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Every weekday, we’ll post fresh, exciting content from here and around the web – articles, snippets, videos, links, quotes and whatever else we find. Visit every day.

» Friday High Five: My Friend Siri, Walkleys and Catfishing

Walkley Award finalists announced for 2014

The finalists have been announced for the 2014 Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism; winners will be announced on 4 December. You can read the full list of finalists online.

The longlist in the book category is:
· Paul Barry, Breaking News… read more

» Working with Words: Kate Richards

Kate Richards has a medical degree with honours and works part-time in medical research in Melbourne. She is the author of the critically acclaimed Madness: A Memoir and the Penguin Special Is There No Place for Me?. She writes fiction, narrative nonfiction and poetry.

We spoke to Kate… read more

» 'We're Not Alone': Maggie Mackellar on Memoir

Maggie Mackellar’s first memoir, When it Rains, was a story about grief, loss, recovery and reconnection. She writes about losing her husband (to suicide) and her mother (to cancer) in the space of a year, then moving to her uncle’s farm with her two young children in rural NSW to… read more

» Pedal-Powered Essay: Melbourne’s Hidden Cycling History

While poring over cycling journals from the 1880s and 1890s, author Greg Foyster stumbled across some enlightening historical anecdotes about our city’s first ‘wheelmen’ and ‘wheelwomen’. Here, he shares how our cycling history should make us view the bicycle in a new light.


Image by read more

» Is the Publishing Industry Ready for Interactive Books?

highlight When Annabel Smith embarked on creating her interactive digital ebook The Ark, she realised how wedded we still are to the old-fashioned p-book … and the obstacles (in terms of technology, distribution platforms and publisher attitudes) that lie in the way of writers wanting to harness… read more

» Friday High Five: A Crooked Forest, Lynch's LA and Media Undercover

Asylum seekers, poetry and mental health

How do asylum seekers care for their mental health while in detention centres? One surprising way is through a Facebook poetry and writing group, run from a kitchen table in Castlemaine. Around 100 asylum seekers take part. You can find out more… read more

» Working with Words: Nic Low

Nic Low is an author and artist of Ngai Tahu and European descent. His fiction, essays and criticism have appeared in the Big Issue, Monthly, Griffith REVIEW, Lifted Brow, Art Monthly and Australian Book Review, and until recently he ran Asialink’s international writing program. His… read more

» Infinite Love and Murderous Impulses: Richard Flanagan on The Narrow Road to the Deep North

Richard Flanagan won the Man Booker Prize last night for his novel The Narrow Road to the Deep North, inspired by his father’s experiences as a prisoner of war. Last year, Ramona Koval interviewed Flanagan about the book at the Wheeler Centre. Their conversation ranged across the process… read more

» Julia Gillard on Kevin Rudd and the Leadership Change

Last week, we hosted an event with former prime minister Julia Gillard, in which she spoke candidly with Kate Langbroek about a range of issues. The two dominant subjects of reflection were the gender question and how that affected her performance (and experience) as prime minister, and… read more

» Julia Gillard on the 'Curious Question of Gender'

Last week, we hosted an event with former prime minister Julia Gillard, in which she spoke candidly with Kate Langbroek about a range of issues. The two dominant subjects of reflection were the gender question and how that affected her performance (and experience) as prime minister, and… read more

» Friday High Five: Books on HBO, Psychopaths and Astronauts

Olive Kitteridge HBO series

Elizabeth Strout’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Olive Kitteridge, has been adapted into an HBO miniseries that will premiere next month – and it looks promising. The cast includes Frances McDormand (in the title role), Richard Jenkins and Bill Murray, and it’s … read more

» Working with Words: Simon Barnard

highlight Simon Barnard was born and grew up in Launceston. He spent a lot of time in the bush as a boy, which led to an interest in Tasmanian history. He is an illustrator and collector of colonial artefacts, and his new book is A-Z of Convicts in Van Diemen’s Land (Text Publishing).

We spoke to… read more

» The Edge of Vulnerability: Cate Kennedy on Australian Love Stories

We asked Cate Kennedy, editor of Australian Love Stories (Inkerman & Blunt), to share what makes a particularly Australian love story – and whether there were any common themes or subjects that stood out when she was going through submissions for the anthology. She also reflects on what… read more

» Strange Creatures and the Nella Dan: An interview with Favel Parrett

Melissa Cranenburgh speaks to Favel Parrett about her latest novel, When the Night Comes, and how it came to life, revisiting the 1980s Hobart of Parrett’s childhood and resurrecting the well-loved Antarctic supply ship, Nella Dan.


Favel Parrett

Back in the… read more

» Poetry, Publishing and a Meat Cleaver: An interview with Ron Pretty

Five Islands Press is offering its inaugural Ron Pretty Poetry Prize this year, named in recognition of its founder’s contribution to Australian literature through his own poetry, his teaching, and his publication of 230 books of poetry by other poets. Ron was the founder and managing… read more

» 'Read the Damn Books': Ten Tips for Writing about Books for Children and Teenagers

Children’s and youth literature expert Judith Ridge has had enough of under-informed and ‘insulting’ critiques of children’s and YA books. Responding to Helen Razer’s recent anti-YA argument in Crikey’s Daily Review, she’s come up with ten tips for writing about books for children and… read more

» Sam Vincent on the Whale Wars

Sam Vincent takes an objective look at both sides of the whale wars – and at what humans, especially Australians, have invested in saving whales. He also traces our historical involvement with the whaling industry, which preceded ‘the sheep’s back’ as the primary driver of our… read more

» Making Things in the Digital Age: Sophie Cunningham on Portland's XOXO Festival

Sophie Cunningham attended Portland’s XOXO Festival around independent digital culture last weekend, and she’s reported on it for us – and reflected on the way that so many of the burning issues of digital culture also resonate for her as a writer.


XOXO is a small festival around… read more

» Meet the Fellows: Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowship 2014, Round Three

Our third and final group of Hot Desk Fellows for 2014 begin their work at the Wheeler Centre today. As is customary, we’ve invited each of our six talented writers to share an introduction to the projects they’ll be spending their time on.

The Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowships offer… read more

» Friday High Five: Brewed meat, artistic science, digital journalism and creativity unlocked

Faster pasture

Don’t have a cow, man. Technology Review this week spoke with Andras Forgacs about his plans to ‘brew’ meat in cell-culture vats. Forgacs is the CEO of Brooklyn-based startup Modern Meadow. As he explains in this short interview:

The company was founded to expand the ideas… read more

» Working with Words: Kirsty Murray

Melbourne author Kirsty Murray writes fiction and non-fiction for children and young adults. She has published over a dozen books. Her latest is The Year It All Ended, a work of historical fiction based at the juncture of World War I and the birth of the Jazz Age.

We spoke to her about… read more

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