Newcastle Writers' Festival

Michelle Morgan - Sunday, April 06, 2014

Even the rain couldn't keep the crowds away from the Newcastle Writers' Festival this weekend. It was a fantastic program with many highlights including the panel discussion on Radical Newcastle that looked at inspirational aspects of Newcastle's colourful history, the high-energy seminar by Kathryn Heyman on the art and craft of writing fiction, and the thought-provoking discussions about crime fiction and anti-heroes with Garry DisherAngela Savage and Adrian McKinty.

» Share this post

Festival of Golden Words

Michelle Morgan - Monday, March 17, 2014

I've just spent an amazing three days at the Festival of Golden Words in Beaconsfield, Tasmania. On day one, I brushed up on my writing skills at a children's writing workshop run by Lian Tanner and listened to some very entertaining talks by Andy Griffiths and Nick Earls in a program that included other fine Australian children's and YA authors.

As well as the children's program, there were two days of concurrent author talks and panel discussions in the marquees set up next to the community centre. There were so many interesting talks, not only by fiction writers, but by food, wine, comedy, historical and biographical writers. it was hard to choose which sessions to go to. My personal favourites were the interviews with Carrie Tiffany, Alex Miller and Hannah Kent as well as the panel discussions that included professors Henry Reynolds and Peter Stanley on the topics of the celebration of war and ANZAC in Australia as well as the neglect of Aboriginal history. It was refreshing to listen to informed arguments being discussed empathetically and respectfully. Every session that I went to also allowed plenty of time for questions from the audience.

There was also a fantastic session called "The Pitch" where budding authors were able to pitch their manuscript or ideas for a book to a panel of publishing experts. It was so interesting listening to the range of stories being pitched in different and engaging ways. Irina Dunn did a great job of chairing this session, which could have easily gone on much longer.

To lighten things up, there were also some very amusing sessions, such as the one chaired by Wendy Harmer to discuss comedy that included Nikki Gemmell and Rachel Treasure. For the foodies and wine connoisseurs there were tastings and talks with Maggie Beer, Max Allen and many other food and wine writers at local wineries.

It was a very inspiring and entertaining way to spend 3 days in the beautiful Tamar Valley. If you plan on going to Beaconsfield, you should allow a couple of hours at least to visit the fabulous Mine & Heritage Centre, which is not only at the site of the Beaconsfield mine disaster, but has fascinating exhibits throughout the historical buildings:

Goodbye Tassie and many thanks to the organisers of the Festival of Golden Words!

» Share this post

Recent Posts


bill condon Bookshop Bowral theatre Bowral Art Gallery Mitchell Library potts point bookshop narrabundah college allen & unwin frankfurt book fair ainslie + gorman arts centre australian literature MacLean's Booksellers middle grade fiction chloe mauger gerringong historical society museum kids' book review ubud writers & readers festival elizabeth gilbert luke johnson barbara braxton 14 february 1966 teen fiction literary lunch jump for jordan Dymocks Brisbane australian federation of graduate women QBD kate gordon bookloons autumn revel telopea park school spark award older readers 2017 society of children's book writers and illustrators romy sharp byron writers festival Spotlight On berkelouw books Newcastle writers' festival barnes&noble Abbey's Bookshop Port Macquarie Library copyediting 12 curly questions deb robins Lismore Library goodreads berkelouw book barn bookshops fishpond iTunes di bates nowra library WritingNSW teachers' notes bologna children's book fair sydney mechanics school of arts library lovereading4kids shoalhaven libraries Sydney Harbour Bridge sandy fussell eBook CBCA Children's Book Week seven mile beach children's / YA literature ANZAC Day goodreads giveaway read3r'zrevu australian standing orders deep sky writers' festivals St Paul's Primary School southern highlands writers' festival festival of golden words bradman museum authors author videos Moss Vale Campus Library ulladulla library sally odgers writing process blog hop Reader's Companion Armidale writing workshops Taree Library kindle heart of australia Books + Publishing australian reading hour children's book council of australia illawarra south coast skylight books michelle morgan hans christian andersen holidays griffin press Broadbeach Library flying through clouds indie publishing Muswellbrook Library buzz words Magpies hnsa giveaway readhowyouwant tasmania canberra Australia Day mabo day nsw writers' centre libraries awards book tour school visits bushwalking Waterstones smashwords scbwi reviews scbwi australia jackie french good reading magazine believing refugees Grafton Library book launch sophie masson combined book exhibit playwriting fran knight playwrights retreat international children's book day 2014 arielle gamble tanika gupta self-publishing CBCA book of the year awards songs sydney southern cross books bay of fires smsa library YA fiction lyn linning mETAphor ubud, bali martin luther king, jr elaine ousten mother's day NAIDOC week festival of dangerous ideas literary events all the buzz about books just write for kids booktopia State Library of NSW alexander mccall smith gorman arts centre highlife magazine sharon mcguinness tom keneally centre illustrators 19 March 1932 interviews valentine's day Paperchain Manuka nook big book day out paperback dymocks sir charles kingsford smith Reading Time Dymock's Canberra lachlan philpott sydney opera house goodbye frankie spark award 2017 historical novel society australasia national simultaneous storytime children's book council of australia NSW branch playwriting festival ReadPlus Good Reading bookstop[ amazon kindle jamberoo public school Historical Novel Society book cover design historical fiction Anniversary Day refugee week ann harth amazon indigenous literacy foundation kobo bookworld children's book council of australia indigenous literacy day clancy tucker author talks Woollahra Library too late for love better read than dead festivals Gordon Library blog tour eBook mall coming-of-age fiction book fairs atyp captain tobias furneaux southern highland news act writers centre racing the moon Quirindi Library children's book council of australia national conference decimal currency book depository book trailer griffin theatre reconciliation