Then Anna was invited to talk to students at Marryatville Primary School during Book Week. This year, the theme was ‘Champions Read’ and Anna chose to read extracts from, and talk to the children about, Pippi Longstocking. Both sessions were inspiring and uplifting, with little Reception children showing Anna books they had created all by themselves. It was an honour to be asked and Anna enjoyed it immensely.
Salisbury Writers’ Festival was up next. On Saturday 25 August, Anna had been asked to participate on a panel called A Conversation: Pathways to the Future where four industry specialists, including Connor Tomas O’Brien, Kerryn Goldsworthy and PD Martin (last minute replacement for Sean Williams, who was unwell) offered ‘their perspectives on online publishing opportunities, social media, blogging and the future of the book.’ It was an interesting session which generated plenty of debate.
On Sunday 26 August, Anna held her first ever writing workshop called ‘Know Your Characters’ with a great group of writers who had all come prepared to work. Combining talk about how to build a memorable character with writing exercises seemed a winning formula and everyone walked away feeling that they had learnt something. Salisbury Writers’ Festival is a great festival because it managers to bring readers and writers closer together than many of the larger festivals.
MidnightSun Publishing decided months ago that a launch at the Melbourne Writers Festival would be a fun and worthwhile thing to do. So on Saturday 1 September we had a session at the festival, where Rachel Hennesey (The Quakers) launched The Hum of Concrete and Patrick Allington (Figurehead) launched Pangamonium. It was a very well attended launch and it was fabulous to catch up with old Adelaide friends who have relocated to Melbourne.
After the launch, Zanesh and Anna have been booked in to speak at libraries and book clubs. Keep an eye on the events page for more details on where to catch them. Anna spoke about the writing process, her PhD and publishing at a seminar for staff and students at The University of Adelaide on 21 September. On 10 October, Anna was on a panel talking about career opportunities for Arts students at Lincoln College.
Meanwhile, Patrick Allington has written about Pangamonium on his excellent blog, Slapdash. Both The Hum of Concrete and Pangamonium are becoming part of the general literary discussion in Australia. In The Weekend Australian, September 29-30, Kate Holden mentions The Hum of Concrete in one of her reviews.