Ella Donald

About My TinyLetter

Regular updates of work, as well as behind-the-scenes looks at what I was thinking about when I wrote a piece or some extra things I want to say, as well as original writing, and recommendations of writing, films, music, and anything else that’s inspiring me.

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I thought of a lot of other things while writing too. This scene from Halt and Catch Fire (full screencaps), which speaks to the beating down that queer people are subjected to from very early in their lives. I thought of the plebiscite, which has left me feeling broken and bruised and wondering if those who are so vocally against understand how it feels to have a national debate on the validity of yourself. Writing this piece comes from a place of bravery – for some, it’ll confirm something that maybe people have thought for a long time but I’ve never said publicly in as many words. But lately, in many ways, the goings on, despite how painful they are, have been galvanising and made me consider maybe throwing away the final barriers of being totally uninhibited and proud. So, here it is (again). When something can speak this deeply, it’s a special thing worth talking about.

When I was leaving, I thought of one of the last lines in the film. After being presented with her trophy, Billie Jean briefly retreats to the locker room and cries, before reemerging, taking a moment on the sidelines before reentering. Her stylist and close friend Ted Tinling (Alan Cumming) finds her. His words have been said many times before, but can never be said enough. “I think you are maybe more ready than you know. Times change. You just changed them,” he says. “Someday, we’ll be free to be who we are. But for now, time to join the dance.”

Q & A

Why did you start a TinyLetter?

A couple of things. Firstly, I wanted something that would be able to evolve a little more than a blog over the next few years. I could post recommendations as well as original writing and extra thoughts about my work, all together. I also wanted something where I could update people on what’s going on that’s different to a social media feed, where you may miss some posts.

What is your experience of the community?

Eclectic, warm, imaginative.

What advice would you give?

Think outside the box, and something that you can keep updating regularly.

I’m an freelance journalist and critic across a wide variety of topics from Brisbane. My work regularly appears in publications such as Vanity Fair, The Guardian, The Age, Junkee, SBS, Brisbane Times, The Sydney Morning Herald, Little White Lies, Kill Your Darlings, Metro Magazine, and Screen Education, and has been featured by platforms including Netflix. With backgrounds in film and television, dance, fashion, theatre, photography, and music, I’ve written extensively on these topics, as well as covering celebrity, popular and youth culture, social and cultural issues, and technology (I particularly love the increasingly narrow divide between technology and culture) from industry, audience, and academic perspectives in a variety of formats.