Proving readers in the bush are keen to discuss their literary preferences, over 250 keen readers gathered at the small village of Jugiong to celebrate power and emotional pull of published words during the 2017 Jugiong Writers Festival.
The biennial event was opened by Stan Grant, who told his audience, “everyone’s life is a journey, and it is how you make that journey that is important.”
“You demand of us as writers, new thoughts and new ideas to provoke and inspire, and take you to other places,” Mr Grant said.
“I think poetry speaks louder than politics, songs tell us who we are, I think stories tell us who we are and I think together, through this story, we actually create a nation.”
Mr Grant was a guest speaker along with Professor Bill Gammage in a discussion on “Writing Country” led by moderator, Gabrielle Chan, author and journalist who spends a lot of time in the Canberra Press Gallery.
Inspirational and acclaimed author Di Morrissey started the proceedings with a conversation with Vivien Thomson, local farmer, author and past president of Australian Women in Agriculture.
Mrs Thomson later presented Ms Morrissey with a birthday cake featuring covers of some her most well-known books.
Other guests included Sulari Gentill, Margareta Osborn, Pip Courtney, and The Alice Campions.
Joy Coggan, long-time resident of the Jugiong district and keen reader was overwhelmed by the attendance.
“We have 250 people booked to hear our wonderful speakers,” Mrs Coggan said.
“It shows how much interest there is for country people to be able to listen and connect with some of their favorite authors.”