writer

Newcastle Writers Festival, A Review, by Alice by Newcastle Discovered

The fifth annual Newcastle Writers’ Festival gathered an impressive group of great individuals, with over 140 writers from all over Australia and a record-breaking number of 9000 participants.

By Alice Modzelewska

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Chatting with Brooke Tunbridge, by Kian by Kian West

It was a pretty windy afternoon when I sat down out the front of Civic Digest (no they don’t stock Mirage, so you should probably pester them, or boycott?) with Brooke Tunbridge, a pretty gosh darn special young woman who first appeared some months ago with an article on Crave Newcastle (look ‘em up on Instagram) and has consistently wowed us since then! As it turns out, she’s still perfecting her craft at university, so we had a chat about that and what she loves…

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in Conversation with Laura Kebby, by Ryan by Ryan Williams

Laura Kebby has been writing for Mirage furiously. I can’t keep up. It’s like crack cocaine for her (she really likes it). Now, after a significant upgrade in publications, publishing pieces online for the likes of Tone Deaf, Music Feeds, and Pedestrian TV, Kian and I think Kebby might be getting ideas. I met with Laura at the Hamo for a nice chat to make sure she wasn’t going anywhere. 

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60 seconds with... Alexandra Neill by Kian West

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DID YOU KNOW THERE IS A NATIONAL YOUNG WRITERS FESTIVAL THAT HAPPENS IN NEWCASTLE ANNUALLY? WE GOT TO CHATTING WITH ALEXANDRA, CO-DIRECTOR OF THE FESTIVAL, TO FIND OUT ALL THINGS #WORD RELATED. PS. YOU CAN FOLLOW HER ON TWITTER: @paper_bag_girl

 With Alexandra Neill

By Kian West

Photo Credit: Alan Weedon

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So Alex, tell us a little bit about yourself?

I’m a writer and blogger. I like cooking, reading and Dungeons and Dragons. I do not like carrots.

I lived in Newcastle until early this year when I moved down to Melbourne (I know, traitor). I actually moved to Newcastle after going to the National Young Writers Festival in 2009. I fell in love with the place a little and decided to head there for uni. Melbourne is pretty ok but there’s a lot of things I miss about Newcastle.

 

What’s your role at the National Young Writers Festival (NYWF)?

I’m a Co-Director. There are three of us that share this role (me, Lex Hirst and Jessica Alice) and together we’re responsible for programming the festival. That means (put simply) we choose the people who’ll attend and decide what all the events will be. It’s an amazing job. I’ve had such a great time working with Lex and Jess to put together the almost eighty events across this year’s program.

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We heard there is a ball, care to elaborate?

The ball is an NYWF tradition! It’s always a highlight. Held on the Saturday of the festival, it’s a chance for everyone to dress up and do some dancing. The theme this year is “Intergalactic”. Think glow sticks, stars, sci-fi and Davie Bowie. We will likely play a lot of David Bowie songs. It’s going to be a blast (rocket pun intended).

 

Assuming some people reading this will be kicking themselves realising they have missed the NYWF, If you could steer them towards checking out one young writer, who would it be? 

Why?

This is such a hard question! I’m therefore going to cheat and recommend a publication instead of a person. If you’re interested in young writers, Voiceworks is the place to go. It’s a magazine which publishes writing and visual art from people under 25 and it’s consistently amazing. If you want to be that guy who brags about knowing the person’s work before they got famous, read Voiceworks. It’s bursting with amazing new voices.

 

Who is your biggest inspiration?

If you’ll allow me to be really corny, my biggest inspiration right now are the people I’m working with on NYWF. There’s this amazing bunch of people working their butts off behind the scenes to make this festival happen. Most of us also work or study full-time so NYWF is done in the moments we can spare. It’s a labour of love. Working with everyone has been such a privilege and I’ve been constantly inspired by their ideas, enthusiasm and passion. They are the best.

 

Anything else Novocastrians should know about you?

I once got a concussion at an art gallery because I walked into a statue.