Fresh Fiction at The Wheeler Centre

October 21, 2010

On to some great Aussie authors, who spoke at The Wheeler Centre this Tuesday 19 October as part of Fresh Fiction for the Classroom and Library, our professional learning event for teachers and librarians.

Kate Grenville, Tim Pegler, Lia Hills, Leanne Hall and Steph Bowe discussed their novels and what had inspired them to write. They were joined by English/Literature teacher Lisa McNeice and Viewpoint editor Dr Pam Macintyre, who outlined how the selected texts could be used in the classroom.

Fresh Fiction at The Wheeler Centre, presented by Booked Out and the good folk at The Little Bookroom and Text Publishing

A big thank you to The Little Bookroom and Text Publishing, who we joined forces with for Fresh Fiction. Thanks also to the wonderful selection of teaching staff who made it along, we look forward to seeing you again soon!

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David Suzuki – Matter of Life and Death MIAF

October 21, 2010

Credit: Steven Campbell

David Suzuki, renowned scientist, environmentalist and broadcaster, spoke at Fed Square this Monday 18 October, 2010 for The Wheeler Centre. Lauris and Tanya made it along, here’s a few words on the event:

David Suzuki welcomed packed BMW edge audience on Monday. Many had come as they felt it might be the last visit by this amazing environmentalist and scientist. But his passion, energy and humourous delivery at  74 years old reassured me that we can expect to see him again. It was a reminder to all of the need to put the ‘eco’ back into economics. David received a standing ovation from an adoring crowd, he was feisty, provocative and passionate. Tanya and I were both truly moved by this incredible man.

– Lauris


Ubud Writers Festival 2010

October 21, 2010

Lauris was lucky enough to skip some dodgy Melbourne weather and make her way over to Bali for the Ubud Writers Festival Oct 7-10, 2010. She reports back:

Amid tropical rainstorms, Balinese rice paddies, delicious food , and some stellar international authors – a stimulating and inspirational four days.

Some of the best moments:

  • Listening to Booker winner Anne Enright with Caroline Baum on avoiding the cliches of being Irish
  • Christos Tsiolkas who said his most despairing moments are when he realises that the sword might be mightier than the pen – because there is still so much suffering in the world – but then remembers how much great writers influenced him and so reaffirms his faith in writing
  • Shane Maloney remarking that his hotel could have been a set for a James Bond movie
  • Australians Jon Bauer and Nam Lee spotted zipping through the streets of Ubud on motorbikes

 

Rob with author Cate Kennedy and her daughter Rosie

 

The festival was amazing, it was great to catch up with everyone and every session I made it to was a lot of fun. But perhaps the absolute highlight of Ubud 2010 for me was leaving the opening night party and sharing a cab with the legendary Louis de Bernières! (And yes I did give him a business card…just in case.)

– Lauris


Vic Premier’s Literary Awards 2010 announced

September 29, 2010

That darn Peter Temple is on a roll! Well done to Peter and indeed all of the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards winners for 2010.  A big congrats especially to Kirsty Eagar who won the Prize for Young Adult Fiction for her debut novel Raw Blue.

The Prize for Young Adult Fiction
Raw Blue, Kirsty Eagar, Penguin

Judge’s comments: Raw Blue is a wonderfully assured novel that takes the reader from the stagnant aftermath of trauma to the subtle beginnings of recovery. Carly has dropped out of uni and works a monotonous kitchen job in order to devote the rest of her time to her real passion – surfing. Riding the bright skin of the ocean is where Carly belongs, and is the only place where she can begin to escape what happened to her two years ago at Schoolies. Raw Blue packs an unsentimental punch that is not easily forgotten.

A well-deserved prize for Raw Blue. Right now at the office we’re loving Kirsty’s newest book, Saltwater Vampires.

Here’s the full list of award winners:

The Vance Palmer Prize for Fiction
Truth, Peter Temple, Text Publishing

The Nettie Palmer Prize for Non-fiction
Reading by Moonlight: How Books Saved a Life, Brenda Walker, Penguin

The CJ Dennis Prize for Poetry
Possession, Anna Kerdijk Nicholson, Five Islands Press

The Louis Esson Prize for Drama
And No More Shall We Part, Tom Holloway, A Bit Of Argy Bargy

The Prize for Young Adult Fiction
Raw Blue,
Kirsty Eagar, Penguin

The Alfred Deakin Prize for an Essay Advancing Public Debate
“Seeing Truganini”, David Hansen, Australian Book Review

The Prize for a First Book of History
Becoming African Americans: Black Public Life in Harlem, 1919-1939, Clare Corbould, Harvard University Press

The Prize for Indigenous Writing
Legacy, Larissa Behrendt, University of Queensland Press

The John Curtain Prize for Journalism
Who Killed Mr Ward?, Janine Cohen and Liz Jackson, Four Corners, ABC Television

The Prize for an Unpublished Manuscript by an Emerging Victorian Writer
House of Sticks, Peggy Frew

Head to The Wheeler Centre for the rest of the  judges comments and prize money details.


Andy Griffiths, John Marsden in the blogosphere

September 13, 2010

Tye Cattanach, librarian at Manor Lakes College, has blogged about the Andy event she hosted as part of The Very Bad Book Tour. A short extract:

It goes without saying that Andy Griffiths is an absolute ROCKSTAR and a very nice man!

For over an hour Andy had 670 children and their grownups and teachers in stitches and hanging on his every word.

Read Tye’s full post here – includes photos of the event! Andy is still on tour, heading to Perth tomorrow to do events at Campbell Primary School in Canning Vale and Christ Church Grammar in Claremont.

Meanwhile, John Marsden has written about his appearance at the Nambucca Heads Film Festival for National Film & Sound Archive. The NFSA booked John through us to accompany their screening of Tomorrow When the War Began, which opened the festival. John writes:

We walked into a highly-charged totally-positive vibe at the sold-out Nambucca Heads Cinema and I signed books till I could barely remember how to spell my name.

John’s full post is here. In addition to local schools here in Australia we’re very excited to be sending John to Malaysia later this month, where he’ll be speaking to staff and students at a number of International schools.