Bendigo bound

BWFwebI’m thrilled to be a guest at this year’s Bendigo Writers Festival on Sat 10-Sun 11 August 2013.

I have so much to look forward to, from participating on panels with some amazing authors, and attending sessions to listen other amazing authors, to hanging out in that beautiful central Victorian city.

‘I have heard people describe Bendigo as a country town,’ says the narrator in Peter Carey’s Illywhacker. ‘These people have never been to Bendigo and don’t know what they’re talking about. The Town Hall is the equal of anything in Florence; the Law Courts would not look frumpish in Versailles.’ (Thanks to John McPherson for drawing my attention to this gem).

Details of my own panel sessions are as follows:

Crime isn’t what it used to be
Sat 10 August, 1.15-2.15PM
John M Green, Angela Savage and Annie Hauxwell talk with lawyer John McPherson about how far crime fiction has come since Agatha Christie.
Bendigo Bank Theatre, The Capital, 50 View Street, Bendigo
Further information and bookings here.

To understand others
Sun 11 August, 12.00-1.00PM
David Bridie, Angela Savage, Robin de Crespigny and Alice Pung talk with Sue Gillett about the inspiration they draw from other cultures.
The Capital, 50 View Street, Bendigo
Further information and tickets here.

I’m particularly excited (and nervous) about the second of these panels, as I can think of only one other case, back in 2010, where I’ve appeared on a writers festival panel to talk about something other than crime fiction. To share experiences with David Bridie, Robin de Crespigny and Alice Pung about the inspiration we draw from other cultures is a real privilege and rare treat.

In preparation, I’m currently reading de Crespigny’s multi-award winning ‘nonfiction thriller’ The People Smuggler, which is both devastating and utterly engrossing. This book should be compulsory reading for everyone involved in asylum seeker policy, especially those who think any policy can be tough enough to deter people from fleeing the horrors they leave behind.

De Crespigny’s book brings home to me how fortunate I am: my toughest gig is to choose which among the excellent sessions in the program I will attend.

You can download the full festival program here.

About Angela Savage

Angela Savage is a Melbourne writer, who has lived and travelled extensively in Asia. She won the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript, and the Scarlet Stiletto Award short story award. Her latest novel is, Mother of Pearl, published by Transit Lounge. Angela holds a PhD in Creative Writing, is former CEO of Writers Victoria, and currently works as CEO of Public Libraries Victoria.
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8 Responses to Bendigo bound

  1. Don’t be nervous Angela…I’m sure your fellow panelists are similarly excited to be appearing with the talented and insightful Angela Savage… and from experience I can tell you that the Bendigo audiences are truly lovely. Have a wonderful time.


    • angelasavage says:

      Thanks Sulari, though I am truly humbled by the work of my co-panellists. Robin de Crespigny’s book, which has just been shortlisted for a Ned Kelly Award for True Crime is astonishing. I do look forward to the Bendigo audiences.


  2. Margot Kinberg says:

    Angela – It sounds like a wonderful time and I’ll bet you’ll be absolutely great on the panels. I hope you’ll post about your experience.


  3. kathy d. says:

    Congratulations for being asked to be on these two panels. But don’t be nervous. You will be very good at explaining your inspiration by other cultures, given your respect for Thai and other peoples and their histories, religions and customs, which is reflected in the Jayne Keeney books.
    The asylum seekers’ issue is huge, and it certainly is over here. Not only the horrors but the extreme poverty and unemployment plaguing much of the world, despite “globalization,” cause millions to flee every year.
    There is no way that people would leave their children and homelands to find a job thousands of miles away unless they had to do so.
    In the States, it’s getting harder for people to come here when all they want is a job.
    Our common humanity should be the priority in deciding policies.


    • angelasavage says:

      ‘Our common humanity should be the priority in deciding policies.’ Kathy, I couldn’t agree with you more. Sadly, a sense of common humanity is completely missing from the asylum seeker policies of the two major parties in Australia. As Ali Al Jenabi, the narrator of Robin de Crespigny’s remarkable book says, ‘the refugees’ pitiful plight inspires irrational fear’ — and the major parties in Australia are doing their best to exacerbate that fear. I’m both deeply ashamed by my country’s stance on asylum seekers and profoundly grateful to authors like de Crespigny for telling the stories we all need to hear.


  4. Imelda Evans says:

    I’d love to be there, but I have a house full of sickies at the moment and can’t get away. I’m sure you’ll be great though. Best of luck with both presentations, and thanks for the tip about the book.


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