The big bucks: Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2011

Last night I went along to the 'streamlined' Victorian Premier's Literary Awards, run by the Wheeler Centre. The awards took place in the grand Plaza Ballroom (part of the Regent Theatre), built in 1929. The decadent entrance and room is apparently in the Spanish Rococo style, but it seemed very eclectic to me: nouveau flourishes, … Continue reading The big bucks: Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2011

The epic qualities of outwardly ordinary lives: By Nightfall and Michael Cunningham in Australia

By Nightfall, Michael Cunningham, HarperCollins (Aus pb, Aus ebook, US and Kindle, UK) Over the past few days I’ve been in the audience of four sessions featuring my favourite American author Michael Cunningham. Cunningham’s latest novel is By Nightfall. I've drafted a few posts on it since I read it, but was never able to adequately … Continue reading The epic qualities of outwardly ordinary lives: By Nightfall and Michael Cunningham in Australia

Bookish ways to help out the flood victims

The recent floods throughout Queensland and other parts of Australia have had a massive impact on many lives. But there are some literary-minded ways you can help out: 1. Bid for some of the signed or limited edition books and other literary goods like manuscript assessments in the Authors for Queensland auctions. 2. The Writers on Rafts … Continue reading Bookish ways to help out the flood victims

The Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2010

I attended the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards last night. I drank a lot of red wine, Casey Bennetto sang, awards were given, people got emotional, Peter Temple was hilarious, there was a dessert buffet, and Penguin CEO Gabrielle Coyne and I had a conversation about Michael Jackson. The Wheeler Centre, administering the awards for the first … Continue reading The Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2010

Writers for Burma, Wheeler Centre Program Three & other upcoming events

There are many events on the Melbourne literary calendar and mostly I'll track what looks interesting on Twitter, but there are a few coming up I'd like to devote a bit more space to... On October 3 is Writers for Burma, at the Bella Union Bar, Trades Hall, Carlton, from 2:30pm. MC and organiser Paul Mitchell … Continue reading Writers for Burma, Wheeler Centre Program Three & other upcoming events

Exquisite restraint, maximum expression: an interview with Colm Tóibín (part one)

Brooklyn Colm Toibin (Aus, US) Picador 9780330425612 Acclaimed Irish novelist Colm Tóibín was recently in Australia for the Sydney Writers Festival as well as events in Melbourne, including one for the Wheeler Centre. I caught up with Tóibín at his Melbourne hotel to ask him some questions about writing and his latest novel Brooklyn, which I recently had … Continue reading Exquisite restraint, maximum expression: an interview with Colm Tóibín (part one)