Sydney Writers Festival = thinking time!

Recently I was going though the SWF program, checking which books we needed for the library (and which books to add to my reading list), which authors and events I wanted to go to and what general titbit writing information I could glean for our Writers in the Mist blog. So here is what I gathered:

Little Fictions

From the program: Come along to an evening of lively performances of long and short stories from Spineless Wonders authors. Featuring work by Joanne Burns, Ryan O’Neill and Julie Koh, Little Fictions is a platform for Australian writers to have their work read by professional actors, and for the public to indulge in the simple pleasure of being read to. In the style of New York’s Selected Shorts, this event was born out of an ardent desire to bring together people who love literature. Bookings at the door.

We have a Spineless Wonders title in our collection, “Cracking the spine : ten short Australian stories and how they were written”  and it looks attractive. The summary says:

This is the most innovative resource in Australian literature in many years. An anthology of contemporary short stories, each with a commentary by their authors, the collection breaks down the wall between the creative and discursive, the imagistic and the expository. Filled with cutting-edge, innovative writers and armed with an expansive definition of what it is to be an Australian, this will be at once accessible to undergraduate students and informative and challenging for their teachers.

Telegrams to Twitter: The Changing Face of Communication

From the program: The current exhibition at the Sydney Jewish Museum, titled Signs of Life, displays letters and postcards written by individuals to friends and family before and during the Holocaust. It’s a moving and poignant exhibition, as many of these letters were the final communication people had with their loved ones. In keeping with the theme of Signs of Life, five panellists between 20 and 80 years of age discuss how correspondence and communication have changed over the decades.

This one features a number of speakers, including Adele Horin and Kerri Sackville. Both of them maintains blogs. Blogs can be a good medium for writers and looking at what otjher writers do an online can be inspiring. See Adele’s blog here, and Kerri’s here.

Atul Gawande: What Matters in the End

This event is sold out at the time of writing. But we have Atul Gawande’s book “Being mortal : illness, medicine and what matters in the end” on the catalogue!

The Art of the Short Story

From the program: A world in miniature. A moment close up. A life glimpsed. The art of the short story lies in the ability to illuminate a pocket of the world, and writers can spend their lives trying to create a perfect storm of structure, character, place and emotion. Danielle Wood (Mothers Grimm), Nicholas Jose (Bapo) and Abigail Ulman (Hot Little Hands) discuss the joys and vexations of short fiction, and the challenges of creating a fully formed universe in just a few pages. They speak with Alice Grundy.

The title links above lead to the entries on our catalogue. Alice Grundy is Editor-in-Chief and co-founder of Seizure, an online literary hub.

Are you attending any SWF events? Send your comments, ideas and contribution to or add a comment to this post.


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