The 2022 Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival is a celebration of storytelling, with activities and special events for book lovers of all ages.

The Margaret River Readers & Writers Festival kicks off from 13 to 15 May, showcasing incredible storytellers, creative thinkers and artists from our own backyard, as well as special guests from interstate and abroad.

Here’s the story so far.

A Literary Extravaganza

This year, the program is the perfect mashup of emerging and established authors, who will share their fascinating stories, writing tips and creative processes with book lovers from all over Western Australia, and beyond.

There’ll be plenty of hands-on workshops with authors, as well as art installations, networking events and free activities for the kids. Not to mention some exciting surprises that level up the Festival experience in the best possible way.

These special events will happen all over the Margaret River Region, with Margaret River HEART as the Festival hub. Festival and Creative Director Sian Baker told us more.

“The Festival will be a fabulous hybrid experience this year, which means interstate and international guests will be joining us through the magic of zoom, beamed to us on stage,” she says.

According to Baker, every event will feature an onstage host, who will guide question time with the authors. Plus state-of-the-art audience cams, which allow interstate and overseas authors to easily interact with people in the audience.

The Readers and Writers Stage will be dedicated to the incredible talent of our Western Australian authors and speakers, who will appear live and in person.

Hello Busselton

This year, the Festival heads to Busselton, with a brand new satellite event starring free and low cost creative activities for kids and grownups. Busselton Special Edition will take place at Shelter Brewery, in partnership with local libraries and Dymocks Bookshop.

This special satellite event will feature a number of author ‘in conversation’ events, as well as a dinner, writers networking opportunities and workshops that will be run in the Busselton and Dunsborough libraries.

There’ll also be a morning of free family fun, with events for kids that celebrate the magic of storytelling, as well as a bunch of activities custom made for max fun. Head to the Festival Facebook page for updates on Busselton Special Edition.

Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival - Supplied

Fringe Word

An epic two-week long arts program is set to launch this year at the Festival, which celebrates the words and storytelling of artists from diverse cultural and social economic backgrounds.

FRINGE WORD showcases the ground-breaking talents of three emerging artists, who will share their stories through diverse and cultural artworks at much-loved venues around the Margaret River Region.

FRINGE WORD creates a space for emerging artists from diverse backgrounds to showcase their artworks, while giving them the opportunity to gather valuable feedback from art lovers visiting and living in the region.

This special program happens from 9 to 20 May.

The Storytelling Snug For Kids at the Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival - Supplied

Storytime For Kids

The Storytelling Snug is a free activity that runs over the Festival weekend at Margaret River HEART. Kids of all ages are welcome to come along, and soak up stories from magnificent children’s authors.

This family friendly event is a celebration of storytelling for young people, with fun and interactive sessions designed to inspire creativity and help kids embrace a love for reading and writing that lasts a lifetime.

Storytellers include Frané Lessac, the author and illustrator of 50 award-winning children’s book, which have been published all around the world. Her amazing books include The Legend of Moondyne Joe, Native Nations and her latest book, Ancient Wonders.

Steve Heron, whose picture book Ling Li’s Lantern recently won the 2021 Northern Lights Books Awards, will join the Storytelling Snug, as well as award-winning author and illustrator Kylie Howarth and Grumbelina author, Esther Krogdahl.

To be a part of the Storytelling Snug, simply sign up on the day.

The stage at the Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival - Supplied

COVID Update

Last year, Baker and her Festival team was able to deliver a wonderful experience for book lovers, while making sure precautions were in place to protect everyone who attended. This year is no different.

“I am excited about the opportunity to run a festival in COVID times again, as it forces you to innovate and try things in a different way,” she says.

“Especially at a time when authors aren’t able to easily talk – it’s great to help promote authors and help them sell their books.”

Baker says the Festival will be following WA Government health advice, which means everyone who attends must show a valid vaccination certificate and sign in with the SafeWA or ServiceWA apps.

These protocols are in place for everyone who wants to attend the Festival in person, including the authors, presenters, staff and volunteers. For up to date information on the WA Government’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, please head to the WA Gov website.

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Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival - Supplied

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