Peter Carey

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What the papers are saying today about books

“The women who led us so magnificently into our own modernist age in Australian literature are lost to time,” argues Natascha Robinson in The Australian. And this means that fine authors like Eleanor Dark, Stella Miles Franklin, Katherine Prichard and Rosa Praed are under-appreciated, if known at all. Read the full article.

Steve Romei argues that Peter Carey “under appreciated” Amnesia may be Australia’s best hope for the upcoming Man Booker Prize long list. And he’s got some tips on who else might be there.

Book or Kindle? There’s no method in the madness

free-vector-person-reading-book-clip-art_110276_Person_Reading_Book_clip_art_hightWhen to Kindle and when not to Kindle, that is still the question. In a touching article in the New York Times recently, Nick Bilton wrote about how, after the death of his mother, he found he was “bound in spirit and print” to her through her love of books. “She spoke passionately about being able to smell the pages of a print book as you read, to feel the edges of a hardcover in your hands,” Bilton wrote. “And that the notes left inside by the previous reader (often my mother) could pause time.” He describes how she gathered a library of more than 3,000 books and scoffed at his embrace of the Kindle.

That was me, not all that long ago. Books were king. However, after a 

Counting the days to Sydney Writers Festival

PileofBooksAs with travel, a great deal of the pleasure of book festivals lies in the planning. Hours can be whiled away pouring over brochures or web sites, drawing up timelines and bemoaning a clash of favorites. And as the almost final decisions take place there is that delightful frisson of anticipated pleasure followed by a flurry of preparatory reading.

Sydney Writers Festival, which kicks off next week, has grown from a rather modest, largely parochial affair, to a weeklong extravaganza with such variety of offerings that have earned it an international reputation. Although there are sessions spread around the city the main venue is the Walsh Bay precinct with its awesome outlook over Sydney Harbour. There is a constellation of internationally recognised guests from Australia and

Can you actually teach someone to write or is it a question of talent?

Image 1Is creative writing a natural talent or can it be taught? Other artistic endeavours, such as painting, dance and film-making are all available at universities or colleges of further education resulting in qualifications like bachelor of fine arts or bachelor of visual arts. Aushor and teacher Tegan Bennett Daylight considers the rise of the creative writing class in an article in the books section of the current The Weekend Australian.

She says that one of the most common problems emerging from the creative writing program is a “kind of flatness; a sameness that results in what American poet Donald Hall called McPoems and McStories.” With a good teacher, she says, that’s easily tackled. “A good teacher of writing won’t congratulate (the) student on his fluency, although she rewards him with decent marks for competency with the language. A good teacher should

Byron Bay Writers’ Festival

You know you’ve got the makings of a good Writers’ Festival when you realise that you aren’t going to be able to fit in all the sessions you want to attend. Byron Bay Writers’ Festival is taking place in the specially erected ocean-side tent compound from Friday 2nd August to Sunday…


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