One of my favourite things about living in Adelaide are the festivals. ‘Mad March’ celebrates the arts and is packed full of theatre, dance, music, literature, circus, film, music, comedy and more. By far my favourite festival is – you guessed it – Writers’ Week. It draws a number of international authors along with local and Australian talent.
I had a great time catching up with other Adelaide writers, including thriller author Mercedes Mercier. I discovered her debut novel, White Noise, in October of last year and am so excited to continue Dr Laura Fleming’s journey in the second book, Black Lies, which is set to release in June.
A particular highlight was listening to Jane Harper on the final day of Writers’ Week. Jane is the author of bestselling crime novels set in rural Australia. Her latest book (the final instalment of her series based around detective Aaron Falk) is set in the vineyards of South Australia, which are very familiar to me! But what really stood out was Jane’s advice to aspiring authors, and her down to earth approach. I love that her popular novel, The Dry, came from a place of pure passion rather than intending to write for the market. She highlighted the importance of that age-old advice – write what you want to read, which I think is a great message for writers. Understanding the market you’re writing in is undeniably important, but passion and intuition as a reader shouldn’t be underestimated. After all, it’s always possible to edit your work to make it more marketable, or to pivot and write something new if necessary, but passion for a project can’t be faked.
It’s always inspiring to attend Writers’ Week, and this year was no exception. While writing itself can be solitary, there are so many ways of coming together to motivate each other and celebrate the process.
With that in mind, I’m signing off to work on my latest manuscript.
Happy writing x
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