Wednesday, 10 September 2014

BWF14—memories, selfies and inspiration

Another successful Brisbane Writers Festival has been put to bed, and all that remains are memories, lots of notes, a few selfies with authors, and the obligatory pub lunch for volunteers this Friday.

Here, I’d like to share with you some of my highlights from BWF14.
Kerri with Caroline Overington

Driving the lovely Women’s Weekly associate editor and author Caroline Overington to Corinda Library and moderating her session. We spoke about everything from raising children to finding time in our busy weeks for writing to her latest book Can you keep a secret? and the process behind Caroline’s next book (due out next month) called The Last Woman Hanged, the tragic story of Louisa Collins.

Karen Joy Fowler

Indulging in a master class with Karen Joy Fowler and her advice on ‘the issue of mess’ in short stories, and a love story master class with Amie Kaufman who helped us find our ‘unbreakable kinks’ so that we can write the book we would want to read.

Taking visiting writers program authors out to the University of Queensland, including The Guardian journalist Luke Harding, Australian Geographic editor John Pickrell, Stella prize-winner and historian Clare Wright, and UK poet Simon Armitage.
    Clare Wright
Getting to use my social media ninja skills by tweeting updates throughout the sessions.
 Being able to add bookseller to my repertoire, selling Clare’s books after her event.

David Malouf

 Sitting for one entirely blissful hour in the Red Box at the State Library of Queensland and listening to David Malouf recite poetry from his collections Typewriter Music and Earth Hour (his new one).

Enjoying a hilarious session with Kimberly Freeman, Francis Whiting and Josephine Moon chaired by Mosquito Advertising author Kate Hunter about the bonds of female relationships in life and in literature. When I asked what was the one thing that women feel and experience through generations, they all answered simultaneously: ‘love’.

That definitive answer, as well as Amie’s master class, and Caroline’s overwhelming generosity with her tips and time have given me much-needed and valuable direction in my historical fiction. I seem to recall writing something similar in a blog a year ago about sharing the first 20 pages of my manuscript with US editor Hannah Gordon Brown at last year's Brisbane Writers Festival. 

I’d better get to it, then!


  1. BWF14 was my first, and I had a ball. Great to have met you and so many other friendly and interesting people. I might not be ready to tackle a manuscript just yet, but you have inspired me to head back to my own poor neglected blog.

  2. It was wonderful to have you moderate my session. Thank you so much, Kerri. I can't wait to read your book (s)!
    Caroline Overington