Whether you’re an avid writer, or a beginner looking to find your community, writers festivals are a great way to come together in celebration of all things reading and writing. And this list of the best writers festivals in Australia will help you find the perfect event to match with your interests.
Sydney Writers Festival
Featuring over 400 Australian and international writers, and 80,000 audience members, Sydney Writers Festival is a not-to-be missed experience. Celebrate the power of imagination and storytelling by engaging with conversations, debates and panels starring some of the biggest names on the Australian literary scene. Plus, with ⅓ of the events made free to the public, everyone is able to join in on the excitement. This year, the festival celebrates its 25th anniversary, just another reason to jump right in.
Melbourne Writers festival
Started in 1986, the Melbourne Writers Festival now boasts an audience of 50,000 people every year. With around 10,000 young people participating in their engaging program, it’s also Australia’s biggest literary event for students. The festival supports a diverse range of writers, aiming to foster a strong reading culture by putting the spotlight on the inspiring power of words. Prepare to be inspired, challenged, and provoked over a week of engaging activities.
If you’re looking for fun for the whole family, then the Somerset Storyfest is the perfect place for you. Located in Queensland, this week-long festival kicks off with a ‘prologue party,’ including tons of fair games and activities, as well as a festival bookshop. With workshops for the kids, and literary lunches for the adults, everyone is guaranteed to find something to enjoy in this celebration of all things reading and writing.
National Young Writers Festival
Located in Newcastle, this is a festival made by young writers, for young writers. An annual event, the National Young Writers Festival aims to be accessible for all through a completely free program, and explores ‘writing’ in its broadest sense, including art installations, readings, workshops, and more. This festival is the largest gathering of young writers in the country, allowing youth to share their ideas and hone their creative skills.
BAD Sydney crime writers festival
If you prefer to walk on the dark side, then BAD is the ideal event for you. A morbid festival, it explores the world of crime writing and true-crime, hosting speakers including writers, reporters, detectives and psychologists. As well as their annual festival, they also hold year-round events such as the BAD book club, which discusses the best crime stories from around the world
This speculative fiction festival is held in Canberra, and is a convention for both new and established writers. Holding workshops, panels and competitions, it fosters creativity on a whole new level. This year’s theme is ‘visions of time,’ exploring the future of the speculative fiction industry in this current climate. Plus, Conflux also hosts the Ditmar awards, which recognise achievements in Australian science fiction and the science fiction fandom.
Tasmanian Poetry Festival
The Tasmanian Poetry Festival began in 1985, and is the perfect way to embrace your love for the art of poetry. Devoted to poetry in all its forms, it presents a range of Australian and international poets as they discuss and read their works. If you’re looking for a weekend jam packed with poetry readings, exciting workshops, and poetry slams, this might just be the best place for you. This festival definitely deserves it’s place on the list of the best writers festivals in Australia.
If writing for the big screen is more your thing, click here to read about an Australian screenwriter heading the industry.