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Sarah Joyce

“I love telling stories and I think stories are what drives us, as humans.”

Heartlines explores what it means to write – from the heart and soul – and where that writing takes us. Every writers’ journey is different, so we invite you to take a moment to read, pause and reflect on what it means to shape stories for the page.

Sarah Joyce is obsessed with herbal teas, reading, and has an affinity for enchanted forests and fairytales. Sarah loves being creative and has a passion for writing and film-making. She’s interested in helping to change the standards for new creatives to get into the industry.

Sarah recently completed participating in a 6-month mentoring program in partnership with My Studio, a arts studio run by the team at My Place. My Place provides flexible, individualised NDIS support services and care for individuals with disabilities in Western Australia.

Centre for Stories: What do you do when you’re not writing? What are you other passions?

Sarah Joyce: If you know me, you know I love to binge-watch a good series, and my favourite at the moment is Game of thrones and Boy Swallows Universe on Netflix. Currently, I’m reading Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros, Dune by Frank Herbert, and Ocean Vuong’s On Earth Were Briefly Gorgeous.

CFS: That’s a lot of reading! So, you’re also a writer. Can you tell us what drives your passion to do what you do? That is, why do you write?

SJ: I love writing because I love telling stories and I think stories are what drives us, as humans we tell stories to live, it’s part of our culture, and religion, and it teaches us things.

CFS: You recently completed a 6-month long mentoring program where you and your mentor, Marise Phillps, worked on finishing a series of short essays, poetry and short stories called ‘The Nature Fairy Companion: A guide for slow living, connecting to nature and becoming enchanted again’. What did you enjoy about working with Marise?

SJ: Yes, I worked on a collection of diary entries and nature related pieces about being in harmony with nature in our busy world where productivity and money is what we value most.

I enjoyed learning a new perspective on writing and the changes I can make on my story. It’s helpful to get other opinions on your work to be able to know what to change or not, as improving my work is important as well as taking criticism.

CFS: What are you working on next?

SJ: I am working on some short stories that explore a dystopian society as well as a collection of essays on beauty sickness and beauty standards for women in our society as well as photos on emotions and female rage for SAE Creative Media Institute.

CFS: Can you share an extract of your writing?


Spring will always be my favourite time of year. I didn’t notice the changes in the seasons when I lived in foster care, but now I realise it was because of my lack of observation. Even in foster care, there are signs of grace and hope that spring brings. From the tips of budding trees to the gentler air and the loss of frostiness, spring breathes warmth into the world. I love the transformative and connecting feeling I get when I immerse myself in the warm embrace of the trees.

I believe that transforming our experiences in life is a gradual process. For me, it was a sweet realisation that I don’t have to rush into things. I can trust that nature provides for me and that I always have a place within her hands.

It’s easy to feel hopeless about the world we live in, the systems in place, and the way things are. However, armed with knowledge and the power to transform, we can choose to evolve like butterflies.

Sarah Joyce will commence a Hot Desk Fellowship at the Centre for Stories in February 2024 while she also continues her studies at the SAE Creative Media Institute in Northbridge, WA.

Writing Change, Writing Inclusion is Centre for Stories’ signature writing program for 2021 to 2024. Generously funded by The Ian Potter Foundation, Australia Council for the Arts, My Place, and Centre for Stories Founders Circle, this writing program features mentoring, hot desk, and publication opportunities for emerging writers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and/or Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander backgrounds.

Copyright © 2024 Sarah Joyce.

These stories have been licensed to the Centre for Stories by the Storyteller. For reproduction and distribution of these stories, please contact the Centre for Stories.

This interview was published on 7 February 2024.

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