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Word Up! Guide to Melbourne Writers Festival

By Sarah Kempson - 24 Aug 2013

The City of Literature is once again abuzz with the Melbourne Writers Festival, an annual coming together of those interested in the written word.

Launched on Thursday and running until 1st September, Melbourne Writers Festival will feature keynote speeches from local and international literary luminaries, forums and lectures, plus plenty of big ideas. Designed to make you think, listen, speak and learn, events are programmed into four streams: Literature – the power of storytelling; Future Australia – identity and politics; Exploring the World – travel, science and anthropology; and Creative Lives – digital impacts.

Here are our pick of MWF events. Get online and get booking (pardon the pun).

Big Ideas: From Grassroots to Global Activisim | Sunday 25 August 7pm | Deakin Edge $30

Heading up the political theme, former Greens leader, Bob Brown, will present From Grassroots to Global Activism. Looking at the backlash of climate change actions, and long-term politics vs. urgent environmental action, Bob continues to invest in the future of Australia, and an ecologically sustainable world.

Feminism, Misogyny, Power | Thursday 29 August 6.30pm | Deakin Edge $30/$40

Ever since Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard uttered the word 'misogyny', women's equality has been a big issue on the agenda of many. Anne Summers presents a keynote speech – Feminism, Misogyny, Power – discussing the respect, remuneration and representation measures that must be attained if we are to find true equality.

BUT WAIT. It's not all so serious.
 
Friday Night Live | Friday 30 August 9pm | Deakin Edge $25
If you are a fan of comedy and intellect, you'll love Friday Night Live. Hosted by comic icon, Wendy Harmer, this Letterman-meets-Jon-Stewart late-night talk show will feature festival guests and comedian, Sammy J, plus music from The Blackeyed Susans. If you need a festival 'night out' this one ticks all the boxes – including a pop up bar!

Cooking the Books | Sunday 1 September 10am | ACMI The Cube, Free
As much as Melburnians love literature, it can't be denied that we are equally fond of food. Join Melbourne freelance food writer, Dani Valent, together with food blogger Ed Charles and broadcaster Bhakthi Puvanenthiran, for a discussion on food in literature. Bon Appétit!

If you think ethics in journalism is an oxymoron, the following sessions will give you food for thought.

The News About News
Friday 30 August 10am

A Picture Tells A Thousand Words
Friday 30 August 11.30am 

China – Opening Up or Closing Down?
Friday 30 August 1pm 

Getting it Right
Friday 30 August 2.30pm 

Is New Media Making Us Stupid?
Friday 30 August 10am 

The Citizen's Agenda
Friday 30 Aug 4pm

The New Newsroom
Saturday 31 August 6.30pm

Want to be a writer yourself? Attend one of the many 90-minute seminars, tailored to the style of writing you want to try. Presented by those who have been published in their field, these seminars give you the chance to ask questions and really understand how to make it as a writer.

The Art of Crime Writing
Sunday 25 August 12pm | The Wheeler Centre $50/$40

The Art of Memoir
Sunday 25 August 10am | The Wheeler Centre $50/$40

The Art of Writing For Children
Sunday 25 August 10am | The Wheeler Centre $50/$40

The Art of Travel Writing
Saturday 31 August 12pm | The Wheeler Centre $50/$40

If you're tired of all the talking, why not do some walking? Presented by street artist Michael Fikaris, be guided through the city's hidden underground artistic treasures on this 120 minute guided tour (including afternoon tea).

Walk: Street Art | Sunday 25 August 10.30am, Sunday 1 September 10.30am | Meet at MWF Box Office, Federation Square, $40/$30

Fellow book lover? Check out our guide to Melbourne's best independent book stores.

Image Credit: Writers Block by Richard Ahnert

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