The travelling writers festival

Posted on 1 November 2010


Most writers festivals are location specific: the Brisbane Writers Festival, the Sunshine Coast Writers Festival, the Tropical Writers Festival, even the National Young Writers Festival. Not so the Emerging Writers Festival, although it is held in Melbourne.

I went to EWF for the first time this year, just the one weekend seeing as I have a day job that takes up five sevenths of my days. It’s an interesting program, and is created specifically for writers and publishers rather than readers and best seller groupies.

The whole festival was 10 days long this year and run by my friend Lisa. One of my favourite things about it is its use of social media. While it is fairly basic, it is also pervasive and is based on a real understanding of how interactive technology can enhance the experience of a festival for attendees and allows people who can’t be there in person to experience some of what the festival has to offer.

Another of my favourite things about Lisa’s festival is that she does simple, innovative things that seem obvious once they’re organised but don’t seem to occur to anyone else, like taking the festival to another city. This Sunday EWF is in Sydney for a one-day roadshow event. It looks like it’s going to be an intensive day of workshops and talks kicking off at 10am and running until 6pm.

The best part is—I’m going! I’m flying down early on Sunday morning and back latish that night, so I expect to be a little weary at work on Monday but I also expect I’ll be all inspired and refreshed from spending eight or nine hours with down-to-earth creative types like Ms Dempster, Bastian Fox Phelan and other presenters and facilitators who I don’t know yet.

Image credit: marc falardeau