Miles Franklin Literary Award winner Melissa Lucashenko, New York Times bestseller Sally Hepworth, and journalist David Marr are among 125 writers participating in the 2024 Newcastle Writers Festival from April 5 to 7.
Other guest writers include Charlotte Wood, whose most recent novel Stone Yard Devotional has been included in several ‘Best Books of 2023’ lists, as well as award-winning authors Nam Le and Christos Tsiolkas.
This will be New York Times bestselling author Sally Hepworth’s first visit to Newcastle, celebrating her ninth novel. Award-winning author Nam Le is also appearing for the first time; it has been 15 years since his acclaimed book The Boat was published and his much-anticipated new title, 36 Ways of Writing a Vietnamese Poem, is described by publisher Simon & Schuster as ‘an explosive, devastating debut book of poetry’.
David Marr will be speaking about his most recent book Killing for Country: A Family Story, which centres on the discovery that his forebears served with the brutal Native Police in the bloodiest years of the frontier wars.
Melissa Lucashenko will discuss her most recent novel Edenglassie, a historical novel set in parallel narratives between 2024 and 1854, with two love stories 200 years apart.
For the first time in a decade, festival director Rosemarie Milsom has delegated most of the program preparation to a program manager – writer and Secret Book Stuff co-founder Amy Lovat. “It’s become more difficult to manage the festival – the fundraising, logistics, and other programs we run – as well as the artistic programming,” said Rosemarie. “Amy is passionate about Australian books and has imbued the program with a deep knowledge and enthusiasm.”
There will be 95 ticketed and free events in the 2024 program, which will be presented in venues within the Civic precinct including the University of Newcastle’s Nuspace building, Conservatorium of Music, and Playhouse, as well as satellite venues.
The full program will be available from February 16 and tickets go on sale the same day.