One of the pleasures of being a book seller is attending the many book and festival launches that occur throughout the year.
Last night was the Launch of the 2017 Sydney Writer’s Festival season. It was also the first time that many of us caught up with the new Artistic Director, Michaela McGuire as well. She impressed us with her humour and laid back charm.
This year’s theme is refuge. Michaela feels that now, more than ever, “readers will be turning to literature as a place of refuge.”
Being able to see the world through someone else’s eyes is one of the enduring functions of literature. It can provide comfort in belonging; wonder and curiosity in diversity and also, at times, shock us out of our complacency.
This is the 20th year of the Sydney Writer’s Festival and they are celebrating with a new look website here. Bookings for the festival opened today, so you can expect teething problems and queues (that’s me saying that, not the organisers!)
I have no doubt that certain talks will book out very quickly. However I have usually been able to attend some of the lesser known talks on the spur of the moment and have often enjoyed these spontaneous events all the more for being unexpected and unplanned.
After the festival is over, Create NSW will take over the Walsh Bay site for a two year redevelopment scheme that will create an arts precinct around Pier 2/3 and Wharf 3/4. Apparently a proper amenities block will be part of the new plan!
Details about the venue for the 2018 and 2019 SWF will be revealed in due course.
Who are you looking forward to seeing at this year’s Festival?