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Melbourne Writers Festival
43 minutes | Jun 4, 2021
Clare Bowditch: Your Own Kind of Girl
Your Own Kind of Girl is the wise, big-hearted and startlingly candid memoir from the multi-talented Clare Bowditch. Told with brutal honesty and playful humour, this book captures the triumphs and tragedies as well as the loves and losses that shaped her life and allowed her to find a sense of her own place in her story. Join one of Australia’s best-loved storytellers as she discusses her memoir and writing journey. With Jess McGuire. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
44 minutes | Apr 1, 2021
Kevin Kwan: Sex and Vanity
Crazy Rich Asians author Kevin Kwan is back with an intoxicating new story of love, lust, and the impossibly gilded lives of the elite, that flits from the sun-drenched isle of Capri to the grandeur of the Hamptons. Sex and Vanity is both escapist love story and a witty exploration of Asian-American identity. Join Kwan for a lively discussion on fame, fiction, and the Crazy Rich Asians phenomenon. With Beverley Wang. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
49 minutes | Apr 1, 2021
Megha Majumdar: A Burning
In this propulsive and mesmerising debut, A Burning, a young Muslim woman’s Facebook post lands her in jail on terrorism charges—and the story that follows is a vivid portrait of contemporary India’s social and political complexities. Join author Megha Majumdar for a discussion of power, nationalism, corruption and justice in a work that is both gripping literary thriller and compassionate social commentary. With Roanna Gonsalves. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
43 minutes | Mar 16, 2021
Charlotte McConaghy: The Last Migration
The Last Migration is a haunting love letter to the natural world, to the wild places and creatures threatened by climate change. It’s also a profoundly observed story of one young woman’s quest to bear witness to the migration of the world’s last remaining flock of Arctic terns. Join author Charlotte McConaghy for an insight into what has been hailed as 'an astounding meditation on love, trauma, and the cost of survival'. With Nadia Bailey. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
44 minutes | Mar 7, 2021
Casey McQuiston: Red, White and Royal Blue
Casey McQuiston loves stories with big, beating hearts. Her bestselling novel, Red, White & Royal Blue is a delicious, frothy, very queer romantic comedy, and also one of the sharpest books you’ll read all year. The US author sits down with Will Kostakis to talk about why we need escapism, the pure joy of the rom-com, and what it’s like when your debut novel goes viral. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
44 minutes | Mar 7, 2021
Mikki Kendall: Hood Feminism
‘Real feminism (if such a thing can be defined) isn't going to be found in replicating racist, transphobic, homophobic, ableist, or classist norms,’ writes Mikki Kendall in Hood Feminism. In this session, author and cultural critic Kendall discusses how mainstream feminism fails to consider how race, class, sexual orientation, and ability intersect with gender—and offers practical guidance on how we can do the work to enact meaningful change. With Santilla Chingaipe. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
43 minutes | Feb 16, 2021
Readings YA Prize: Lisa Fuller
Lisa Fuller, a Wuilli Wuilli woman and descendent of Gooreng Gooreng and Wakka Wakka peoples, weaves her culture and spirituality into her storytelling. Her new book Ghost Bird is a page-turning thriller about a girl’s search for her missing twin, and was recently named the winner of the Readings YA Prize 2020. Fuller sits down to discuss her action-packed novel, her writing process, and the importance of First Nations Australian representation in YA stories. With Amie Kaufman. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
36 minutes | Feb 16, 2021
An Evening with Elizabeth Strout
No one observes the beauty of ordinary lives quite as astutely as Elizabeth Strout. Ten years after she won a Pulitzer Prize for Olive Kitteridge, she has returned to small-town Maine—and her flawed, cantankerous and much loved heroine—in the delightful Olive, Again. The master storyteller sits down to discuss her career, her craft, and what compelled her to revisit Olive after all these years. With Kate Torney. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
47 minutes | Feb 16, 2021
Victoria Hannan: Kokomo
Winner of the 2019 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript, Kokomo is the superbly written debut from Melbourne-based author Victoria Hannan. Described as ‘a disarmingly profound novel about the violence and the softness of navigating the world as a young woman’, Kokomo is both tender and fierce, heartbreaking and funny, and announces a brilliant new voice in Australian fiction. With Ronnie Scott. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
46 minutes | Feb 2, 2021
The Language of Animals
What would happen if we could understand what animals were saying? Jean McKay (The Animals in That Country), Chris Flynn (Mammoth) and Erin Hortle (The Octopus and I) have each explored this question in their latest books—with fascinating results. Harnessing both the surreal and the serious, these works pose inventive and urgent questions about our place in the world and what it means to be human. With Elizabeth McCarthy. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
46 minutes | Feb 2, 2021
Jing-Jing Lee: How We Disappeared
At once an enthralling family mystery and a meticulously-researched exposé of a dark chapter of history, How We Disappeared bears unflinching testimony to the experience of Singaporean ‘comfort women’ during World War II. Join Jing-Jing Lee as she discusses her powerful and elegiac debut novel, which has been hailed as an ‘unforgettable image of how women were silenced and disappeared by both war and culture’. With Adolfo Aranjuez. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
47 minutes | Feb 2, 2021
Michael Christie: Greenwood
Genealogy isn't a simple story,’ says Michael Christie. ‘In my own personal life and experience, families are built much more than they are born.‘ A novel that reckons with legacy, inheritance, nature and sacrifice, Greenwood reveals layer by layer one family’s secrets—and the forest that binds them across generations. Christie has constructed a time-hopping, world-spanning, page-turning family saga that’s as intricately constructed as the rings of a tree. With Sophie Cunningham. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
57 minutes | Jan 21, 2021
Patrick Radden Keefe: Following the Evidence
Patrick Radden Keefe (Say Nothing) takes complicated histories and transforms them into riveting works of narrative journalism—whether a deep-dive podcast into the alleged CIA origins of a 90s power ballad or a sweeping, switchblade-sharp account of the 1972 disappearance of Jean McConville in Northern Ireland. Join Radden Keefe as he reflects on a lifetime of following the evidence, and the fascinating, compelling, and sometimes outlandish stories he’s uncovered along the way. With Raf Epstein Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
55 minutes | Jan 21, 2021
Anne Enright in Conversation
Anne Enright’s new novel Actress is a beguiling tale of fame, creativity, courage, survival, and the troubled love between a magnetic, capricious mother and the daughter who’s unable to escape her long shadow. Here, Enright sits down to discuss her funny, unsentimental and shrewdly observed new book—and delves into her craft, the writer’s life, and her brilliant career. With Gail Jones. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
45 minutes | Jan 19, 2021
Brit Bennett: The Vanishing Half
Stella and Desiree, identical twin sisters, run away from their small southern town in search of self-determined futures. Both light-skinned Black women, their lives take strikingly divergent paths as one passes as white, while the other marries ‘the darkest man she could find’. Brit Bennett sits down to discuss The Vanishing Half, an expansive, multi-generational saga that dramatically exposes racial inequality and the emotional stakes of identity. With Areej Nur. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
53 minutes | Jan 13, 2021
A Brighter Future
Everywhere we look, we’re faced with dire predictions about the future of the planet. How can coming from a place of hope give us the tools we need to create a better, fairer and more equitable world? Join Damon Gameau (2040: A Handbook for the Regeneration) and Jess Scully (Glimpses of Utopia) as they discuss the importance of optimism in creating concrete solutions for a more sustainable future. With Connor Tomas O'Brien. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
69 minutes | Dec 27, 2020
Becky Manawatu: Auē
Written by Ngāi Tahu author and journalist Becky Manawatu, Auē is a work of gritty, social realist fiction centring on the lives of orphaned brothers: eight-year-old Arama and teenager Taukiri. Dealing with themes of domestic violence, gang culture, curdled masculinity and fractured families, this award-winning debut from a uniquely New Zealand voice captures remarkable insights into the minds of children and young men. Join Manawatu in conversation with Tara June Winch. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
61 minutes | Dec 17, 2020
In Which Two Friends Discuss Reading
Books are often seen simply as a source of diversion and pleasure. But they are more than that. They can offer not an escape from real life, but a richer engagement with the business of living. Two great readers—Charlotte Wood (The Weekend) and Tegan Bennett Daylight (The Details)—sit down to discuss how they find comfort, refuge and power in both reading books and writing them. With Nicole Abadee. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
49 minutes | Dec 9, 2020
A Touch of Magic
‘The universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper,’ Eden Phillpotts once wrote. Robbie Arnott and Jan Carson have both written novels that bring that magic to the fore—while still being grounded in the familiar world—in The Rain Heron and The Fire Starters respectively. The authors sit down to discuss magic, meaning, and why sometimes the only proper response to reality is to disregard it. With Angela Meyer. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
61 minutes | Dec 9, 2020
MWF Gala: Are You Paying Attention?
Six of Australia’s most clear-eyed, insightful writers—2020 Stella Prize–winner Jess Hill; actor and screenwriter Michelle Law; writer and founding editor of Liminal magazine Leah Jing McIntosh; award-winning novelist Favel Parrett; Queensland Literary Award–winning poet Ellen van Neerven; and award-winning poet and scholar Alison Whittaker—deliver addresses that explore, interrogate and challenge what holds our attention, what fails to, and why. Join us for an unmissable gala event hosted by Jamila Rizvi. Funded by the Victorian Government through Women Victoria Content Warning: Contains discussions about family violence. Recorded for MWF Digital in 2020.
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