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Gerald Murnane


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‘Twenty years ago, when I first arrived on the plains, I kept my eyes open. I looked for anything in the landscape that seemed to hint at some elaborate meaning behind appearances.’

The famous opening lines of Gerald Murnane’s The Plains might describe the author’s own approach to his work as much as that of the story’s unnamed narrator. Murnane, however, has been writing and searching – seeking revelation beyond the surface of things – for much more than 20 years. A perfectionist and cult hero, his career spans more than four decades and 13 books, including 10 strange, masterful novels (Inland, A Million Windows and Border Districts among them).

In recent years, thanks to heightened international press and academic attention, Nobel Prize rumours and some high-profile fans (Teju Cole has described Murnane as a ‘a genius on the level of Beckett’), there’s been a growing appreciation of Murnane’s work in Australia and abroad.

Celebrate the life and work of this remarkable figure in Australian literature as he appears in a rare conversation with Sean O’Beirne.

Readings will be our bookseller at this event.


Gerald Murnane

Gerald Murnane was born in Melbourne in 1939. He is the author of eleven works of fiction, including Tamarisk Row, The Plains, Inland, Barley Patch, A History of Books, A Million Windows, and Border Districts, and a collection of essays, Invisible Yet Enduring Lilacs. He is a recipient of... Read more

Sean O'Beirne

Sean O’Beirne is a bookseller and critic. He grew up in Melbourne’s outer suburbs, and studied arts, law and acting. A Couple of Things Before the End is his first book. 


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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, past and present.