SHWF 2018 - Friday 20th - Saturday 21st July

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Southern Highlands Writers’ Festival

Opening Night - Friday 20 July

The Wife movie will launch SHWF 2018

Film: The Wife

Join us for an advanced screening of the film The Wife, based on Meg Wolitzer’s 2003 novel, starring Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce and Christian Slater. We will also launch two new books: Book Towns, by Alex Johnson and The House on the River, by Bowral-based author Alexandra Springett.


Festival day - Saturday 21 July

Michelle Scott Tucker will be talking about her new book Elizabeth Macarthur: A Life at the Edge of the World at SHWF 2018

Michelle Scott Tucker

In 1788 a young woman raised in the vicarage of an English village married a handsome, but penniless, army officer. In any Austen novel that would be the end of the story, but for the real-life woman who became an Australian farming entrepreneur, it was just the beginning. Michelle Scott Tucker shines a light on an often-overlooked aspect of Australia’s history, the fascinating Elizabeth Macarthur. 

Tania Blanchard & Lauren Chater will be talking about their new books at SHWF 2018

Tania Blanchard & Lauren Chater

Tania Blanchard (The Girl from Munich) and Lauren Chater (The Lace Weaver) have both just had their debut novels published through Simon & Schuster. The authors will be discussing their new works and how they were able to navigate the challenging path to publication. The authors will be discussing their new works with moderator, Dr Catherine McKinnon, author of Storyland.

Robyn Cadwallader will be talking about her new book at SHWF 2018

Robyn Cadwallader

Robyn Cadwallader is the author of the internationally acclaimed novel The Anchoress. Her latest work, Book of Colours, is a deeply profound and moving novel about the importance of creativity and the power of connection, told through the story of the commissioning of a magnificently illuminated medieval prayer book. It is also a novel about the place of women in the turbulent world of the early fourteenth century.

Nicola Moriarty will be talking about her new book at SHWF 2018

Nicola Moriarty

Nicola Moriarty has a serious literary pedigree as the younger sister of bestselling authors Liane Moriarty (Big Little Lies) and Jaclyn Moriarty (The Ashbury/Brookfield series). She has had various career changes, and has now published several novels, Free-Falling; Paper Chains; and The Fifth Letter, which has been optioned by Universal Cable Productions for film and television.

Virginia Lloyd will be talking about her new book at SHWF 2018

Virginia Lloyd

Virginia Lloyd spent much of her childhood learning and playing the piano and thought she would make a career as a pianist. When that didn’t happen, she spent a long time wondering about those years of study. Girls at the Piano explores the changing relationship between women and the piano over the course of the instrument’s history, taking us from the salons of 18th-century Europe to an amateur jazz workshop in the early 21st century.


Message from Michaela

Welcome to the 2018 Southern Highlands Writers’ Festival, our seventh annual event!

In programming the previous SHWFs, I have always made a point of having a fairly even mix of male and female authors each year. However, this year, I have decided to use the Festival platform to respond to the #MeToo Movement. So for the first time, we will be celebrating an all-female line up of authors. 

At her recent appearance at the Sydney Writers’ Festival, former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard commented in relation to #MeToo: “I think this gathering wave is going to be remembered as one of the big moments of feminism”.

Rather than exploring the sometimes divisive elements of #MeToo, we will be celebrating gender equality and viewing the world from a female perspective.

With this year’s raffle, we will be raising funds for Share the Dignity; this wonderful Australian charity distributes sanitary products to homeless women and fights for the rights of domestic violence victims.

Tickets are selling fast, so I urge you to book soon!
I look forward to welcoming you to the 2018 Southern Highlands Writers’ Festival.

Warmest regards,
Michaela Bolzan
Festival Director