A fabulous line-up of talented international authors is just one of the many reasons the second Canberra Writers Festival is a weekend not be missed. But, like your reading list, you can only fit so many things in.
Taking place from Friday August 25 to Sunday August 27, the festival showcases local, national and international writers at more than 100 events, in eight venues, across three days and includes in-conversation sessions, workshops, special events, book launches, keynote events and even the chance to indulge in reading all those books on your to do list at the Festival's Silent Reading Party.
Here are five events you should find time for.
Opening night dinner with chef Matthew Evans
Thursday, August 24, 7pm, National Portrait Gallery
Matthew Evans. Photo: Alan Benson
He's a Canberra boy done good. Even if he's now firmly ensconced in Tasmania, we still have a soft spot for Matthew Evans. Join him for dinner, a night of good food, fine wine, conversation and an exclusive after dark opening of the National Portrait Gallery. Evans has a two-course meal with matching wines prepared and he'll also talk about his latest book Gourmet Farmer Deli Book. Don't miss it.
Women at Work
Friday, August 25, 3.15pm, National Library of Australia
Join Virginia Haussegger, Jamila Rizvi and Catherine Fox as they talk about what can be done to level this grossly uneven seesaw of employment and why Australia would benefit from helping women achieve their rightful place at work. Lots of smart women in the one room at the same time. Make sure you're one of them.
Hoi Polloi buffet dinner and literary trivia
Friday, August 25, 5.30pm, Hoi Polloi, Museum of Australian Democracy
Craig Cormick. Photo: Supplied
Think you know your literary trivia? What is Maggie Alderson's Polly's (the main character in her latest novel) job? How many books did Jack Heath write before he was 30? Where does Ghost Empire take place? While scores will be appointed for correct answers, highly-creative "alternative truth" answers may also score well. One ticket gives you access to a buffet dinner at Hoi Polloi and the trivia night hosted by Craig Cormick. The buffet serves up two salad options, three main options and two desserts. The trivia serves up lots of fun.
Secret City Binge Fest
Saturday, August 26, 3pm and Sunday, August 27, 1pm, Museum of Australian Democracy
A scene from Secret City, the new Foxtel mini-series set in Canberra. Photo: supplied
In case you missed my recaps the first time around, now you can binge watch Secret City. With the hotly-anticipated production of Secret City 2 by Foxtel set to be announced soon, join the Canberra Writers Festival in the shadow of Parliament House to binge-watch the gripping original Secret City series based on the books by Steve Lewis and Chris Uhlmann. Filmed in Parliament House and locations across Canberra and Sydney and starring Jacki Weaver, Anna Torv, Alan Dale and Dan Wyllie, Secret City is inspired by the best-selling novels The Marmalade Files and The Mandarin Code, written by Canberra political journalists Chris Uhlmann and Steve Lewis. Will they be there? Let's hope so.
Girls's Night In: Live and dangerous.
Sunday, August 27, 7pm
Australian Author Kathy Lette. Photo: Neale Haynes.
There might be a little sass to close the festival given the line-up for this keynote address. Join Maggie Alderson, Jamila Rizvi, Jane Caro and Kathy Lette for some entertaining anecdotes.
This fun-filled and light-hearted prelude to the CWF 2017 Official After-Party will showcase smarts and literary laughs. Brace yourself for an evening of no-holds-barred hilarity!
What: The 2017 Canberra Writers Festival
When: August 25-27
Where: A variety of venues across Canberra
Tickets: Tickets are on sale now and can be booked online or by calling Ticketek on 132 849