Hannah Kent and Rebecca Starford at the Adelaide launch of KYD Issue 1, March 2010.

It’s always sad at KYD when we say goodbye to one of our staff, but it’s especially so today as we bid a fond farewell to Hannah Kent, who co-founded the magazine and has shared the role of publishing director with me since 2010.

Hannah has always brought curiosity, dedication, passion and a healthy dose of good humour to the running of our little enterprise. So much has changed since we first brainstormed this project – we have become published authors, we have had children, we have even moved interstate – and much has changed about KYD from our original, scribbled-down concept. But our determination to make the publication grow and adapt and continue to be important in Australian literary culture remained.

I am so proud of what KYD has achieved, and I will always be grateful for the opportunity to have worked with my friend for so long on such a unique project. There is something very special about this kind of creative collaboration. Thanks for all the memories, HK, and for all the laughs along the way. We have been lucky to have you.

Fortunately for us, Hannah won’t be entirely disappearing from KYD – she is still presenting a range of courses both in-person and online as part of KYD​ Writers’ Workshops.

– Rebecca Starford

Goodbye, KYD

Ten years ago, Rebecca Starford and I sat down at a cafe table in Richmond and sketched out a rough vision for a new literary magazine. We wanted to create a publication that would hold its own alongside other eminent Australian literary journals, one that would welcome new and exciting voices and established writers, with high calibre essays and fiction selected and honed through rigorous editorial standards. We wanted to create the publication we wanted to read, make a vital and necessary contribution to the literary community, and celebrate Australian readers and writers from all kinds of backgrounds, with all their varied interests. 

Since that fateful meeting, Kill Your Darlings has grown from a printed, quarterly magazine to the flourishing website it is today, adapting to changing reading habits, incorporating new initiatives, and doing more than ever to support Australian writers and reach new readers here and overseas. To have seen it grow from strength to strength with each passing year has been a source of personal delight and pride. Now, as KYD has not only filled but surpassed all of our original ambitions, the time has come for me to bid a fond farewell to this incredible magazine and all who sail in her.

I would like to thank all of those I have worked with at Kill Your Darlings, from the earliest team members who threw their time and experience into creating the first issue, to the passionate team who currently work to create and promote incredible content. I would like to thank all the many writers who have published with KYD – it has been an honour to help facilitate the publication of your creative gold. I would also like to extend my gratitude to KYD’s readers, supporters and cheerleaders. Without you, KYD would never have survived her first fledgling year. 

I feel incredibly privileged to have been given the opportunity to assist in the creation and ongoing evolution of Kill Your Darlings, and while the time has come for me to throw myself into new projects and ventures, I look forward to cheering KYD onwards into the future. Thank you all for having me. 

– Hannah Kent

For more on the early days of KYD, read Gerald Elson’s conversation with Rebecca and Hannah from our final print edition.