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Emerging Writers' Festival Has Unveiled Its Jam-Packed 2021 Program

The 11-day festival will showcase up-and-coming literary talent across a series of talks, classes, performances and storytelling events.
By Libby Curran
May 11, 2021
By Libby Curran
May 11, 2021

UPDATE, JUNE 9, 2021: Following Melbourne's lockdown, and taking into consideration the restrictions that'll still be in place when it ends, Emerging Writers' Festival will now be held exclusively online. For further details, head to the festival's website.


If you're a devourer of books, chances are you're always on the hunt for some fresh literary finds. And they don't get much fresher than the lineup at Melbourne's esteemed Emerging Writers' Festival (EWF), which returns for a bumper 2021 edition this winter.

Featuring 11 days of talks, screenings, workshops and other well-worded delights, this year's festival will descend on venues across Melbourne from Wednesday, June 16–Saturday, June 26. The long-running event not only shines a spotlight on some of the country's hottest upcoming literary talent, but also serves up endless inspiration and great ideas.

The 2021 program is packed with events for all varieties of lit-lover — from a night of live performance headlined by emerging stars like Wai-Mun Mah, Christy Tan, Wallis Prophet and Penny Smits, to an expert-led masterclass digging into the future of digital storytelling. The Planetarium is set to host a special screening of the Scienceworks full dome film Starlight, followed by a presentation of two written works created in response to the star-filled flick. And EWF favourite Amazing Babes will see a cast of familiar faces sharing stories about the women, real and imagined, who've helped shape their lives.

Sisonke Msimang

This year's festival will also serve up an extensive offering of digital happenings, including the centrepiece National Writers' Conference. The full-day online event is aimed at supporting and inspiring emerging writers through a program of panels, talks, workshops and pitching sessions. It's also your chance to hear from EWF's 2021 ambassadors, including poet and editor Elena Gomez (Body of Work), activist and novelist Tony Birch (Ghost River), and non-fiction star Sisonke Msimang (Always Another Country: A Memoir of Exile and Home).

Elsewhere among the digital program, you'll find bites like A Meal At The Table — an online event featuring a night of cooking, stories and recipes from a lineup of food-obsessed literary stars.

This year's Emerging Writers' Festival runs from Wednesday, June 16–Saturday, June 26 at venues across Melbourne and online. Head to the website to check out the full program and grab tickets.

Published on May 11, 2021 by Libby Curran


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