UOW graduate Dakota Feirer sits against a tree and looks into the distance. He wears a denim jacket. Photo: Paul Jones

UOW literary talent shines at South Coast Writers Festival

UOW literary talent shines at South Coast Writers Festival

Academics and graduates to take part in annual celebration of emerging and established authors

Bookworms, storytellers and budding writers are invited to explore the best of the Illawarra’s literary world when the South Coast Writers Festival holds an event at the University of Wollongong (UOW) tonight.

From today until Sunday (17-20 August), the South Coast Writers Festival will feature captivating stories, thought-provoking discussion, and inspiring conversations from authors, broadcasters, poets, and thinkers from all over the country. The annual event is the brainchild of the South Coast Writers Centre and Festival Director Sarah Nicholson.

UOW will host the Emerging Writers Reading on campus this evening (17 August), featuring fresh and talented new voices from the South Coast Writers Centre’s mentoring program. The event is presented by the South Coast Writers Festival in partnership with UOW.

Mentor Dr Emma Darragh, a Lecturer in Creative Writing and Creative Arts at UOW, will introduce mentees Diana Plater, Deborah Huff-Horwood and Rose Searby reading works in program. Emerging Aboriginal Writers mentor Judi Morison introduces mentees Tabatha Cann and Nicole Smede. Emerging Refugee and CALD (Culturally and Linguistically Diverse) Writers mentor Zohra Aly introduces Xiaoxue Li and Gabi Martinez, and Young Writers Collective mentor Helena Fox introduces UOW graduates Rhys Lorenc, Sky Carrall, Paige Webster and Jamilla Dempsey.

Associate Professor Catherine McKinnon, Deputy Head of the School of the Arts, English and Media, said she was delighted that UOW was supporting the festival and shining a light on the literary talent of staff and graduates.

“The South Coast Writers Festival is a wonderful event where readers and writers can join together to discuss stories and storytelling. This year the festival has some amazing authors that have been thinking through the thorny issues of our time in ways that are provocative, challenging and always engaging,” Associate Professor McKinnon said.    

A number of UOW’s celebrated staff and graduates who are active in the literary world will take part in events throughout the weekend:

Dr Joshua Lobb (Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing, Acting Executive Dean of the Faculty of the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities at UOW and author of The Flight of Birds) – ‘Books We Love’, 7pm-9.30pm, Friday 18 August

Hayley Scrivenor (UOW graduate and author of Dirt Town) - ‘Books We Love’, 7pm-9.30pm, Friday 18 August

Associate Professor Siobhan McHugh (Honorary Fellow in UOW’s School of Humanities and Social Inquiry) – ‘The Podcast’, 11.15am-12.15am, Saturday 19 August

Senior Professor Sue Turnbull (School of the Arts, English and Media) – ‘Crime Worlds’, 3.15pm-4.15pm, Saturday 19 August

Dakota Ferreir (UOW graduate, pictured above) – ‘Wollongong Poetry Month Showcase’, 6pm-7.30pm, Saturday 19 August

Dr Christine Howe (Lecturer in Creative Writing at UOW and author of Song in the Dark) – ‘Speculative Fiction’, 10am-11am, Sunday 20 August

Associate Professor Catherine McKinnon (Deputy Head of the School of the Arts, English and Media and author of Storyland) – ‘In Conversation: The Writer at Work’, 12.30pm-1.30pm, Sunday 20 August

For more information about sessions and for tickets to the South Coast Writers Festival, visit: https://southcoastwriters.org/festival2023