NYWF (Thu + Fri)

NYWF was deliriously wonderful.

Despite having more responsibility, I felt more relaxed this year. I was nervous about my events but I knew what to expect of the festival. I knew from last year that it would be INTENSE so I scheduled plenty of 'me time', ate regularly and importantly, gave up on trying to see everything.

(Second year and a veteran...)

Thursday 29 September

Wandered down to the Ocean Baths to clear my mind and draw strength for the days ahead. The horizon flickered with lightning. It is good to be reminded of one's insignificance. 

Finished with Allowed on Timeline: A Slide Night (Elizabeth Flux and Hera Lindsay Bird: hilarious) and Late Night Readings: The Minotaur Under My Bed

Omar Sakr's poetry and voice are out. of. this. world. His essay on sexuality, family and homelessness in Kill Your Darlings is also incredible.

Friday 30 September

Met Chloe and Marlee (fellow panellists) for breakfast. I talk about Mum as she is the audience I most worry about (her reading my blog, her reaction to my writing, potentially hurting her). A few people mention afterwards that they are glad we spoke about our mothers. I am relieved.
It's like we carry a Babushka doll of places with us - where we've been, where we're going.
- Alice Robinson (Writerly Landscapes) -
Photo: Louise Jaques
Photo: Louise Jaques
There are three attendees at my programming workshop but they all want to be there. We finish early so I make it to a panel of writers from the western suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne.
If I do my job as a story-teller, it'll break stereotypes rather than reinforce them.
- Omar Sakr (Go West: Finding Voice) -
As someone who grew up in Werribee, this panel is important to me. I am from 'the west' yet do not lay claim to being a 'west writer', as much as I want to. I am a 'Canberra writer', for now. (Shout-out to the brilliant Footscray Community Arts Centre and ACT Writers Centre xo)

My friends and I struggle to find a place for dinner so end up squeezing into Speech Night to see our favourite writers (Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen, Omar Musa and Hera again!) read.

I have followed Giselle's writing since last year's festival. She is an awesome person who writes honestly about feminism, pop culture, sex, race, relationships and mental health. Trailblazer.

Instant noodles for dinner, then Late Night Readings: Oh! The Places You'll Go

It's the second time I've heard Madeleine Laing read (previously at Noted) and she is just as effortlessly cool. Self-aware yet unpretentious. Love. Madeleine strikes a chord because she, like Jean Hannah Edelstein, reminds me that it is ok (read: not selfish) to write about oneself...

(to be continued)

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