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Byron Shire
August 6, 2021

Catchin’ the Writers Festival Train

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Byron Writers Festival 2021 (6–8 August) has revealed a program of more than 150 celebrated authors and commentators, as well as powerful new voices to mark its 25th anniversary.

Festival Director Edwina Johnson says, ‘Now more than ever our world needs writers and stories for healing’.

All aboard the bookworm express – pictured are Adam van Kempen, Anika Ebner, Sarah Ma, Tristan Bancks, Emily Brugman and Shien Chee. Photo Jeff ‘Tickets Please’ Dawson

She says, ‘At the core of our festival is the belief in the power of story as a means to connect, heal and make change. Story provides the framework for understanding. Never more so than when we are faced with the shock of a pandemic that has insisted we learn new ways of being and engaging’.

More than 150 speakers 

The lineup includes Archie Roach, Julia Baird, Richard Flanagan, Judith Lucy, Kate Grenville, Bryan Brown, Marcia Langton, The Betoota Advocate, Alice Pung, Raina MacIntyre, Nevo Zisin, Evelyn Araluen, Dr Norman Swan, Robert Dessaix, Pip William and many more.

‘The festival program features memoirists, poets, medicos, environmentalists, commentators, politicians and artists who together shape narratives of hope, courage and change. Some of the themes examined include loneliness and the importance of cultivating an inner life, satire, Canberra culture, disability and the many ways people experience the world, connection to community, homelands and nature’. 

One panel discussion – the inaugural Mungo Panel – will ask ‘Has the media lost its mojo?’ 

Named in honour of legendary journalist and beloved local, Mungo McCallum, it will be hosted by former ABC Insiders presenter, Barrie Cassidy. He will be joined by Kerry O’Brien, The Saturday Paper’s political correspondent, Karen Middleton and journalist, and Penny Wong biographer, Margaret Simons.  

The festival will be held in the grounds of Elements of Byron Resort and in venues throughout the region. 

Tickets are now on sale at www.byronwritersfestival.com/festival.


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2 COMMENTS

  1. Shame that the Butler St Reserve is not available for parking the car and then catching the Byron Bay Train out to the festival.

  2. This is a good photo with a railway theme…the writers’ express. What a shame that the line doesn’t extend further so that punters could have an alternative form of transport to it than battling the traffic on Ewingsdale Rd. Imagine being able to hop on a train from throughout the region, to arrive directly to the festival venue. No parking problems either.

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