Meet the

Authors & Presenters



2019 Festival Authors & Presenters

The 2019 Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival showcases an array of storytelling talent. With almost 60 writers, journalists, illustrators and presenters we invite readers to join writers as we hear wild, weird and wonderful stories.

Meet the

Authors and Guest Speakers



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JoanArakkal


Joan

Arakkal

Dr Joan Arakkal is an orthopaedic surgeon who grew up and trained in India, before moving to the UK where she was admitted as a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons. She later migrated to Australia and now lives in Perth. Slice Girls is her first book.

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Jakob Boyd


Jakob

Boyd

Jakob Boyd is a poet, organiser and indi-publisher who runs a myriad of grassroots projects in Perth’s art scene and has performed for events, festivals and theatre around Australia.

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Cristy Burne


Cristy

Burne

Cristy Burne is a children’s author and science writer. Her latest books are To the Lighthouse, Off the Track and Zeroes and Ones: The geeks, heroes and hackers who changed history.

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Fiona Burrows


Fiona

Burrows

Fiona Burrows is an emerging author-illustrator from Perth, WA. She is passionate about children’s literature, and her first three picturebooks will be published in 2019 (with more to follow!).


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Liz Byrski


Liz

Byrski

Liz Byrski is a novelist, non-fiction writer, former journalist and ABC broadcaster, with more than fifty years’ experience in the British and Australian media. She is the author of ten bestselling novels, including her most recent release, A Month of Sundays.

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Image: Miles Lowry

Amanda Curtin


Amanda

Curtin

Amanda Curtin is the author of novels Elemental and The Sinkings, and short story collection Inherited. Her new title, a work of narrative non-fiction, is Kathleen O’Connor of Paris.


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Minnie Darke


Minnie

Darke

Minnie Darke – Gemini with Virgo Rising, Scrabble cutthroat and knitter, lover of books, freshly sharpened pencils and Russian Caravan tea – wrote the book Star-crossed to amuse herself and to entertain you.

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Tom de Souza


Tom

de Souza

Tom de Souza tells stories. He works as a freelance journalist and writer, seeking personal and professional freedom through a different kind of life along the road less travelled.



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Image: Nic Duncan

Sarah Drummond


Sarah

Drummond

Sarah authored the commercial fishing memoir Salt Story and her second book The Sound is a fictional take on a sealing gang journeying from Van Diemens Land to Albany in 1825.


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Pip Drysdale


Pip

Drysdale

Pip Drysdale is a writer, actor and musician. The Sunday Girl is her first novel and she is working on a second.


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Christina Fernandes


Christina

Fernandes

Christina Fernandes is a Senior Lecturer in Social Work at Curtin University. Christina has worked in the areas of family and domestic violence, consumer involvement in health and refugee settlement and her research interests focus on caring and gender.

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Image: Gaby Waldek

Anna Funder


Anna

Funder

Anna Funder is one of Australia’s most acclaimed and awarded writers. Her non-fiction work Stasiland, hailed as ‘a masterpiece’, was awarded the Samuel Johnson Prize. Her novel All That I Am won the Miles Franklin and many other prizes. Both books have been published in over 24 countries.


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Maddie Godfrey


Maddie

Godfrey

Maddie Godfrey is a writer, poet and educator who aims to facilitate compassionate conversations about social issues. At 23, they have performed poetry at The Sydney Opera House, The Royal Albert Hall, St Paul’s Cathedral (London) and Glastonbury Festival (2017).

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Germaine Greer


Germaine

Greer

Germaine Greer is an Australian writer, academic, journalist and scholar of early modern English literature, widely regarded as one of the most significant feminist voices of the later 20th century.

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Image: Alex Ellinghausen

Chris Hammer


Chris

Hammer

Chris Hammer was a journalist for more than 30 years, covering Australian federal politics and international affairs.  His first book The River was the recipient of the ACT Book of the Year Award and was shortlisted for the Walkley Book Award and the Manning Clark House National Cultural Award. He lives in Canberra.

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Lisa Harvey-Smith


Lisa

Harvey-Smith

Professor Lisa Harvey-Smith is an award-winning astrophysicist, presenter of ABC television’s ‘Stargazing Live’ and author of When Galaxies Collide (Melbourne University Publishing). She is the Australian Government’s Women in STEM Ambassador.


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Tanya Heaslip


Tanya

Heaslip

Tanya is a lawyer from outback Australia, who lived in Margaret River, and while there wrote her memoir of life in Prague, set four years after the Berlin Wall fell.


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S.Hill & T.Pushman


Sandra & Tracie Pushman

Hill

Sandra is a Yorga (woman) of the Pibulmun people of the South-West and is a Wadandi Elder and Custodian. A professional artist of 26 years, Sandra’s work celebrates personal and cultural identity. “My art is about educating others”. Sandra and her daughter Tracie Pushman will share their cultural journey ‘Coming Home’.

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Kylie Howarth


Kylie

Howarth

Kylie Howarth is an award-winning, internationally published children’s author-illustrator from Western Australia. She not only draws inspiration from her underwater travels but also her own two fish-kids who are ocean explorers too.

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Robert Jeffreys


Robert

Jeffreys

Robert Jeffreys has worked as an actor, teacher, builder, labourer, cleaner, real estate agent, personal security agent and playwright. Robert’s debut novel, Man at the Window, is the first in the Detective Cardilini series, set in 1960s Western Australia.


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Josh Langley


Josh

Langley

After failing high school twice, Josh Langley went onto become an award-winning radio copywriter and award-winning children’s author. His quirky and inspirational books have inspired thousands of people around the world.

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Image: Sam Cooper

Michael Leunig


Michael

Leunig

Michael Leunig’s work spans more than forty years and often explores politics, human folly, spirituality and the innocent and sacred personal world in all of us.


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Elizabeth Lewis


Elizabeth

Lewis

Elizabeth Lewis is the Chairperson of the KSP Writers’ Centre in Greenmount WA; a welcoming community supporting writers everywhere. She is a published poet, reviewer, editor and teacher of poetry workshops.


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Andy Macleod


Andy

Macleod

Andy Macleod is a writer, poet and thinker. His poems have been published in two non-fiction books and several online journals. He’s studying a BA at ECU, majoring in Literature and Writing.



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James Massola


James

Massola

James Massola is the South-east Asian correspondent for Fairfax Media. He was previously chief political correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. He was on the ground at Tham Luang cave for the rescue operation.

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Rachel McEleney


Rachel

McEleney

Rachel McEleney lived in several countries before settling in Australia’s South West. She is a creative writing PhD candidate at Edith Cowan University’s Southwest campus. Her short stories and poetry have been published in several anthologies.

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Image: Tessa Ross

William McInnes


William

McInnes

William McInnes is one of Australia’s most popular writers and actors. His books include the bestselling memoirs A Man’s Got to Have a Hobby and That’d Be Right. His latest book is Fatherhood.

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Susan Midalia


Susan

Midalia

Susan Midalia is the author of three collections of short stories, all shortlisted for major national literary awards. Her novel The Art of Persuasion (2018) was published to critical acclaim.


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Jodie Moffat


Jodie

Moffat

Jodie Moffat co-edited Women of a Certain Age. She works as a generalist solicitor with a community legal service and is the 2019 Greens federal candidate for the Canning electorate.

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Ian Mutch


Ian

Mutch

Ian Mutch is an Australian contemporary artist and storyteller, exploring beauty through characters, nature and details. He has recently written and illustrated a children’s book titled More and More and More.

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Saoirse Nash


Saoirse

Nash

Saoirse Nash is a performance poet/freelance gig organiser/exiled queen. She once started an anarchist collective with regency author Jane Austen, having discovered the meaning of life in the 27th Century through a series of cat related mishaps.

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Catherine Noske


Catherine

Noske

Catherine Noske is a lecturer in Creative Writing and editor of Westerly at the University of Western Australia. Her research focuses on contemporary Australian place-making. Her first novel is forthcoming with Picador.


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Jesse Oliver


Jesse

Oliver

Jesse Oliver is a writer, educator and Australian Poetry Slam Champion. Jesse’s work highlights the strength in vulnerability, exploring his lived experiences of homelessness, gender transition and mental illness.

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Ian Parmenter


Ian

Parmenter

Ian Parmenter is a noted food, wine and travel writer, and broadcaster; the founding Festival Director of Tasting Australia; and the former presenter/producer of the award-winning ABCTV series Consuming Passions.

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Rachel Robertson


Rachel

Robertson

Rachel Robertson teaches at Curtin University. Rachel’s research interests include Australian literature, feminist maternal studies, life writing and critical disability studies. Her memoir, Reaching One Thousand, was published in 2012.

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Kim Scott


Kim

Scott

Kim Scott is one of Australia’s foremost authors, two-times winner of the Miles Franklin and author of the award-winning novels Taboo, That Deadman Dance, and Benang. He lives in Perth.


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Kit Scriven


Kit

Scriven

Kit Scriven has been published in Island and short story anthologies. He won the Olga Master Short Story Award in 2016 and 2017, and the SALA Short Story Prize in 2016. He has been highly commended or shortlisted in several other short story competitions.

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Holden Sheppard


Holden

Sheppard

Holden Sheppard is an award-winning Young Adult author. His novel Invisible Boys won the 2018 City of Fremantle T.A.G. Hungerford Award. His work has appeared in Griffith Review, page seventeen and Indigo Journal.

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Gregory Smith


Gregory

Smith

The odds were against him from the start. Dr Gregory P. Smith is a Forgotten Australian diagnosed as a ‘sociopath’ with dull to mid-range intelligence as a teenager. He now has a PhD.

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Susan Sullivan


Susan

Sullivan

Susan Laura Sullivan co-edited Women of a Certain Age. She writes fiction, poetry and essays, and currently lives in Japan. In 2012 she was shortlisted for the T.A.G. Hungerford Award.


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Lisa Walker


Lisa

Walker

Lisa is the author of five novels and an ABC radio play. Her most recent works are a YA coming-of-age story Paris Syndrome and a climate change comedy Melt.

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Image: Bleddyn Butcher

Dave Warner


Dave

Warner

Named by Bob Dylan as one of his favourite Australian musicians, Dave Warner is also an award-winning novelist (Ned Kelly best crime fiction, WA Premier’s Award literature) who writes crime fiction, children’s novels, screenplays, stage musicals and non-fiction books.

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Image: Wayne Webb

Iszaac Webb


Iszaac

Webb

Iszaac Webb is a Wadandi / Pibulmun Cultural Custodian and Undalup Association Board Chairperson. The Wadandi people have a long association with the environment of the South West and its natural resources, utilising the Country’s natural resources according to our lore.




Meet the

Presenters



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Tabetha Beggs


Tabetha

Beggs

Tabetha is the CEO of the Kalamunda Chamber of Commerce, the current Chairwoman of writingWA and the former Chairwoman of the Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre in Greenmount. Tabetha is a published author with short stories published both locally and internationally.

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Allan Boyd


Allan

Boyd

Based in Perth, Allan Boyd (the antipoet) has been delivering performance poetry and organising dynamic poetry arts and music events since 1995.


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Geraldine Doogue


Geraldine

Doogue

Geraldine Doogue AO is a renowned Australian journalist and broadcaster who has carved out an enviable reputation across print, television and radio. She currently presents the ABC Radio National program Saturday Extra and ABC TV’s Compass.

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Margot Edwards


Margot

Edwards

Margaret River writer and editor Margot Edwards is known locally for her collaborative process over the last 30 years in creating colourful stories of place across numerous mediums, including short story, articles and online blogs and community theatre projects.


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Rachel England-Brassy


Rachel

England-Brassy

Rachel is a first-time MC to the Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival stage but is far from a first-time reader, having established in primary school that reading was going to be her job.

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Glynn Greensmith


Glynn

Greensmith

Glynn Greensmith is a lecturer in journalism at Curtin University, and the host of It’s Just Not Cricket on ABC Radio. He has been a journalist, newsreader, producer, and presenter with the ABC since 2005. He has been teaching and researching journalism since 2012.

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James Lush


James

Lush

James started out at the BBC in the UK and has been a regular on ABC Perth over the past 12 years. He’s Founder and Director of Lush the Content Agency.

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Sarah McNeill


Sarah

McNeill

Sarah McNeill is an actor, arts writer, MC and presenter. She is the arts editor for a Perth newspaper, covering theatre, arts, literature, film and food around Perth with interviews, previews and reviews.


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Rosi Moore-Fiander


Rosi

Moore-Fiander

A regular MC on the Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival stage, Rosi also works internationally as a leadership coach to earn the money she needs to satisfy her two constant cravings, namely reading and travelling.

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Rashida Murphy


Rashida

Murphy

Rashida Murphy is a writer and facilitator living in Perth. She is the author of The Historian’s Daughter (UWA Publishing).

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Gillian O’Shaughnessy


Gillian

O’Shaughnessy

Gillian started work at the ABC in 1996 in the newsroom as a cadet reporter, and worked in television, radio and online news and current affairs as a journalist for 15 years. She currently presents the afternoon show on ABC Radio Perth and WA.

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Rosemary Sayer


Rosemary

Sayer

Rosemary Sayer is a writer, researcher and former journalist. Her third book More to the story – conversations with refugees was published in 2015 by Margaret River Press. She is currently undertaking a PhD in life writing at Curtin University. Her research focuses on refugees, collaborative life writing and human rights.


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Nicole Sinclair


Nicole

Sinclair

Nicole Sinclair has a PhD in Creative Writing and her first novel, Bloodlines, was shortlisted for the 2014 TAG Hungerford Award. Nicole’s short fiction and non-fiction has appeared in the Review of Australian Fiction, Westerly, Indigo Journal and Award Winning Australian Writing.


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Will Yeoman


Will

Yeoman

Former Literary Editor and Senior Arts Writer at the West Australian, William Yeoman is now a Travel Journalist with the West Australian and West Travel Club. He continues to write music criticism for Limelight and Gramophone classical music magazines.





Useful information

Voyager Estate was the main venue for the 2019 Readers and Writers Festival. Our exciting feature events and workshops are held at a number of locations in and around Margaret River.

FESTIVAL VENUES


2019 Festival

Workshop Series

For full access to some of the festival’s top writing talents, immerse yourself in the Festival Workshop Series to gain friendly tips and practical experience, whatever your writing passion may be.

WORKSHOPS


2019 Festival

Feature Events

For the ultimate festival experience, book tickets to one or more of these feature events for emerging writers, avid readers and those who enjoy their books served with the region’s best produce.

FEATURE EVENTS