On writing, PNG literature and the voice of the diaspora
I recently caught up with Rashmii Bell over lunch in Brisbane, and asked about her background and experiences as an author. Listen to the podcast, read the transcript, or for highlights of what we discussed, read on.
I began by asking Rashmii to tell me about her background, and what she is currently involved in.
Rashmii hails from Sio, Morobe Province in PNG, having being born and lived in Lae, as well as Port Moresby and (presently) Brisbane. She was educated in Australia, and has lived between there and PNG since 1990. She studied at Griffith University, obtaining a degree in psychology and criminology. She has more than ten years of experience working in case management within adult and youth corrections services.
I’m a little past nine years while I’ve been at home. I’ve just been raising children. But, I’ve always enjoyed reading. I read everything, read every day. And writing, I have been writing for myself, but I only just started having my work published in the past three years…
I went on to ask what Rashmii considered to be the most significant milestones in her journey as an author. Her first, and possibly most significant milestone, was seeing her work published on the PNG Attitude blog, edited by Keith Jackson. More recently, her role as editor of My Walk to Equality has provided new opportunities:
…appearing at the writers’ festivals, the Sunshine Coast festival this year, and then Brisbane Writers’ Festival, both in 2016 and 2017, which has really, I think, for the majority of the emerging contemporary PNG writers, that’s a huge thing for us to know that Papua New Guinean literature is being mentioned at these international events.
In a similar vein, I asked Rashmii what she thought were …read more