More in Books, reading & writing
Biography & memoir
The Wheeler Centre
We Are Here: Stories of Home, Place and Belonging
Homelessness can take many guises – sleeping rough, yes, but also couch-surfing, squatting, or staying in a refuge, boarding house or caravan park. The same can be said of the people who experience homelessness. Not defined simply by their predicament, they’re a diverse group. They may be siblings, parents, grandparents; people who study or work; people who’ve moved or migrated, yet to find their feet. People with full lives, and much to offer.
A new profit-for-purpose book from Affirm Press, We Are Here: Stories of Home, Place and Belonging, is a testament to the unique insights of people who’ve known homelessness in Australia. Edited by novelist, homelessness researcher and former Big Issue deputy editor Meg Mundell, it offers a bounty of extraordinary true stories from a wide range of writers – prominent names, emerging voices and first-timers – who have themselves experienced homelessness. Behrouz Boochani, Krissy Kneen and Claire G. Coleman appear alongside undiscovered talents, exploring the idea of place – and how our sense of it changes when homeless.
Hosted by Mundell, and presented in partnership with Writers Victoria, hear from contributors Claire G. Coleman, Roderick Waller, Ayub Abdi-Barre and Jody Letts about their stories, their places and their writing. Hear readings from the book – and learn about the process of putting it together – at this celebration of survival, place and belonging.
'It’d be near-impossible to read this rich and humane mosaic of stories and not have how you conceive of homelessness completely reframed. A beautiful testament to survival, resilience and hope.' – Benjamin Law
Prefer to watch? Catch up on our live-streamed video below. Includes Auslan interpretation.We Are Here: Stories of Home, Place and Belonging Watch
The Wheeler Centre
Broadside: Helen Garner
'I just threw out all ideas of inspiration years ago. It's all just noticing. You've got to walk around the world looking at things and listening and paying attention.'
In the words of one critic 'to read Helen Garner is to discover what might be her defining characteristic: awakeness and aliveness to the thingness of things'. Garner, a national treasure, has now spent almost half a century showing us who we are and how it is. And she has sharpened this singular style — her humour, sense of the absurd and incisive observation – over a lifetime of writing diaries.
Sarah Krasnostein, left, and Helen Garner — Photo: Hannah Koelmeyer
To coincide with the publication of Yellow Notebook, Diaries Volume I: 1978–1987, Garner shares with us the pages that offer a glimpse into the honing and shaping of a craft. Beginning in the 1970s just after the publication of her first novel, Monkey Grip, the book offers a unique insight into how decades of privately shaped internal dialogue creates a voice, and makes a writer.
In conversation with Sarah Krasnostein, Garner discusses the logic of writing, redacting and publishing one's diaries – as well as reflecting on creativity, the emotionally loaded space of hospitals and courtrooms, the architecture of sentences and her fascination with strangers.
Hot Desk Extract: Committed
An extract from Hot Desk Fellow Bella Green's Committed – a series of autobiographical comedic non-fiction essays about sex work.
Emerging Writers’ Festival Programme Launch: The Awkward Stage
The 2019 Emerging Writers’ Festival launches with a night of readings. What, exactly, is an ‘emerging’ writer? At what point do you come out of the chrysalis?
From this special opening-night event, hear from Kat Clarke, Vidya Rajan, Sumudu Samarawickrama and Ahmed Yussuf, as they each tell us about the first time they considered themselves a writer. Hosted by the…
The Fifth Estate
Samantha Power on Influence and Idealism
Please note: this Fifth Estate conversation is taking place at lunchtime, instead of in the evening, due to guest speaker availability.
How does a person navigate the change from activist outsider to influential insider? How do you balance idealism and pragmatism under pressure?
Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Samantha Power has had to navigate these questions first-hand. From a troubled childhood in…
The Show of the Year 2019
Goodbye 2019, we hardly knew ye! One minute, it was all heatwaves and holidays. The next minute, Simone Biles was doing triple-double backflips and Master Archie was high-fiving Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Yes, in 2019, the news once again outpaced our ability to keep up with it. But with our annual Show of the Year we'll relive the past 12 months…
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