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Out of the Writer Cave pt 1 – Byron Bay Writers Festival

August 26, 2012

I’m still trying to get my head around everything that’s happened in the last 3.5 weeks. I declared August to be out-of-the-writer-cave, and it lived up to its promise, but for the remainder of the month, and the months to come, I will be crawling back into the writer cave to edit, polish and put my writing where my mouth is. But so much has happened, there will be several blog posts

As usual, for the first weekend of August, I was at the Byron Bay Writers Festival. My first afternoon was free so I wandered around the Arts & Industry estate, eventually ending up back at the  SAE campus, where I met these very wet musicians.

I may be getting too set in my ways to share accommodation, but there was quite a lot of debacle about the accommodation arrangements this year. Let me say,6 women in a cabin with only one mirror – not a good combination.  Combined with a blackout (blown fuse) on the first night and everyone else went to bed and left me with the job of letting the managers in and out of the cabin to find the source of the problem – fun times. Luckily I had my ipad and Eric Northman to keep me company. Have I mentioned how much I love my ipad? And it goes without saying how much I adore Eric.

Recently, I’ve only been using Twitter for events, and #BBWF12 is definitely tweet worthy, so I tweeted that there was no romance panel at Byron this year but there were romance writers there and posted a photo of myself, Jennifer St George, Lisa Heidke and Haylee Kerans from Harlequin Australia.


The tweet made the BBWF email newsletter and I hope the powers that be at the festival took notice. With all the questions being asked about 50 Shades, a romance panel would have provided answers.Fingers crossed that romance makes it onto the program in 2013.  It was great to catch up with Lisa and Jennifer at the Festival, and spend some time with Haylee.


In the Wireless Women panel, there was heated debate over 50 Shades of Grey between Haylee Kerans and Marieke Hardy.

Meanwhile,  Elliot Perlman was creating many romantic thoughts (and others) amongst my group of writer friends. After the Saturday sessions, with many of the ladies sighing about Elliot over dinner, I decided I better see what all the fuss was about, and attended an interesting session on Screen Adaptations. Well – I’d obviously attended the wrong sessions the day before.

I purchased Elliot’s book of short stories and lined up for his autograph. And in my author groupie fashion, which seems to be a fixture of the last years, I asked Elliot for a photo. when he asked ‘glasses on or glasses off?’, I replied ‘glasses off, it’s more rockstar’ and he laughed, right before the photo was taken.

I bought more books than I intended this year, so by Saturday, I banned myself from entering the book tent. Like a pokie addict trying to justify but still hold onto the habit, this ban did not stretch to the book signing tent. In a post-BBWF first, I’ve already read one of my 2012 BBWF purchases – My Hundred Lovers by Susan Johnson.
As always, the sculpture competition was fabulous, though I do not agree with the winner. My favourite was The Reader by Marie Francis Boissonneault, and I was not alone.  This sculpture won the People’s Choice Award. Shame I don’t have a spare $8000 to take it home with me. But I did take a photo, and then played around with the photo in an app called Visual Poet. This is what I came up with…

Did I mention how much I love my iPad? Oh yes, I will probably devote a blog post to it soon.

I returned home from Byron Bay full of writing mojo, with a bag full of books, and a cold that did not make itself known until the following evening, 10 hours after visiting my doctor. Great timing!

Next post…author Helene Young visits Coffs Harbour.





One Comment leave one →
  1. September 7, 2012 2:39 pm

    Great to have you here again this year Diane!! The Festival was great and I loved every minute.

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