Waking up daily and not really knowing 'how to live'? Yep, we're kicking off Friday with some sweet, sweet deep thinking. Often we don't have the answer to this ourselves, so we look to the advice of others to get the glorious tips. And who better than writers, authors, novelists, essayists, journalists, critics and experts to clue our meandering minds in? Taking the theme of 'how to live?' this year, Sydney Writers' Festival has announced its 2015 program lineup.
This year, Sydney Writers' Festival has booked more than 400 Australian and 45 international writers to appear, chat and have a few drinks with us in the festival lounge from May 18 - 24. Kicking off the SWF with the opening address is The Reluctant Fundamentalist novelist and acclaimed essayist Mohsin Hamid, author of the book NPR can't stop talking about (H is for Hawk) Helen Macdonald (who'll give the closing address). British actor Alan Cumming is coming (couldn't help myself), who's released novels and opinion pieces over the years — most recently his candid autobiography Not My Father's Son. Fellow British actor David Walliams will be here, who's drummed up quite the Roald Dahlian children's book career after Little Britain.
The world's biggest selling author for the last 13 years and inventor of Detective Alex Cross — yep, James Patterson will be here. Then there's crime writer Michael Connelly, journalist Nick Davies (who uncovered the hacking scandal), and the one you can blame for the term 'Generation X', Douglas Coupland. Local legend and 2014 Man Booker Prize winner, Richard Flanagan, is on the bill, along with Miles Franklin Award-winning writer Evie Wyld.
Two former Prime Ministers, Julia Gillard and John Howard, and former Queensland Premier turned Sydneysider Anna Bligh are locked in. Podcaster Starlee Kine will be here, alongside happiness expert Paul Dolan and happiness advocate Leigh Ann Henion, war correspondents Christina Lamb and Åsne Seierstad, celebrity critic Daniel Mendelsohn. Medically assessing how to live will be doctors who write, Atul Gawande and Norman Doidge and mortician Caitlin Doughty.
Novelists aplenty this year with renowned writers like Amy Bloom, Micheal Frayn, Ben Okri, David Mitchell, Anthony Horowitz, Emily St John Mandel, Jonathan Lethem, debut novelists Zia Haider Rahman and Mitchell S Jackson, and Australia’s bestselling authors Kate Grenville, David Malouf, Liane Moriarty, Graeme Simsion, Helen Garner, Robert Dessaix, Joan London, Steve Toltz, Sonya Hartnett, Nick Earls, Don Watson and Brooke Davis all leaving their pages for a second to come chat.
Sydney Writers' Festival runs May 18 to 24. For more info and tickets head over here.