Over two nights, 11 local and interstate poets perform @ Hadley’s.

Omar Sakr, Jessica Wilkinson, puralia meenamatta (Jim Everett), Anne Collins, Ben Walter, and Young Dawkins on the Friday, hosted by Toby Fitch; and Omar Sakr, Jessica Wilkinson, Karen Knight, Pete Hay, Kristen Lang, Michael Stratford Hutch, and Toby Fitch on the Saturday, hosted by Cameron Hindrum.

Friday September 15, 9–10pm.

Saturday September 16, 8.30–9.30pm.

John Webb Room, Hadley’s Orient Hotel

Go to Tasmanian Readers and Writers Festival website to book.

See more information on Tasmanian Readers and Writers Festival website.

Price: $15/$10.

The Tasmanian Writers & Readers Festival, run biennially by the Tasmanian Writers Centre, unites writers and readers from across the state and Australia through masterclasses, discussion forums, spoken word events, children’s programs and more.

The festival occupies various spaces throughout the historic Hadley’s Orient Hotel and encourages all members of the community to engage with their fellow readers and writers through the power of storytelling.

September 14 – 17, 2017, book now: www.taswrf.org

The TASMANIAN WRITERS & READERS FESTIVAL wishes to acknowledge the Mouheneenner people the traditional owners and custodians of the land upon which this festival takes place. We recognise the value of continuing Aboriginal knowledge and cultural practice, which informs our understandings of history, culture, science and environment; and in supporting the development of the Tasmanian community.

Anne Collins’ most recent book is The Language of Water (Walleah Press, 2014). Besides three earlier collections of poetry, her other work is published in journals, newspapers and anthologies. Anne also works as a free-lance writer and editor for organisations and individuals.

Ben Walter is a Tasmanian poet and writer of lyrical and experimental fiction, whose creative work has appeared in literary journals including Island magazine, Griffith ReviewFamous ReporterCordite, Meanjin, The Lifted Brow and Overland. He is the author of the melancholy wilderness story, Below Tree Level, and editor of the award-winning craft/fiction anthology, I Sleep in Haysheds and Corners (2011). Ben was the Australia Council Artist in Residence at St. Michaels Collegiate in 2016 and was digital Writer in Residence for Writing Australia in 2014. He guest-edited Overland’s special anti-/dis-/un-Australian fiction issue in 2016, and is the editor of the Tasmanian literary journal Picton Grange Quarterly Review, which is circulated on social media. Ben is also the editor of Seven Stories (2017), an anthology of Tasmanian fiction, featuring the winners of the National Literary Award for a group or collective of writers. https://ben-walter.com

Jessica L. Wilkinson is a poet, essayist, critic, editor and performer, whose poems have appeared in books, newspapers and local and international journals and anthologies. Her first book, marionette: a biography of miss marion davies (2012), was shortlisted for the Kenneth Slessor Poetry Prize in the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Her second book, Suite for Percy Grainger (2014), an experimental poetic work on the life of one of Australia’s most innovative musicians and composers, won ABR’s International Peter Porter Poetry Prize. Jessica is currently working on a third poetic biography, on the life and work of choreographer George Balanchine, with a side section on Australian prima ballerina Lucette Aldous. Jessica is the founding editor of Rabbit: a journal for nonfiction poetry. In 2017-18, Jessica and Simon will release an album of Marionette, supported by funding from Creative Victoria. Jessica holds a PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Melbourne and teaches Creative Writing at RMIT University.

Jim Everett, who also goes by his Aboriginal name, puralia meenamatta, is a writer of poetry, plays, political and academic papers and short stories. Jim’s writing has been featured in a range of major anthologies. He wrote, directed, produced and acted in his first play, We Are Survivors, in 1984 and has since worked as producer on a range of documentaries. Jim is of Aboriginal heritage and is from the clan plangermairreenner of the Ben Lomond people, a clan of the Cape Portland nation in northeast Tasmania. He has visited many remote Aboriginal communities across Australia, has a long history in the public service, working in Aboriginal Affairs and more than 50 years of involvement in the Aboriginal struggle. He lives on Cape Barren Island, where he writes and continues his contribution to Australia’s arts and culture. Jim was a guest speaker at the Tasmanian Writers’ Centre’s Hidden Stories event, which brought together some of the most respected Aboriginal writers and artists to celebrate and speak about the stories of Aboriginal culture and heritage.


Omar Sakr is an Arab-Australian poet whose debut collection of poetry, These Wild Houses, was released in 2017. Omar’s poetry has been published in English, Arabic and Spanish in numerous journals and anthologies, including the Griffith Review, Wildness, Overland, Meanjin, Island, Peril, Cordite Poetry Review, The Best Australian Poems 2016Antic, and Circulo de Poesía. His prose has also been widely published, including in The Saturday PaperThe GuardianDaily LifeKill Your DarlingsGoing Down SwingingArcherJunkee, and SBS Life, among others. He was runner-up in the 2015 Judith Wright Poetry Prize, shortlisted for the 2015 ACU Poetry Prize and the 2014 Overland Story Wine Prize, and is a recipient of the 2017 Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowships. He is also the poetry editor of The Lifted Brow, an Australian quarterly print magazine, which publishes works by a diverse range of established and emerging writers. omarsakr.com

Young Dawkins is a prize-winning poet who has published and performed his work in the US, Britain and Australia. After obtaining his Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Dartmouth College, New Hampshire in 1987, Young participated in the Frost Place Summer Festival of Poetry and was awarded the 2001 Poetry Prize by the Seacoast Writers Association. In 2005, he was honoured with the creation of a Graduate Creative Writing Prize in his name at the University of New Hampshire. His debut poetry collection, The Lilac Thief, was published in 2009 and the title poem was included in the 2008 Poets’ Guide to New Hampshire. Young was the 2011 Scottish Slam Poetry Champion, and in June 2011 represented Scotland at the Slam Poetry World Cup in Paris. In August 2011, he performed a week-long solo show at the Edinburgh Fringe, and he organised and hosted the BBC Edinburgh Fringe Poetry Slam from 2011-2013. Now based in Tasmania, Young was the 2014 Hobart City Slam Champion, and a guest poet at the 2016 Tasmanian Poetry Festival.

Toby Fitch is an Australian poet, editor, bookseller and teacher of creative writing. His published works include his first full-length collection, Rawshock (2012), which won the 2012 Grace Leven Prize for Poetry. In Rawshock, Toby used Rorschach inkblots as metaphors to create a collection of poems described as bringing a ‘new vision and shape to Australian poetry’. His other collections include Jerilderies (2014), and The Bloomin’ Notions of Other & Beau (2016)—a book of antipodes, or inversions, of the prose poems collected in Rimbaud’s Les Illuminations. He has also published two poetry chapbooks—Quarrels and Everyday Static. Toby is the poetry editor of the Overland literary journal, and the program director for the Australian Poets Festival. He is the organiser and host of the monthly Sappho Poetry Reading Nights Series—a Sydney institution held at Sappho Books, Café and Bar, which has featured emerging and established poets including Les Murray, Gig Ryan, David Malouf and Judith Beveridge. Toby also works as a bookseller, and teaches creative writing at the University of Sydney. He lives in Sydney with his partner and two children.


Karen Knight is a Tasmanian poet whose work has been widely published since the early 1960s. She has written four collections of poetry—her most recent, Postcards from the Asylum (2008), won the 2005 Dorothy Hewett Flagship Fellowship Award, the 2007 Arts ACT Alec Bolton Award and the 2011 University of Tasmania Prize (Tasmania Book Awards) for best book by a Tasmanian publisher.


Cameron Hindrum is a writer, poet, playwright and teacher, based in Launceston. Since 2003, he has coordinated the annual Tasmanian Poetry Festival, and for nearly 20 years he has organised spoken word events, readings, literary events and poetry slams for a variety of organisations, including the Australian Poetry Slam, Tasmanian Living Writers Week, the Tasmanian Writers Centre and the Junction Arts Festival. Cameron’s novel, The Blue Cathedral (Forty South Books), was published in late 2011, and this was followed in 2012 with two volumes of poetry, Private Conversations Volumes 1 and 2 (Another Lost Shark and Walleah Press respectively). He completed an MA in Creative Writing in 2013, a residential fellowship at Varuna in NSW during January 2016, and is continuing work on a Doctorate in Creative Arts through the University of Wollongong, for which he is working on his second novel.

Kristen Lang is a Tasmanian poet whose collections include SkinNotes (2017) and the forthcoming, The Weight of Light (2017). Her earlier publication, Let me show you a ripple (2008), includes poetry and photography and followed in part from her PhD, awarded by Deakin University in 2004. She won the ACU Prize for Poetry in 2015 and was awarded second place in the Tom Collins Poetry Prize in 2017.

Michael Stratford Hutch is a Tasmanian poet and emerging artist. They began writing at the age of 15, and have been shortlisted for a number of national writing awards, including the 2015 John Marsden/Hachette Australian Young Writers Prize. They were most recently published for the first time in Voiceworks #103: Bang. In 2016, Michael was a resident poet for the Tasmanian Writers Centre Hot Desk Residencies.

Pete Hay is a Tasmanian poet, scholar and activist who has published six volumes of poetry; one of these as editor, and one, Last Days of the Mill, in collaboration with a visual artist (this book won the People’s Choice Award at the 2013 Tasmanian Book Prize). His most recent books of poetry are Girl Reading Lorca (Picaro, 2015) and Physick (Shoestring, 2016). He also writes personal essays (collected in 2002 as Vandiemonian Essays, with a second volume planned for 2017), commentary (including a stint as a newspaper columnist), and history.