminist Bookshop 1982 – 2011, she was awarded an OAM (Order of Australia Medal) for services to community and especially for services to emerging authors. She reads, she writes, she loves short stories!

robertRobert Tait (judge, competition management, venue and partner liaison)  Robert is the author of several novels, including Trashtown and Perfect Gay Marriage, chronicling gay life in contemporary Australia. As a long-term member of Sydney’s Queerlit community he strongly believes we should be more vigorous in writing and sharing our own distinctive Antipodean LGBTQI stories.


teresa2Teresa Savage (website, Facebook, administration and financial management)  Teresa is a long term feminist and LGBTQI activist.  She is an avid reader, keen member of a book club and has a Masters in Writing.  She  has had many pieces published, and is particularly interested in issues of ageing and the LGBTQI community. She is the founding director of 55upitty, an online celebration of the older LGBTQI woman.

Jon Jon (our mascot)  Jon Jon is a rescued greyhound who has a particular interest in LGBTIQ literature.  If you are interested in sharing your life with an ex-racing greyhound, and you live in New South Wales, visit Greyhound Rescue 

Jon Jon the rescue greyhound
Jon Jon the rescue greyhound

Who’s helped us in the past?

Amelia Lush (guest judge 2016)  Amelia Lush is the Manager of Better Read than Dead in Newtown. She has worked in independent book stores in Sydney for over 8 years and has a great love of Australian authors and children’s literature. She had been a judge for the ABIA Awards, Indie Awards, the CBCA Awards.  In 2016 she won the Australian Bookseller’s Association Young Bookseller of the Year Award, and in 2012 she won the ABA Baker & Taylor Elizabeth Riley Fellowship for Children’s Bookselling

Ricardo Felipe (administration 2014-2016)  Ricardo is a book designer for cultural organisations, artists and designers. He is also the publisher of a new queer imprint called Omo Books, publishing the work of LGBTIQ thinkers, writers and image-makers.

Rowan Savage (judge in 2013 and 2014)  Rowan has been an avid reader all his life.  He has taught writing and communications to undergraduates, but now uses his writing skills in the public service.  Rowan has had numerous essays, articles and papers published.

Laurin McKinnon
The Short Story Competition was started originally by Laurin McKinnon and Gary Dunne of Blackwattle Press, the first gay publishing house in Australia. Laurin became our behind-the-scenes admin person and mentor, and has supported us in many ways until having to stand down due to ill health in recent years. His guidance and expertise were invaluable, and he will always be a part of OutStanding.