Who am I?

Personal Details

  • Name: Nalini Haynes
  • Nationality: Australian Citizen
  • Location: Canberra
  • Email: nalinimeiyin (at) gmail (dot) com
  • References available upon request

Professional Profile

Nalini Haynes is an award-winning writer and artist. Ever since she can remember, she’s loved reading and telling stories, leading to a career in writing and editing. For the past 5 years, she’s been at the helm of Dark Matter Zine, an online magazine specialising in reviews of fiction media and interviewing creative people — like authors, actors, publishers and musicians — as well as hosting guest blogs, writing pop-culture news posts and more. Nalini is managing editor, senior writer, public liaison, social media manager and webmaster; she does everything from HTML coding to writing articles to organising podcasts.

Nalini will graduate from the Associate Degree of Professional Writing and Editing at RMIT in December 2015.

Nalini has been freelancing as a writer and appearing as a guest interviewee or guest blogger on other websites. For example, the Wheeler Centre approached Nalini to write the piece ‘Eye and Prejudice: A Vision For Equity‘. The Arts Centre Melbourne engaged Nalini to interview children on the autism spectrum, to ghost write and edit their stories for the ‘I think I can’ project‘ in 2014, a collaboration with the Terrapin Puppet Theatre.

Nalini’s passion for helping people achieve their potential is evident in teaching roles and in workshopping situations. She’s taught essay-writing to other students and assertiveness training to Vietnamese-speaking women using a translator.

Nalini is interested in diverse roles including writer, ghost writer, editor, social media manager, website editor, publicist and teaching.

While working in other fields, Nalini plans to undertake a PhD in Representations of Disability in Science Fiction and Fantasy because those genres lead the way for societal development and equity is not yet a reality.

My best work



What I am good at

Skills & Knowledge


  • writing, editing and managing Dark Matter Zine, an online magazine
  • writing essays, articles and blogs
  • interviewing (both interviewing others and being interviewed, written and audio/visual)
  • organising and facilitating panel discussions for podcasts
  • Professional Writing and Editing student at RMIT with distinctions and high distinctions
  • copyediting and copywriting
  • understanding of sociology and social justice issues: Master of Social Science (2005)
  • social media manager: Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Goodreads, Reddit, Tumblr etc
  • excellent communication skills


  • Adobe: Acrobat, InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Digital Editions
  • Apple: Pages, Calendar, Reminders, Photos, iCloud, iBooks, other standard Mac, iPhone and iPad software
  • Microsoft: Word, Excel, Power Point, Outlook, standard PC and android software
  • browsers: Safari, Internet Explorer, Chrome and Firefox
  • email software: Gmail, Outlook, Apple Mail
  • cloud software: iCloud, Dropbox, Google docs
  • WordPress development and management
  • HTML
  • podcast software: Skype, Callburner, Audacity


  • Melbourne Writers Festival 2014, various
  • ‘Reviewing the reviewers’, Writers Victoria 2014
  • Small Press Network conference 2013
  • WriteAbility program, Writers Victoria 2013
  • The Writer’s Toolkit, Writers Victoria 2013
  • No nonsense spec fic, Victorian Writers’ Centre 2012
  • Writing for the Web, Victorian Writers’ Centre 2012
  • Essay Writing, Victorian Writers’ Centre 2011
  • Editing, Victorian Writers’ Centre 2011
  • The Art of Criticism, Melbourne Writers Festival 2011

Hobbies & Interests

  • Reading


    Ever since she was little, Nalini has loved reading. She currently reviews for Dark Matter Zine.

  • Movies


    Nalini wouldn't call herself a movie buff but she enjoys watching TV and movies.

  • Photography


    Photography is much faster than drawing or painting. Nalini enjoys taking photos, portraits and landscapes.

  • Painting and drawing

    Painting and drawing

    Painting and drawing is a form of meditation, helping Nalini to observe the world around her.

  • Technology


    Nalini is not an iSheep, no, not at all. She also enjoys playing computer games.

  • Sports


    Nalini enjoys working out at the gym, yoga and walking. Lately she's been using 'Run, Zombies! 5K'

My Professional Background

Work Experience

2012 June - Present


Freelance writer and editor

Nalini undertakes short-term contracts as a freelance writer, editor and researcher for various agencies. For example:

  • Arts Centre Melbourne engaged Nalini to interview children on the autism spectrum and write or ghost write their stories of engagement with Terrapin Puppet Theatre in the I think I can project
  • The Wheeler Centre engaged Nalini to write an article on disability

2012 June - 2012 June

ComCare, Australian Public Service

ComCare officer

Nalini undertook a short-term task-oriented contract for ComCare’s fraud investigation unit. When another ComCare employee from a different section asked what she was doing, Nalini’s manager replied, ‘If we told you, we’d have to kill you’.

So she’s not telling what she did.

Say ‘Thank you’.

2010 August - Present

Dark Matter Zine

Managing Editor

Nalini is senior editor, lead writer and producer of Dark Matter Zine. She liaises with authors and publishers, interviews personalities, manages social media, edits, proof-reads, writes reviews, codes in HTML and more.

2015 June - Present

Fantastica publishing


Nalini is a jack-of-all trades at Fantastica publishing, undertaking tasks from social media management (mostly Twitter) to research to updating mailing lists using Excel.

2005 July - 2006 January

CNAHS, Department of Health SA

CNAHS Community Health Worker ASO4

In the six months Nalini had 3 separate contracts to work for CNAHS, she undertook the following tasks:

  • counselling
  • supporting the Multicultural Women’s Group including running assertiveness training and speaking through an interpreter
  • making appointments with clients, case management notes, writing including reports and referrals
  • file creation and management
  • updating two databases and spreadsheet client booking system

Nalini’s clients included:

  • adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse
  • survivors of domestic violence, both those still in their abusive relationships and those in recovery after leaving
  • people with depression and anxiety

2003 July - 2005 July

BCS Counselling Centre and Malvern Centre for Counselling

Self-employed counsellor

Nalini worked as a self-employed counsellor within the BCS Counselling Centre and Malvern Centre for Counselling as well as visiting people’s homes. This involved counselling a variety of clients including:

  • an Indigenous person who identified as a lesbian
  • adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse
  • survivors of domestic violence, both those still in their abusive relationships and those in recovery after leaving
  • a survivor of a Cambodian death camp
  • people with depression and anxiety

Nalini’s primarily used cognitive-behavioural counselling with gestalt therapy as a means of delving deeper to aid client exploration and speed up client recovery. Her primary concern was to support and empower clients.

1992 January - 1996 February


Family duties

In between leaving the Australian Public Service in 1992 and starting her bachelor’s degree in 1996, Nalini was a full-time mum with two children, one of whom was in and out of hospital.

1986 May - 1992 January

Australian Public Service

Various positions — ASO1 and ASO2

There are two certainties in life: death and the taxation officer. Nalini used to be one of them. In her time in the Australian Taxation Office, Nalini held various positions including

  • file clerk (and you would not believe the abundance of files and file movements! Or maybe you would)
  • courier (because those tax files were taken from section to section, including from building to building, and every file movement was recorded in the database)
  • Installments clerk (including filing group certificates and helping taxpayers get their group certificates from late and/or uncooperative employers)
  • TFN clerk (because every Australian taxpayer needs a Tax File Number, which required identity checks and entering information into the database)
  • OSI facilitator (In 1987-88 she was seconded to the OSI program where a departmental restructure gained productivity savings to earn a wage increase, the first trade-off of its kind in Australia. Her tasks included everything from running training courses to writing newsletters, facilitating workshops to taking minutes at board meetings)

Nalini also spent a year working at the former Department of Community Services and Health where she administered the Domiciliary Nursing Care Benefit, a social security-type  payment for carers of people with disabilities.

Nalini left the Australian Public Service to take on full-time home duties.

1984 January - 1985 January

Salamanca Market


Nalini was a real mover and shaker when she was a teenager. After leaving Lower Longley Trading because she had to attend matriculation college on Fridays, she spent Friday evenings cooking wholemeal croissants to sell at Salamanca Market on Saturdays.

1983 November - 1984 January

Lower Longley Trading

Baker and sales assistant

Friends of the family sought a hard-working teenager to help in their professional kitchen baking wholemeal bread and crumpets as well as boiling jams. Nalini spent a summer working in their kitchen and selling their goods at Salamanca Market when she wasn’t volunteering at the Tasmanian Wilderness Society.

1983 November - 1984 January

Tasmanian Wilderness Society


After moving to the ‘big smoke’ (aka Hobart), Nalini’s mother volunteered to help in the postal department of the Tasmanian Wilderness Society but couldn’t meet her commitments. She volunteered Nalini instead. The shop manager promptly took himself off for a holiday so Nalini spent several days a week opening and closing the Tasmanian Wilderness Society shop and managing the postal orders. Sadly, this came to a close when she returned to school the following year.



  • Master of Social Science 2005
  • Graduate Diploma of Social Science 2004
  • Bachelor of Arts 2003


  • Golden Key International Honours Society
  • winner of the Chronos Award for Best Fan Writer 2013
  • winner of the Dawn Slade-Faull Award 2008
  • selected for the upstART mentoring and exhibition program, Adelaide Fringe Festival, 2008
  • selected to exhibit in Awakenings, a disability arts festival, in 2007 and 2008.
  • selected and completed the Reins, Rope and Red Tape disability arts advocacy program, 2007
  • selected for A Place in the World art exhibition, University of Adelaide, 2006


  • Ditmar Award for Best Fan Artist 2015
  • Ditmar Award for Best Fan Publication 2014 (as writer/editor)
  • Ditmar Award for Best Fan Artist 2014
  • Chronos Award for Best Fan Publication 2013 (as writer/editor)
  • Chronos Award for Best Fan Artist 2012
  • Chronos Award for Best Fan Written Work 2012
  • Chronos Award for Best Fan Artwork 2012
  • Chronos Award for Best Fan Publication 2012 (as writer/editor)

My Education


2013 February - 2015 November


Associate Degree in Professional Writing and Editing

Intent on raising the bar to a new level, Nalini has undertaken the Associate Degree of Professional Writing and Editing at RMIT. This has included writing and editing studies as well as desktop publishing, InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator. Nalini invariably achieves distinctions or high distinctions. She expects to finish this degree in November 2015.

2007 June - 2007 December

Arts Access SA

Reins, Rope and Red Tape

For professional development and to connect more with the disability community, Nalini undertook the Reins, Rope and Red Tape training course, a disability arts advocacy program by people with disabilities for people with disabilities run by Arts Access South Australia before it was defunded in 2008–2009. The motto of this program was ‘Nothing about us without us’.

2005 February - 2007 November

University of South Australia

Visual Art

After completing a Master of Social Science, Nalini aimed to undertake a PhD in Representations of Disability in Visual Art. As a precursor, she began a Bachelor of Visual Art at the University of South Australia but UniSA refused disability access. Nalini achieved a distinction average for over one-third of the degree then she moved to Melbourne to support her partner’s career.

2004 February - 2005 November

University of South Australia

Master of Social Science (Counselling Studies)

Nalini has always been passionate about social justice and helping others achieve their potential. As part of her studies, she completed a Master of Social Science while working part-time as a self-employed counsellor.

2003 February - 2004 November

University of South Australia

Graduate Diploma of Social Science (Counselling Studies)

Leading into the Master’s degree, Nalini completed a Graduate Diploma of Social Science while working part-time as a self-employed counsellor.

1996 February - 2002 November

Tabor college

Bachelor of Arts (Christian Counselling)

Nalini was always passionate about helping people. Originally she planned to become a minister of religion with counselling as her speciality. This degree combined theology and counselling studies.

Nalini started studying part-time externally and finished her studies as a full-time student combining internal and external studies. Throughout this period, she supported her husband’s career and cared for her two children, one of whom had several operations.


References available upon request

My email

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