Emerging Writers’ Festival Launch: Halfway Between the Gutter and the Stars
Oscar Wilde noted, ‘We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars’. But what about, as Fatboy Slim sagely pointed out, that rare air in between?
The Emerging Writers’ Festival (EWF) launches its 2016 program with four tales of failed ambitions. Each of these writers will reveal a time they have sought success, and share whether failure stoked their ambition.
The evening will reveal a packed program of events where Australia’s emerging talent takes to the stage and wows audiences, as well as unique professional development opportunities that cover all aspects of being a writer in 2016. Each year EWF brings writers, editors, publishers and performers together with readers for a festival that is an essential part of Australia’s literary calendar.
Hosted by Emerging Writers’ Festival director Michaela McGuire, with Brodie Lancaster, Rajith Savanadasa, Laura Davis and Emma Marie Jones.
Laura Davis is a stand-up comedian and television host known for her peculiar style – riding the line between charming and challenging. Recently winning awards for Best Comedy at Melbourne Fringe and Best Independent Show at Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Laura has been earning praise and acclaim for the last eight years, and toured the country with the industry's finest.
Emma Marie Jones is a Melbourne-based writer, 2015 Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellow and 2016 Felix Meyer Scholar. She is the author of Something To Be Tiptoed Around, a work shortlisted for the Scribe Nonfiction Prize for Young Writers in 2015 and due for release by Grattan Street Press in 2018. Emma’s work can be found in journals The Lifted Brow, Meanjin, Seizure and others. She is currently working on her first novel.
Michaela McGuire is the Director of the Emerging Writers Festival. She is the author of Last Bets: A true story of gambling, morality, and the law, the Penguin Special A Story of Grief and Apply Within: Stories of Career Sabotage. Her journalism has appeared in the Monthly, the Saturday Paper and Good Weekend and she has worked as a columnist for the Saturday Age and QWeekend. She co-curates and hosts the bestselling literary salon Women of Letters.
Brodie Lancaster is a critic and editor based in Melbourne. From 2012 to 2017 she was the editor of Filmme Fatales, a print zine about the places where film and feminism intersect. She has contributed writing to publications including Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Rookie and New York magazine. Her first book, a pop culture memoir called No Way! Okay, Fine was published by Hachette in 2017.
Rajith Savanadasa was born in Sri Lanka. He runs Open City Stories, a website documenting the lives of a group of asylum seekers in Melbourne. Rajith was shortlisted for the Asia-Europe Foundation short story prize in 2013, the Fish Publishing short story prize in 2013 and received a Wheeler Centre Hotdesk Fellowship in 2014. His debut novel, Ruins, will be published by Hachette Australia in 2016.