Jessica Walton is a queer, disabled writer and speaker. They co-wrote an episode of Get Krack!n focused on disability, which aired on ABC in 2019. They are the author of graphic novel Stars In Their Eyes, with artwork by Aśka (Fremantle Press 2021) and Introducing Teddy, illustrated by Dougal MacPherson (Bloomsbury 2016). Jess also has two short stories for teens and kids published in Australian anthologies Funny Bones (Allen and Unwin 2019) and Meet Me at the Intersection (Fremantle Press 2018), as well as poetry in anthologies, magazines and journals.
Dr Yves Rees (they/them) is a writer and historian based on unceded Wurundjeri land. They are a Lecturer in History at La Trobe University, the co-host of Archive Fever history podcast, and the author of All About Yves: Notes from a Transition (Allen & Unwin, 2021). Rees was awarded the 2020 ABR Calibre Essay Prize and a 2021 Varuna Residential Fellowship. Their writing has featured in the Guardian, The Age, Sydney Review of Books, Australian Book Review, Meanjin and Overland, among other publications.
Peter Sipeli has more than two decades of expertise in using and managing advocacy through artistic expression. He is an Arts Manager, and supporter of the Spokenword arts movement in Fiji. Peter founded 'The Poetry Shop, Fiji' six years ago and facilitates regular poetry events in Suva and poetry circle discussions with new and emerging Fijian writers.
He works as a gay activist using storytelling as advocacy. Peter founded the online arts magazine ARTtalk, Fiji that in 2017 ran 10 issues showing arts in Fiji and across the region. From 2018 to 2020, ARTtalk, Fiji is incubated at the Oceania Centre for ARTS, Culture and Pacific Studies, alongside a podcast series, an audio component to ARTtalk.
Peter is passionate about developing the literary arts in Fiji and addressing prolonged silences in the art form. A SLAM poet with a large following, he is a champion of the revival of the literary movement in Fiji, working to provide spaces for new and emerging poets and artists to enable the framing of authentic local voices. In 2016, Peter was among seven presenters who participated in the inaugural Tedx Suva in which he spoke on 'Storytelling for Advocacy'.