The WILAA Survey
Our Survey of Australian Writers is intended to be a look at what writers felt about their careers, and what (if any) differences might be found by gender.
Women writers face unique challenges, things that are often only spoken about in general terms and in an amorphous sense that many other women or non-binary people feel similarly. What we hoped to uncover was whether statistics bore this out.
In our 2016 Survey there were 262 responses to the survey. This is a wonderful base to start what we intend to be an annual snapshot of the situation for women and non-binary writers in Australia. Due to the low number of men taking the survey, it is hard to extrapolate the differences in how men and women viewed the same topics or challenges, which we would like to resolve with a greater number of male respondents in future years.
We would like to address a concern that has been raised with us regarding the survey. Women of colour approached WILAA to express their concern that the survey was too general to encompass the unique challenges many in their community faced. They wanted to see a survey that reflected the particular challenges or issues women of colour and other marginalised groups face, which many white women do not. WILAA acknowledges that this was a flaw of the first survey. We apologise for not having addressed this in our first survey and endeavour to improve. and have redesigned future surveys to encourage responses that reflect more intersectional experiences including in areas of gender identity, sexuality, disability and race.