Monday, May 2, 2011

A weekend in Gloucester

Seems a lot of new writers festivals are popping up all around the place. More and more schools are putting them on, mostly modelled on the marvellous Somerset Celebration of Literature on the Gold Coast. Then there are the community festivals, such as the new Bellingen Writers Festival.

And there's this one - the Gloucester Writers Festival, held for the first time during the weekend just past. It wasn't a bad lineup of presenters, either - Pamela Freeman, Pam Rusby, Anthony Lawrence, Les Murray and Barry Maitland, to name but a few.

We all had a great time, with a number of events on offer, including a poetry sprint, a young writers' short story competition, and a number of workshops in addition to the panel sessions. I met a number of new people, like the lovely Julie Ditrich, who presented on the topic of graphic novels, and Jesse Blackadder, as well as the organiser, Lindy Dupree.

Then there were the CWA ladies and their pumpkin scones.

And the place! Oh, the place! Anyone who's never been to Gloucester should do i
t, and do it soon. On the drive up there on Friday, I found myself driving past the first day of the Stroud show. Now, I just want to say this: I very rarely go to the Royal Easter Show. I pretty much hate it. Too many people spending money they don't have on things they don't need and food they don't really like while they look at things they don't really understand. But proper country shows are great. I spent a lovely hour wandering around, looking at the campdrafting and the cattle dog trials and the produce displays. They even had a competition for "Best afternoon tea tray with food for one".

And pumpkin scones.

1 comment:

David Barrett said...

Ah, an Australian country town with Show... memories. I remember when show bags were free!!! Pumpkin scones and CWA... my grandmother was President of CWA for years...decades in Maitland. Royal Easter Show... once was enough. Glad you had a great time James.