Saturday, September 15, 2012

Brisbane Writers Festival

If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you probably know that I was at the Brisbane Writers Festival last week which, early mornings excepted, was a whole pile of fun! This was my third year as a volunteer, but because I wasn't up in the green room as I often am, I had a lot more opportunities to see a the panels, talks and meet a wider range of volunteers. Rather than go into any kind of boring blow by blow account here, I'm going to post a few highlights (and controversies) and share some of the excitement around!

*Germaine Greer was at the festival and delivered the opening address. Just quickly, can I mention how freaking irrelevant this woman has become? A couple of weeks ago she appeared on a political/news panel show and criticised our PM based on her pant suits (seriously? What happened to feminism?) and during her opening address she criticised Queensland literacy levels (which would have been fine if the stats were actually correct), attacked the Word Play (kids section of BWF) because "kids should be taught to read at school" (even though that is completely contradictory to what she moaned about re: literacy) and attacked the festival in terms of content, style and the people who attend. Ugh, seriously. What a freaking dampener.

*The Word Play event was phenomenal, so sad that I didn't live in Brisbane as a kid!! Andy Griffiths, John Boyne (who was LOVELY!), Nick Earls, and so many more! All the kids were extremely polite, and most of them drew little pictures and fan letters to give to the authors when they lined up at the signing table! Super cute!

*John De Graff is an amazing, intelligent and lovely man. He was one of the few adult events during the week (it's usually mostly the wordplay events) and happily signed dozens of exercise books for kids who had no idea who he was and possibly never will.

*The Pineapple lounge was a huge success! Cocktails, live music, authors delivering stories about life and love and what not. I know people often joke about authors drinking a lot but seriously, they drink a lot. So do readers apparently.

*Anita Heiss, Witi Ihimaera, Tiga Bayles and Dylan Coleman were fantastic in 'The All Blacks' panel. Probably my favourite of the week.


*That'll mean nothing to you unless you're from Australia most likely. But rest assured he's amazing.

*This was my first time with a camera phone so I made the most of taking photos at every opportunity, although I felt a little dodgy taking them during talks and panels so most ended up blurry and crappy and not worth sharing. But a couple were OK, and popped up on my twitter, facebook and tumblr pages.

*Photos: 1. John Boyne (author of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas during a Word Play event), 2. The BWF book heart sculpture, so many photos were taken with it! 3. Looking up at the State Library late one night, 4. The front facade of the State Library one night, 5. People enjoying the Pinapple Lounge, 6. Katherine Battersby (author of Squish Rabbit) having a cosy chat with fans and amateur authors.


  1. OMG I LOVE YOU FOR YOUR GREER RANT! I seriously hate her so much. What a fucking dick.

    This all looks amaazing, by the way :)

  2. Yeah she's been doing feminism a real disservice lately, no wonder there is such a stigma around feminism, which SHOULDN'T EVEN NEED TO BE A THING IN 2012!



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