Our long awaited 2nd annual Canberra Writers Festival program is here!!!
We are excited to welcome all of the talented authors to the festival this year and to also share the event with YOU! The experience of hearing your favourite author in one of our iconic National Institutions is something that is unique to the festival and for this we thank all of our Foundation and Festival Partners as well as the ACT Government, as without their generous support the festival would not be possible!
Joining us this year we welcome comic writer and Australian icon, Kathy Lette, international bestselling authors Samantha Shannon (the Bone Season), and Utopia for Realists author Rutger Bregman, alongside Tony Jones and UK Journalist Reni Eddo-Lodge.
Our Festival Chair Allan Behm said “The Canberra Writers Festival team has brought you another fantastic festival — variety, fun, humour, and a few serious moments as well. The festival partner institutions have opened their doors to offer both visitors and native Canberrans a wonderful opportunity to talk, listen, converse, question and generally make the most of what Canberra does best: help build and sustain an engaged and inclusive nation. Power, passion and politics — this is the writers festival for you.”
Our Headlining Talent includes:
- Kathy Lette – writer of cult classic Puberty Blues and a celebrated and outspoken comic writer who has an inimitable take on serious current issues, Kathy is one of the pioneering voices of contemporary feminism. Her newest book, Best Laid Plans, is a riotous yet heartrending novel which tackles the taboo subject of sex for the ‘differently abled’ – and shows us that when it comes to sex, we all have special needs.
- Tracey Spicer – an iconoclast whose TEDx Talk ‘The Lady Stripped Bare’ has been seen by nearly 1.5 million people, Tracey has anchored national news, current affairs and lifestyle programs, and has brought her sassy style to talkback radio. Her ‘full-frontal’ columns appear weekly in metropolitan newspapers and on opinion websites and she is the co-founder and national convenor of Women in Media. Her memoir The Good Girl Stripped Bare has just been released.
- Rutger Bregman – award winning author of four books on history, philosophy and economics and award nominated journalist, his work has been featured in The Washington Post, The Guardian and on the BBC. His latest book, Utopia for Realists, is an idea whose time has come. A visionary manifesto for a disillusioned age, a manifesto to spark debate and inspiration - a manifesto to change the world.
- John Safran – an award-winning documentary-maker of provocative and hilarious takes on race, the media, religion and other issues, John also co-hosted Sunday Night Safran with cranky but beloved Catholic priest, Father Bob Maguire. Depends What You Mean By Extremist, John’s latest book, is a startling, confronting portrait of contemporary Australia. We all think we know what’s going on in our own country, but this larger-than-life, timely, and alarmingly insightful true story will make you think again
- Samantha Shannon – Samantha started writing at the age of fifteen. In 2013 she published The Bone Season, the first in a seven book series. The Mime Order followed in 2015. Both were international bestsellers with the film rights optioned by the Imaginarium Studios and 20th Century Fox. In 2014, she was included on the Evening Standard’s Power 1000 list. The Song Rising is her third novel and was published in March 2017.
- Tony Jones – Australian television news and political journalist, and television presenter, Tony has won pretty much every award an Australian journalist could wish for. During his career he has been host of ABC's Lateline and has reported for Four Corners on ABC as well as Dateline on SBS. In 2008, Tony was appointed as host of ABC's Q&A.
These amazing writers will also be joined by Girl With a Pearl Earring author Tracy Chevalier; award winning young adult fantasy novelist Garth Nix; journalist, political commentator and author George Megalogenis; Walkley Award winner Ian McPhedran; columnist and presenter Jamila Rizvi; social commentator, writer and lecturer Jane Caro; amongst many others.
Appearing at the 2nd annual Canberra Writers Festival:
Allan Gyngell, Amanda Hampson, Amy Gottlieb, Andrew Ford, Andy Martin, Anna Broinowski, Anna Snoekstra, Anne Buist, Bates Gill, Bernadette Schwerdt, Bram Connolly, Cameron & Sam Bloom, Cameron Muir, Catherine Fox, Catherine McCullagh, Chris Masters, Clementine Ford, Clive Hamilton, Dan Bourchier, David Dufty, David Hunt, David Marr, David W. Cameron, Dirk Kurbjuweit, Elizabeth Kostova, Ellie Marney, Eugene Schlusser, Frances Flanagan, Frances Isaac, Frank Bongiorno, Gabrielle Williams, Gareth Evans, Garth Nix, Gary Ramage, George Megalogenis, Gideon Haigh, Gillian Pollack, Graeme Simsion, Graham Wilson, Helen Roe, Hugh Mackay AO, Hugh White, Ian Burnet, Ian McPhedran, Ian Townsend, Jack Heath, Jaclyn Moriarty, James Bradley, James Phelan, Jamila Rizvi, Jane Caro, Jane Rawson, Jean Kittson, Jeff Maynard, Jessica Friedmann, Joan Beaumont, Joanna Savill, John Blaxland, John Safran, Josh Earl, Julia Baird, Kaaron Warren, Karma, Katharine Murphy, Kathy Lette, Katy Gallagher, Laura Tchilinguirian, Laura Tingle, Leah Kaminsky, Linda Jakobson, Linda Tate and Valerie Parv, Louise Milligan, Maggie Alderson, Mark Henshaw, Matthew Evans, Melina Marchetta, Merlinda Bobis, Meredith McKinney, Michael Brissenden, Michael Newtown, Michael Robotham, Michelle Arrow, Nicola Gates, Niki Savva, Nikki Gemmell, One Woman Project, Peter Stanley, Harry Potter Show with Professor Frankie, Rachel Seiffert, Rebecca Huntley, Reni Eddo-Lodge, Richard Fidler, Robert Macklin, Robyn Williams, Rory Medcalf, Samantha Shannon, Sarah Ferguson, Sarah Schmidt, Shireen Morris, Stefan Posthuma-Grbic, Stephanie Buckle, Sulari Gentill, Sunni Overend, Tim Watson-Munro, Tom Frame, Tony Jones, Tracey Spicer, Tracy Chevalier, Troy Bramston, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, Virginia Haussegger, Will Kostakis and Yolande Norris.
The Festival is supported by additional funding from the ACT Government as well as ongoing support from Australia’s national institutions and other supporters including the Australian National University, National Portrait Gallery, National Museum of Australia, Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House, National Library of Australia, National Press Club of Australia, Doma Hotels, 4 National Circuit and ActewAGL. The Canberra Writers Festival also acknowledges the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund for supporting this project.