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Readers and writers to connect at Margaret River festival

May 7, 2014 Destination Global No Comments Email Email

Book worms, storytellers and literature lovers are invited to descend upon the Margaret River Region in May for the sixth annual Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival.

The theme of ‘Journeys’ has attracted an impressive line-up of celebrated national and local authors including Joan London, Peter Goldsworthy, Graeme Simsion and Nick Carroll.

unnamedAuthors from a range of genres will participate to talk about everything from genealogy to travel writing, surfing, media panels, graphic novels, science fiction, poetry and publishing.

Festival Coordinator Helen Allan advised the inspiration for the Margaret River festival, which started six years ago, came from the Byron Bay Writers Festival and other literary festivals around Australia.

“Readers and writers festivals are becoming hugely popular in Australia – the first was Adelaide Writers’ Week, which originated in 1960 as part of the Adelaide Arts Festival – and there are now more than 30 literary festivals around Australia which have steadily increased in size and scope since the 1960s,” said Ms Allan.

“Reading and writing are essentially solitary pastimes and professions so literary festivals invite us to close the gap between reader and author, and facilitate engagement and connectivity,” she said.

Augusta Margaret River Tourism Association (AMRTA) CEO Pip Close advised that the festival was a wonderful initiative to foster engagement between readers and writers, and was held at an ideal time of year to boost visitation to the region.

“The Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival comes at a wonderful time of year – May is a perfect time to enjoy the region’s crisp Autumn weather, the vines and trees are changing colour and the Easter crowds have left the region, so it really is the ideal time to get away,” said Ms Close.

“With such an outstanding line-up of talent, combined with the spectacular backdrop of the Margaret River Region – what better excuse than a readers and writers festival to take a short break and head down for the weekend!” she said.

Graphic novelist Justin Randall said he was looking forward to attending the festival as a guest speaker.

“I’m looking forward to heading down south for the Readers & Writers Festival and discussing all things awesome in the world of visual narrative – the world of storytelling within pictures,” said Mr Randall.

This year the festival has been made even more accessible and integrated into the wider community by staging events in various locations around the Shire, and by including many more local businesses including restaurants, the community resource centre and library, the visitor centre and the local TAFE.

The festival runs from May 16 – 18 and will be officially opened on the Friday night, May 16 at a casual cocktail style function which also marks the opening of the annual art exhibition and the announcement of the winner of the Margaret River Short Story Competition.

Ms Allan said festival tickets were selling steadily and she urged people not to leave it to the last minute to secure their spot with a favourite author.

Tickets are available over the counter at the Margaret River Visitor Centre, 100 Bussell Hwy, or online via www.artsmargaretriver.com.

To book accommodation for the festival visit www.margaretriver.com.

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