Author: byronbaywritersfestival

The 18th Byron Bay Writers Festival Program Released

‘If there’s a story to be told and if the story has some validity, some resonance, then you don’t keep it to yourself.’ From Stories We Tell by Canadian Film Director Sarah Polley The 18th Byron Bay Writers Festival Program is out now! Be inspired by this major literary event and its cavalcade of more than 130 writers, thinkers and creative spirits and their world of ideas over three action-packed days (1-3 August). Designed to challenge, provoke, entertain and connect, the Festival features a strong core of powerfulAustralian writers together with acclaimed international talents. Securing celebrated UK author Jeanette Winterson, is an enormous coup for the Festival along with other international writers including Poe Ballantine, Geoff Dyer, David Finkel and Susie Orbach. We’re not shying away from the complicated issues. Malcolm Fraser, Antony Loewenstein, Joanne McCarthy, and Kate McClymont are all attending so expect robust debate about Australia’s international relations and how we treat some of the world’s most vulnerable people. Of course, it wouldn’t be a festival without food events. Travel the Indian spice …

A terrifying prospect turns to pleasure

I’ve always had a fear of public speaking so naturally I entered the Perfect Pitch. What I was thinking of? Pitch Perfect was session where six writers were selected to talk about their manuscripts for five minutes. It means putting your work and your ideas right out there. I was still nervous when it came time yesterday to pitch my novel, The Search Engine. I hadn’t slept well and had been busy with the blogging team but had a good support team of friends. That helps. The public speaking book and visualizations I had done helped as well. It felt a bit like going in for an operation. You have to take a deep breath and know it will be better when it’s over. I watched all the previous pitchers first – Annette Kendall with her Lost in Kakadu novel from which she read. (The judges said they hoped everyone had selected something to read. Tick.) I watched Marissa Treichel with her excellent sounding parenting book, and Annette Marfording with her fascinating idea for an …

Laughter galore in Bangalow ‘tin’ hall

Bangalow’s historic A & I hall’s unique pressed metal hall resounded last night to the laughter at the comic storytelling by compere Tim Ferguson who wrote the book about writing comedy, . Libbi Gorr who has written The A To Z Of Mummy Manners: An Etiquette Guide For Managing Other Children’s Mothers And Assorted Mummy Dilemmas Mandy Nolan, Fiona Scott-Norman is a woman of comedic and writerly talents who has written a book with two covers 50 Reasons to Quit/Keep Smoking and she was a scream. Then there was Charlie Pickering, author of Impractical Jokes and a hilarious man. It was night of stand-up with jokes mostly unrepeatable on a family blog – no, mainly because the laughs came so fast – and with cakes cooked by Boy Scouts. What more could anyone ask for? Marian Edmunds

Red Dog vies with a planet of apes

The film Red Dog based on the Louis de Bernieres novel was launched at the Dendy complete with the author of the book and the canine star, Koko. The cinema was packed and there was a lot of appreciation for a uniquely Australian film. It opens this week against Planet of the Apes and Red Dog producer Nelson Woss says it’s crucial for Australian audiences to support their movies to keep them on their screens. It’s a very funny film with a great soundtrack. Go see it this weekend, or very soon. Louis de Bernieres has an idea of a world when he starts a novel but never ends up with a book he intended to write. For one thing, the characters don’t do what they are told, he told a packed Macquarie Marquee at Byron Bay Writers’ Festival in a one-to-one with festival director Candida Baker. Well, it started as a one-to-one. Then Koko, the dog appeared on stage. Koko is the star of Red Dog, the film based on de Berniere’s novel that …