Navigating Interactive Writing



WHEN: 6.30pm – 1 May 2017

COST: $10 AWG Members / $15 Non-members


Writing for interactivity can present many challenges to the newcomer, and involves shedding a lot of what we’ve always been taught about storytelling. Are beginning, middle, and end really essential? Do we need to move in straight lines anymore? Is conflict really essential? Join our panel of games and interactive writers as they lead you through the basics of changing your mindset to level up your writing by including interactivity and reader agency into your stories! Moderated by Teresa Crea (SA) with Christy Dena (QLD), Leena van Deventer (VIC), Anna Irwin-Schutze (VIC), Krister Collin (NSW) and Nicole Stark (QLD).

Doors open 6.30pm for a 7pm start. Bar will be open.

Teresa Crea is a writer, director and creative producer across a variety of media – including theatre, media (television and radio), hybrid and cross platform. She has written, devised and directed over thirty productions across these media and her work has been presented nationally and internationally – including Singapore, UK and South America. Her performance company received the Sidney Myer Award for its ‘Seminal Contribution to the Australian Arts’. Teresa’s experience also includes two years as a creative facilitator and lecturer in Visual Story for the US based Carnegie Mellon Entertainment Technology Centre. Her role was to work with cross domain teams of writers, programmers, designers, film makers and animators to rapidly prototype and develop narratives for virtual and cross platform production. She holds a PHD in immersive narrative – investigating narrative sense- making and information processing in simulated and immersive environments.

Leena van Deventer is an award-winning game developer, writer, and educator from Melbourne. She has taught interactive storytelling at Swinburne and RMIT Universities and published her first book last year, Game Changers: From Minecraft to misogyny, the fight for the future of videogames with Dr Dan Golding for Affirm Press. Leena has worked on games and apps such as Twists & Turns for the Melbourne Writers Festival, and as a senior copywriter on Run That Town for the Australian Bureau of Statistics, which went on to win a Gold Lion award at Cannes.

Christy Dena is a writer-designer-director who has worked on award-winning pervasive games, film, digital and theatre projects. Her original projects have won the Interactive Media category at the Australian Writers’ Guild AWGIE Awards; won and been shortlisted for the Digital Narrative category at the WA Premier’s Book Awards; and many others. Christy has been commissioned to create a game installation for Experimenta’s 5th International Biennial of Media Art: Recharge. She was granted Australia’s first Digital Writing Residency at The Cube for her project Robot University, with funding from the Australia Council for the Arts and QUT. She was the “Digital Writing Ambassador” for the Emerging Writers Festival. Previously she worked extensively with the Australia Council for the Arts on their “Story of the Future” initiative, including co-writing The Writer’s Guide to Making a Digital Living for the Australian Literature Board. She co-founded with Lance Weiler an international residential lab for storytellers working in tech called “Forward Slash Story“. Her clients include Nokia, Cisco/No Mimes Media, ABC, Wieden+Kennedy, Bangarra Dance Theatre, Noah Falstein, Ken Eklund & Agency of Coney, and more.

Narrative designer Anna Irwin-Schutze has been in and around the games industry for over 6 years. As co-director of Sound Librarian, she has a unique perspective in understanding interactive media from both a narrative and audio perspective. Anna is passionate about creating great stories that support gameplay and exploring new ways to engage players through the interactive experience. Currently working on a mix of projects, Anna has an active interest in writing for VR, MR and AR and the unique challenges of storytelling in each of these formats. Anna is a member of the AWG – Games & Interactive Advisory Committee (GIAC) and is passionate about raising the profile of narrative designers and game writers in Australia and worldwide.

Krister Collin is a firm believer that enjoyment, teaching, play and humour are all intertwined. He has been making games for several years on contract and worked as a designer of educational software, now teaching Game Design at AIE Sydney. In his spare time, he runs Beer and Pixels, the monthly game developer meetup for IGDA Sydney, as well as working on side-projects, sharpening his skills and funny third thing.

Nicole Stark is the proud owner of the inaugural ANZ Women in Games Award for Creative Inspiration. She’s held senior positions on a variety of shipped game titles with project sizes ranging from triple A console to indie mobile. In 2012 she moved to Noosa with her husband and four daughters and formed Disparity Games. Their most recent game Ninja Pizza Girl was nominated for an AWGIE award in 2016.