Stories will come alive in Margaret this winter as the 9th annual Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival gears up to be the biggest and best yet. Held from 02-04 June, the festival will feature renowned British comedian, actor, writer and television presenter Michael Palin.

Well known as a member of Monty Python, Michael Palin has appeared in numerous films and has presented eight very successful travel series. Michael has written books to accompany his eight very successful travel series Around the World in 80 Days; Pole to Pole; Full Circle; Hemingway Adventure; Sahara; Himalaya; New Europe and Brazil. He is also the author of a number of children’s stories, the play The Weekend and the novels Hemingway’s Chair and The Truth and has published three volumes of diaries; 1969–1979: The Python Years and 1980-1988: Halfway to Hollywood, and 1988-1998: Travelling to Work.

The festival’s line-up of literary talent also includes one of Australia’s most distinguished and respected journalists Kerry O’Brien. O’Brien has been a journalist for 49 years covering print, television and wire service, as a reporter, feature writer, columnist and foreign correspondent.

Writer, speaker and feminist thinker Clementine Ford will also take the stage to talk about her first book Fight Like A Girl which was an instant bestseller and will later join author, novelist, journalist and social commentator Jane Caro.

Renowned Australian author Robert Drewe, known for his novels, short stories and memoirs will also feature, as will Bruce Pascoe; a Bunurong, Tasmanian and Yuin man whose book Dark Emu, won the Book of the Year and Indigenous Writer’s Prize in the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards.

West Australian talents include award-winning novelist Joan London, writer and broadcaster Ian Parmenter and Nicole Sinclair, whose short stories have won the Down South Writers Competition and whose first novel Bloodlines was shortlisted for the 2014 TAG Hungerford Award.

Festival Director Tanya Perdue said she was ecstatic that Palin would feature as part of the 3 Day event and encouraged festival-goers to get their tickets right away. “We truly have an incredibly strong and diverse line-up of writers coming to Margaret River for this year’s festival”, she said. ”The addition of Michael Palin to an already impressive line-up of authors, journalists, literary icons and rising stars means the festival will be bigger and better than even before.”

The Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival is held at the Margaret River cultural centre where the celebrations will include author talks, panel discussions, Q&A sessions, book signings, free lunch time talks and free activities for children on the weekend in the festival’s storytelling tent.

“The festival is shaping up to be a great celebration of literature and yet another reason for people to visit Australia’s South West. Margaret River in winter, with books, wine, local produce, top accommodation and Michael Palin – it doesn’t get much better than that,” she said.

Tickets to the 2017 Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival are now available for purchase online at www.mrrwfestival.com, by phone 08 9758 7316, or from the Arts Margaret River Box Office, at 51 Wallcliffe Road, Margaret River. The State Government is proud to support the Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival through Tourism WA’s Regional Events Program, made possible by Royalties for Regions.


Image credit: John Swannell