NVQ issue 8 is publishing a day early

We were going to publish this issue tomorrow, but we’d rather go to the March 4 Justice demonstration in Canberra. So, the poems will start publishing about 3:45 this afternoon (Sunday 14 March).

As always, you’ll receive a notification for each poem and your in-box will fill up. We wish WordPress would allow us to turn this off …

(the March 4 Justice is a protest against the appalling behaviour of men and the masculinist culture that pervades Australian politics)

Issue 6 publishes today

Dear subscribers,

Issue 6 of Not Very Quiet will start publishing in about 3 hours. This means that you will receive 61 notifications in your inbox as each poem goes live. As always, you can briefly unsubscribe if you don’t want to receive all of these.

Many thanks for your support!

Stay safe …

Founding editors receive award

Whoo hooo!!!

Not Very Quiet’s founding editors, Moya Pacey and Sandra Renew, received an award last night from the Canberra Critics’ Circle:

For their influential work in exposing Canberra women’s poetry to view through their biannual online journal for women’s poetry, Not Very Quiet.

Provocation – Issue 6, March 2020

It will be 2020
We’re having an open theme …

Surprise us. What does 2020 mean to you? Knock yourselves out.

We’re open to time, the universe, your biome, any old atom, particle, tear, hiccup. Apocalypse, crazy hope, Pollyanna world view, astral day dreams …

We have changed our submission rules – 1 poem per submission

Starting with issue 6 we will accept one poem (rather than three) per submission. Send us your best work.

Key dates

1 December 2019 – 2 February 2020: submissions open on Submittable

3–21 February 2020: selection

22–24 February 2020: poets notified of selection results

15 March 2020: online publication

30 March 2020: launch at Smith’s Alternative, Canberra (readings by any poets whose poem is included in issue 6)


NVQ issue 5 will start publishing in about an hour

Hello NVQ subscribers,

NVQ is publishing issue 5 during the next two hours. This means you will receive 71 notifications – one for each poem.

PLEASE UNSUBSCRIBE if you do not want all of these notifications in your inbox.

Thank you for supporting Not Very Quiet: A twice yearly online journal for women’s poetry.

New provocation Issue 4 + launch photos

Next issue

Check out ‘Gender performance’ – the theme of Issue 4.

Key dates for the issue:

  • Submissions will be accepted via Submittable 1–31 January 2019
  • The issue will be published in mid-March 2019


Issue 3 of Not Very Quiet was launched @ Smith’s Alternative, Canberra, Monday 29 October 2018

A very big thank you to Guest Editor Lisa Brockwell for coming to launch the Issue in person and to all the contributors who read their poems on the night and also other poems from selected overseas contributors. It was a particular joy to hear so many women reference the work of Grace Cossington Smith and Fay Zwicky in their introductions – two Australian women artists whose work deserves to be widely known and cherished.

Thank you to everyone who came along as audience and helped create a vibrant space for women’s poetry. So much talent, humour and friendliness on display.

Guest Editor Lisa Brockwell.


Moya Pacey, co-founding editor.


Issue 3 will go live tomorrow – you might want to unsubscribe

Hello NVQ subscribers,

While we totally appreciate you subscribing to NVQ, you might want to unsubscribe for the next few days.

We are going to publish Issue 3 tomorrow morning, Sunday 16 September (eastern standard Australian time). Yay!

But this means that your email will be flooded with notifications – one for each of the 60+ poems in Issue 3. 

Please unsubscribe to avoid this.

We hope you enjoy Issue 3. Our apologies for the inconvenience.

NVQ editors


NVQ is going to the South Coast

The editors of Not Very Quiet, Sandra Renew, Moya Pacey and Tikka Wilson, are heading to Huskisson to offer a Poetry Hub at the SeeChange Jervis Bay Arts Festival.

The Poetry Hub will run for two days: Saturday 9 June and Sunday 10 June, 10am to 4pm in the Public School Library.

NVQ editors at the launch of  Issue 3. Left to right: Tikka Wilson, the Poodle, Sandra Renew, Anita Patel and Moya Pacey.


The Poetry Hub at the Festival

The Poetry Hub will feature Canberra poets Melinda Smith, Laurie McDonald, Moya Pacey and Sandra Renew. They will offer readings, workshops, open mics and discussions with participants. Tikka Wilson will offer a workshop called ‘Submission  Blues’ – a peek behind the scenes of a publisher.

Two worn-out sandals on a wooden pier with green water.

Join us!

For more information: SeeChange festival 2018

Issue 3 – theme and provocation

Our guest editor, Lisa Brockwell, has selected an image and text provocation to stimulate your writing.

We will accept submissions via Submittable 1–31 July 2018.

See Submissions for more information.

Image credit: Grace Cossington Smith Interior with wardrobe mirror 1955. Oil on canvas on paperboard 91.4 x 73.7 cm board; 103 x 85 x 5.6 cm frame. Art Gallery of New South Wales. Purchased 1967 © Estate of Grace Cossington Smith. Photo: AGNSW.

No More Silent Waiting

A Review of Autonomy edited by Kathy D’Arcy
(New Binary Press 2018)

Book cover: Autonomy edited by Kathy D'ArcyAutonomy edited by Kathy D’Arcy forces us to sit up and listen to a chorus of voices which have been silenced for too long. The pieces in this collection are brutal, tender, sorrowful, harrowing, beautiful and sometimes bizarrely humorous. Most importantly, they give those of us (fortunate enough to determine what happens with our bodies), a range of  perspectives on the horrible reality for women who have been denied the fundamental right to  ‘bodily autonomy’:

if a woman does not have the right to decide what happens to her own body … her very personhood is undermined. (Anna Fured)

Continue reading “No More Silent Waiting”

Issue 2 is live

Hello to everyone following Not Very Quiet. We sincerely apologise for the avalanche of 66 poems than have now arrived in your inbox.

It’s safe to follow our blog again. The next issue will be published in September – we’ll let you know a few days before so you can unfollow us.

We hope you enjoy Issue 2.

Issue 2 coming 10 March 2018

You may want to change your settings for a few days

To everyone following NVQ – we’re about to publish our second issue. More than 300 poems were submitted and we picked 66.

Since each poem is a post, followers may want to change their settings or unfollow this blog for a few days so that your email inbox isn’t overloaded with ‘new post’ notifications.

We really appreciate your support. And we hope you enjoy issue 2.

Women’s poetry night

The Not Very Quiet editors are hosting women’s poetry evenings every third Monday in 2018 at Smith’s Alternative in Canberra.

We’ll have featured poets, book launches, open mic and more …

Check out the calendar on Smith’s Alternative website for program details.

Third Monday of the month
7:00 to 9:00 pm

Come early to sign up for the open mic. Each open mic poet is invited to read one poem for up to three minutes.

A review of Not Very Quiet’s first issue

‘Women poets loud and lusty’

Republished from ‘A Poet’s Slant’ blog

For a long and lusty blast of poetry by women from almost every continent in the world go right now to the Not Very Quiet website. We’ve been waiting for it since its announcement early in the year — and it’s here. Congratulations to Moya Pacey and Sandra Renew on their vision and on this first issue full of beautiful and often startling words.

The debut issue was launched on September 25 at Smith’s Alternative in Canberra to a packed house. The Not Very Quiet event with performances and readings by poets from the Canberra region was followed by the launch of new collections by the co-editors: Black Tulipsby Moya Pacey (Recent Work Press) and Who Sleeps at Night?: Poetry of Conflict by Sandra Renew (Ginninderra Press).

Lizz Murphy

Irish-Australian poet Lizz Murphy has published thirteen books, eight of them poetry titles. Published widely in Australian journals and anthologies with publication also in Canada, China, England, India, Ireland, Poland, US. She writes between Binalong NSW and Canberra and is currently The Canberra Times Poetry Editor.

NVQ on Facebook

We have a new Facebook page for Not Very Quiet. Join us … we’ll be posting regular updates and looking forward to your comments.

We’ve chosen this Sulphur-crested cockatoo to represent NVQ on Facebook – it’s a particularly loud and omni-present Australian parrot.

Parrot with white feathers and a yellow crest.

Found in Translation: Women’s Voices From Japan – A Bilingual Poetry Reading

On a chilly Spring night at the University of Canberra, we gather to listen to four Japanese poets and their translators – Takako Arai (with Jen Crawford), Kayoko Yamasaki (with Subhash Jaireth), Harumi Kawaguchi (with Melinda Smith) and Hiromi Ito (with Jeffrey Angles).

This event (part of the Poetry on the Move Festival) is splendid not simply because of the poetry which stands on its own merit in Japanese and in English but because of the way in which it is delivered by both poets and translators (who are all poets as well). Rina Kikuchi (who organised this event and, with Jen Crawford, edited the excellent anthology Poet to Poet: Contemporary Women Poets from Japan) asserts that her selection of these poets was to break the illusion of Japanese women and to discard and displace “outdated stereotypes of their ‘obedient’ and ‘passive’ nature”. These poets were chosen to demonstrate the variety and diversity of women’s voices in Japan and they definitely succeed in doing that.

Continue reading “Found in Translation: Women’s Voices From Japan – A Bilingual Poetry Reading”

NVQ launch of issue 1

We had a great night at Smiths Alternative! Many thanks to Jacqui Malins for launching Issue 1, to the poets who performed their works and to the wonderful turnout of NVQ supporters.

Watch this space for details on Issue 2. We plan to open submissions from November 2017 through January 2018.

The launch crowd at Smiths Alternative cafe.

Launch at Smiths Alternative, 25 September 2017