For thousands of years people have known about the beneficial effects of reading and writing: bibliotherapy. But in the social media era students have created something new…

In a Story Factory Big Project for 2019-20 teenagers wrote InstaPoems in response to real-life issues, and shared them online, dispensing our newest invention – InstaHope!

In a series of one-off writing workshops at high schools right across Sydney and Western Sydney, and online workshops for those writing at home, students were guided to write poems for Instagram to cure some of life’s problems.

There is more than one way to get this InstaHope excellence in your life. Undoubtedly the most thrilling way is with the publication of our book – INSTAHOPE (which you can buy in our bookstore) but you can also get into it on the program’s namesake, Instagram, where we shared these written delights on @sydneystoryfactory

This project has been generously supported by BridgeLane and the Sheargold Foundation.

Program sponsor logo

Stories from this Program


By Ambrose, Year 10

How to be truly content when you see the pain in everyone, the way they train to hold back water fountains. Here are some things you can do: get dates...

cure /kjʊə,kjɔː/ noun: restore to health

By Farbeen, Year 10

first whiff of scent from a dish you just cooked the steam from a hot shower filling up a winter evening the scent of a jasmine candle filling up a...

InstaHope: Untitled

By Halley, Year 10

Sometimes, the future doesn’t seem so nice. The future seems bleak, cold, lonely, faraway no no. Get together your fears, talk to them. What do they need? Take care of...

@SydneyStoryFactory on Instagram

Story Factory acknowledges the oldest living culture in the world.  We also extend our respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and acknowledge their ongoing connection to land, sea and community.  Always was and always will be.  Artwork by Danielle Mate.
This week Story Factory Executive Director Cath Keenan is down in Canberra to celebrate 20 years of the Australian of the Year Local Hero Award. The Local Hero award celebrates people who lead by example and encourage others to be active in their own communities and become agents of positive change for a more diverse and inclusive Australia. You can read more about the awards and some of the other amazing previous receipts here:
Become a part of our vibrant volunteer community in 2023!  We are on the lookout for creative writing tutors both online and in-person to help nurture and amplify the voices of young people across NSW.  If you are interested in getting involved, the first step is to join us for an information session where we’ll provide more details about the volunteer role and what’s involved.  The next information sessions are on:  Thursday 19th January 3.30pm – 4.30pm via zoom.
Friday 20th January 12.00pm – 1.00pm at the Story Factory Redfern Centre.
Tuesday 24th January 12.00pm – 1.00pm via zoom.  Find out more and book in via the link in our bio.  📷 Jim A. Barker
Story Factory will be closed from Wednesday 21 December until Monday 16th January. We will respond to all enquiries, and mail all book orders, on our return in the new year.  Massive thanks to everyone for your continued support. We wish you  a very safe and happy holiday!
Recently we have been running a very special multilingual writing project called In a Flash, inviting people of all ages to send us a very short story or poem in English, Mandarin, Arabic or Vietnamese. 
We’ve been getting such wonderful responses that we’ve decided to extend the deadline to next year to allow more time for people to submit their writing!  Here’s one of the many great submissions we have received:  Stranded upon the shore, battered, beat and sore.
A glimpse of hope starts to rise
River water taking human size  River-person helped the boat
To keep it balanced and to stay afloat
As the boat sailed away into morning light
The river person sunk back into the water that night  Submissions are now open until the 28th February!  Follow the link in our bio to find out more and enter now.  This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.