The Next Big Thing

View all events in this series

at The Moat

Literary Fiction

If fiction allows us to escape the human condition, literary fiction celebrates it. So much more than the serious, high-fibre, ‘significant’ works of the canon, our local authors of literary fiction are producing work that explores language and form in fresh and unexpected ways. Join us for a night of readings that challenge your expectations.

Hear from Jennifer Down, Peggy Frew, Jack Kirne and Sarah Kanake.


Portrait of Peggy Frew

Peggy Frew

Peggy Frew's first novel, House of Sticks, won the Victorian Premier's Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript by an Emerging Victorian Writer, and was shortlisted for the UTS Glenda Adams Prize for New Writing. Hope Farm, her second novel, won the Barbara Jefferis Award, was shortlisted for the Stella Prize and the Miles Franklin Literary Award, and longlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award. 

Portrait of Jennifer Down

Jennifer Down

Jennifer Down is a writer, editor and translator. She was named a Sydney Morning Herald Young Novelist of the Year consecutively in 2017 and 2018 for her debut novel, Our Magic Hour, and her short story collection, Pulse Points. Pulse Points received the 2018 Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction, and the Queensland Literary Award – Steel Rudd Prize for Short Fiction. She lives in Melbourne.

Portrait of Jack Kirne

Jack Kirne

Jack Kirne is a writer and musician who enjoys singing to other people's pets. His short story, What Daisy Said, won the Judith Rodriguez Prize for 2016. He is also a former editor of WORDLY and Queerelle, and has been published in Verandah and Voiceworks. He is currently undertaking an honours in creative writing at Deakin University.

Portrait of Sarah Kanake

Sarah Kanake

Sarah Kanake grew up in the rural beach town of Tin Can Bay with her parents, brother who has Down syndrome, two Aboriginal foster brothers and her best friend. Sarah’s father is a Vietnam war veteran. At four years old, Sarah was accidentally shot in the bottom. At eight years old, Sarah was bitten on the very same bottom cheek by a shark – her brother literally pulled the shark off her. Sarah is a creative writing tutor at University of the Sunshine Coast. She has a PhD in creative writing from QUT on the representations of Down syndrome in Australian literature. She was recently shortlisted for the Overland Short Story Prize and won the QUT Postgraduate Writing Award in 2013. Her fiction has been published most recently in The Lifted Brow and Stilts. Sarah is one half of the country music duo The Shiralee. She lives on the Sunshine Coast with her partner, baby daughter and two labradoodles. Sing Fox to Me is her first novel.

The Next Big Thing

The Next Big Thing takes place every month at the Moat and is a cherished Melbourne institution. It's the place to be if you want to hear great emerging writers read from new and adventurous work.

Enjoy a delicious drink and a bite to eat, while sampling writing from tomorrow's best and brightest literary stars.


More about this venue, including large map, parking, public transport and accessibility.