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Brisbane Writer’s Festival

Just like if you are a Jeweler you would go to a Jeweler Conference to meet other’s in your industry, a Writer’s Festival is a great opportunity to meet writers, publishers and others in the field. This year I had the privilege to find time to make it to the Brisbane Writer’s Festival. This is a wonderful annual event which give writers the opportunity to hear from others in their field, meet and speak to publishers, as well as discuss and learn about what is happening in the world of publishing and writing. The reader also has the opportunity to meet their favourite authors and get book signed and grill them on their stories. Some events can cost you up to $100, but others are completely free. I went this year with a low budget and believe I have walked away with some invaluable wisdom and fantastic ideas for current and future projects. I would highly recommend that if you are wanting to be a writer of any kind, novel or game, this is a fantastic place to learn. In upcoming blogs I intend to discuss further what I learned during the festival.

Every year the Brisbane Writer’s Festival is different, of course. This year I took part in…

Story +

This was a two day event which had a number of speakers, all of whom are highly acclaimed in their fields, and also gave an opportunity for the participants to take part in some workshops and discussions with these professionals. On the first day the speakers were Jeffrey Yohalem, Christian Fonnesbech, Greg Broadmore, Christy Dena, Richard Wetzel, Sue Swinburne, Simon Groth, and Connor Linehan. The second day speakers were Richard Nash, Joanna Ellis, Mike Jones, Lauren Beukes, Malcolm Neil, Greg Broadmore, Jason Nelson and Tom Uglow. I found this event invaluable. I learnt a great deal and was very inspired and energised to create and succeed in writing.

Madness, Melancholia, and Creativity

An hour long panel discussion about the creative person and how madness and melancholia are sometimes attributed to being a part of the creative process. The panellists were Kate Richards, David Malouf, and Ellen van Neerven.

To be honest, I was greatly disappointed by this event. I expected a great deal deeper discussion about the connection between creativity and certain mental illnesses such as depression, considering a number of greats, living and passed, have some of these issues. Instead, the panellists discussed their work and briefly brushed on what melancholia is and how it is sometimes useful to the creative process. Considering I missed out on the last workshop and discussion event in Story + to see this, I was very disappointed.


An hour and a half long panel discussing Dr Who, why we love the show so much and what truly bothers us about it. The panellists were Ben McKenzie, Sean Williams, Lauren Beukes, and Damon Young. As a Dr Who fan, I greatly enjoyed this panel. It was fascinating to hear from the panellists and even though they all disliked my Doctor, David Tennant. It was a deep discussion that tried to look into what makes the show so great, but also very funny.

In the ‘Burbs: Trudi Canavan

An hour length interview and question and answers session with Trudi Canavan, author best known for her Black Magician Trilogy. This session was fantastic, as I am a fan of the Black Magician Trilogy, and the discussion also delved into some depth about magic and developing your own worlds. I found that a lot of my personal ideas on how to approach world building were supported, and I also learnt some great advice on the writing process. Trudi is a lovely and approachable person, which of course made the experience so much more pleasant.

Vision Writers Open Session

This was an opportunity to sit in on a famous local writer’s group, Vision Writers, session and see how they run the event. I found this very informative, as I have attempted to start my own writer’s group a few times. Perhaps my next attempt will be more successful.

Broken Monsters: In Conversation with Lauren Beukes

A fascinating session with the writer Lauren Beukes about her book Broken Monsters. I found the insight into her writing and researching process very interesting. The depth into which her research goes was insightful. I will be taking on board hints on research in my future work.

Laws of Magic

A wonderful panel discussion on magical world building, specifically looking at setting up your own magical system. The panelists were Trudi Canavan, Kirilee Barker, Rjurik Davidson and Laini Taylor. The panel was informative and inspirational.

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