2017 St Albans Writers’ Festival

The St Albans Writers’ Festival attracts top writers from across the country, as well as hundreds of people who are both local to the Hawkesbury and from outside the area each year. The 2017 festival will be held from Friday, 8 September to Sunday, 10 September and Hawkesbury City Council is a proud sponsor of the event.

This year’s theme of ‘Escape and Explore’ will transform St Albans Village. The festival precinct includes the historic St Albans Church, the Settlers Arms Inn, and the School of the Arts Hall. There will also be marquees, a fire and hay bales in the St Albans Reserve to create a festival hub.

Some of the writers attending include Tom Keneally, Hugh Mackay, Stan Grant, George Gittoes, Tom Griffiths, David Hunt, Mark Tedeschi QC, Gil Jones, Helen Garner, and Bernadette Brennan. There will also be an opportunity to meet established writers Kathryn Heyman and Melina Marchetta, and new writers Melanie Joosten and Rachel Leary.

Festival goers will be able to discussimmigration policy with Madeline Gleeson, climate change with Jane Abbott, or listen to the award winning Fiona McFarlane, Roanna Gonsalves and Isabelle Li read short stories around the campfire. Attendees will be able to delve into the relationships between famous artists with Sebastian Smee, and between mothers and daughters with Jane Caro, Caroline Baum, Susan Wyndham and Nikki Gemmell.

By coming along, encounter journalists Michael Brissenden and Tony Jones, or listen to Director George Miller introduce his 2016 Academy award-winning ‘Mad Max: FuryRoad’.Cooking powerhouse Simmone Logue will cater the entire festival weekend, including a three coursedinner with the Writers.

Festival organisers Catherine du Peloux Menagé, Myra Fox, Jonathan Nolan, and Colleen Navin, say that there are many highlights but one is the informal round table ‘Meet the Author’ sessions over a coffee.

Other special events include:

  • Tony Jones will deliver the Opening Address about the festival’s theme ‘Escape and Explore’.
  • Col Lyons, Wiradguri man and didgeridoo player, will present the Welcome to Country smoking ceremony at the Macdonald riverbed on Saturday morning
  • The Settlers Arms Inn will serve an authentic 1836 Dinner, curated by resident gastronomer at Sydney Living Museums Jacqui Newling.

In partnership with St Albans Writers’ Festival, Hawkesbury Library Service, will run a Getting Published workshop for all aspiring authors on Saturday, 26 August, from 10am to midday in Windsor.

Published writer and Editor, Nigel Bartlett will provide aspiring authors with practical advice on getting published; how the publishing industry works, agents, how to make submissions and the value of writers groups and networking. His debut novel, King of the Road, was published by Penguin Random House in 2015 and he is currently working on his next novel.  The workshop is $30, payable at time of booking.  Bookings are essential via www.hawkesburylibrary.eventbrite.com or phone (02) 4560 4460.

Mayor of Hawkesbury, Councillor Mary Lyons-Buckett said that Council is proud to be a sponsor of the Festival. “The Festival is now in its third year and has grown from a book swap to a successful community event. The Festival brings hundreds of visitors to the historic village of St Albans, which is not only important for businesses, but the town is also activated with excitement, entertainment, culture and sharing of knowledge.

“I am looking forward to attending one of the finest events the Hawkesbury has to offer,” she added

St Albans Festival tickets cost:

$120 for an All Day Pass (5 writers’ sessions)

$200 for a Weekend Pass (10 writers’ sessions)

Special Event tickets sold separately

Don’t miss out on purchasing your ticket. For more information and to buy tickets to the St Albans Festival, visit  here

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