Reading for Writers

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A picture of an open book

08 August 2018 - 6:00 to 05 December 2018 - 8:00
Paddy O'Reilly
A book club for writers curated by author Paddy O'Reilly. Each month, a writer will discuss a work that has influenced their own writing, paying attention to the technical elements of the writing.

Participants are encouraged to read the nominated work before the session and join the discussion.

Wednesdays 8 August, 5 September, 3 October, 7 November, 5 December, 6pm – 8pm


August - Cate Kennedy 

Reading: Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

Cate Kennedy lives in regional Victoria and writes fiction, non-fiction and poetry. She is studying for her PhD and teaches at Pacific University in Oregon at their low-residency masters program as a fiction advisor, but is still no closer to unravelling the mysterious power of Elizabeth Strout’s interlinked short story collection Olive Kitteridge, and no closer to replicating it in her own half-finished ‘novel in stories’.

September - Carrie Tiffany

Reading: Wildlife by Richard Ford

This short, but exquisitely paced early novel from Richard Ford is the story of a sixteen year old boy whose father leaves for Canada to fight a threatening wildfire. The real danger though comes from within the family, from the essential self-destructiveness of love and lust.

Carrie Tiffany was born in West Yorkshire, spent her early twenties working as a park ranger in Central Australia and now lives in Melbourne. Her two novels Everyman’s Rules for Scientific Living and Mateship with Birds are set in rural Australia. Her third novel, Exploded View, will be published by Text in early 2019.

October - Ellen van Neerven

Reading: Future Home of the Living God by Louise Erdrich

Evolution has gone into reverse, birth rates are dropping and fertile women are held prisoner – a horribly plausible story about human survival.

Ellen van Neerven is a Mununjali Yugambeh writer from South East Queensland. Ellen's books include Heat and Light (UQP, 2014) and Comfort Food (UQP, 2014).

November - Lucy Treloar 

Reading: Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson

Housekeeping is the story of Ruth and Lucille, orphans growing up in the desolate town of Fingerbone, Idaho, who find themselves in the care of their aunt, Sylvie, an enigmatic drifter. Steeped in the bleak and icy landscape around them, the girls’ struggle towards adulthood is powerfully depicted in this novel about loss, loneliness and transience.

Lucy Treloar is a writer, creative writing teacher, and artist-in-residence at Melbourne’s Meat Market. Her multi award-winning debut novel, Salt Creek, was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award and the UK’s Walter Scott Prize, and was published internationally in 2017 to critical acclaim. Her short fiction has been published in Sleepers, Overland, Seizure and Best Australian Stories, and her non-fiction in Meanjin, The Age, and Womankind among others. Lucy lives in Melbourne with her family, and is working on her second novel and a PhD.

December - Bella Li 

Reading: The Collected Works of Billy the Kid by Michael Ondaatje

First published in 1970, Michael Ondaatje's The Collected Works of Billy the Kid is a genre-mixing text that draws upon a range of disparate sources—contemporary accounts, photographs, dime novels—to re-animate and re-imagine the figure of the American outlaw Billy the Kid. Combining poetry, prose and images, all loosely sequenced into a narrative that works both alongside and against the grain of myth and history, Ondaatje's Collected Works was one of the seminal books that helped shaped my thinking about hybridity, and the ways in which writers engage with other texts, questions of authenticity, and the world beyond their own experience.

Bella Li is the author of Argosy (Vagabond Press, 2017), which won the 2018 Victorian Premier's Literary Award for Poetry and the 2018 NSW Premier's Literary Award for Poetry. Her latest book is Lost Lake (Vagabond Press, 2018).


About Paddy O'Reilly

Paddy O’Reilly is the author of three novels, a novella and three short story collections. Her work has won awards and been published in Australia, the UK and the USA. Her latest book is ‘Peripheral Vision’, a short story collection (UQP, 2015).

Registration fee
Member $ 220.00
Concession Member $ 180.00
Non-Member $ 280.00
Donation $ 1.00

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