In late June of 2024, the dusty trails of the Australian Outback will welcome a new literary adventurer: Lyndall Hill, the creator and curator of Word Fest Toowoomba’. Lyndall has been extended an invitation to the Australian Outback Writers Festival, set to take place from June 20th to 22nd in the progressive town of Winton. This year’s theme, fittingly, revolves around the essence of the Outback, promising a celebration of Australia’s rich storytelling heritage amidst the iconic setting of the Waltzing Matilda Centre.
The Outback Writers Festival Inc., a non-profit organization established in 2015, stands as a beacon for promoting Australian literature, particularly narratives rooted in the vast and diverse landscapes of the Outback. With a set of admirable objectives, the festival aims not only to entertain but also to educate, inspire, and connect communities:
The festival commits to an annual rendezvous in Winton, serving as a hub for writers, readers, and enthusiasts to converge and share their passion for Australian stories. By engaging writers and readers alike, the festival endeavours to foster a deeper appreciation for Australian narratives, nurturing a culture that champions the diverse voices and experiences within the literary landscape.
One of the festival’s noble missions is to encourage literacy and storytelling among rural and indigenous children, recognising the transformative power of literature in shaping young minds and bridging cultural divides, but beyond its literary endeavours, the festival serves as a platform to spotlight the Outback as a significant tourism destination, inviting both domestic and international visitors to explore its rugged beauty and rich history. Through storytelling, the festival pays homage to the deep-rooted history and cultural tapestry of the Outback, honouring First Nations heritage and the resilience of generations past and present who have walked these lands.
Lyndall Hill’s anticipation is building, as she eagerly awaits the crisp Outback nights and the promise of festival fun. Her journey from Toowoomba to the serene landscapes of Winton is not just a physical one; it symbolises a seamless transition from one chapter of literary exploration to the next. Accompanied by her partner, Murray, Lyndall envisions a road trip punctuated by moments of reflection and inspiration, fueling her passion for storytelling, creativity and community engagement.
As Lyndall prepares to embark on this new adventure, she carries with her the spirit of Word Fest and the values it represents: inclusivity, creativity, and a profound appreciation for the power of words to unite and transform. In Winton, amidst the red earth and vast horizons, Lyndall Hill will find herself among kindred spirits, bound by a shared love for the Outback and the stories that echo across its timeless landscapes.
As the Australian Outback Writers Festival draws near, all eyes turn to Winton, where a new chapter in the story of Australian literature is waiting to unfold, along with the passionate vision of Lyndall this will be a remarkable event.
As a Wordsmith and Director of Word Fest Toowoomba, Lyndall has written a Secondary School textbook (OUP); published multicultural recipe books, a collection of high profile Toowoomba identities and helped others through the self-publishing process. From a Poetry Slam in a boxing ring, Literary Lunches, Author Expos, Storytelling Under the Stars, writingworkshops in train carriages to panels, podcasts and organisations’ histories and giving anything a go, she writes business blogs and applications under MollyB Blogging and personal travel blogs under Travlyn.
Thanks to the generous support of KC Strategic Media Services, Cracker Print and Paper, and All Star Brokers Insurance, our second recipe book, More Tastes of Toowoomba will soon be launching mouth-watering tastes from our wonderful multicultural community.
Save the Date
At this point we hope to launch it on Saturday 24th February in the Courtyard at the Rowes Complex near Ruby Lane Coffee and Flowers, hosted by MosaicHues. * Please save the date.
Next year’s theme is Mother. This year’s parade was such a success, we can’t wait to see the designs that will be on display! We want to see reloved, remade, reused, recycled, reworked, refashioned, recast, revised, redone, reforged, refitted … you get the picture! To link in with Wordfest’s 2024 theme of Script to Stage, we will be asking that each garment has a story/script to accompany it on stage. To assist with covering costs, there will be a small fee of $5 per entry.
16 March at DownsSteam Tourist Railway and Museum, Drayton
About Michael Burge: Michael Burge is a journalist, author and artist who lives at Deepwater on Ngarabal Country in the New England region of NSW. His debut novel Tank Water is a coming-of-age crime thriller set in the bush and was released by MidnightSun Publishing. His non-fiction debut Questionable Deeds: Making a stand for equal love (High Country Books) lifted the lid on familial, institutional and government homophobia in Australia.
Michael co-manages The Makers Shed, a creative hub in Glen Innes. Browse his books in his online bookshop and view his artwork at his online art gallery. He is director of High Country Books. A graduate of Australia’s National Institute of Dramatic Art, Michael was touring co-ordinator for Arts North West.
In a series of hard-hitting articles for Guardian Australia, Margo Kingston’s NoFibs and Gay Star News, Michael’s journalism has always covered issues of equality, LGBTIQA+ history, popular culture, politics and pathways for independent artists and writers. He has also edited and written for Fairfax Media, Australian Community Media, Intermedia, United News & Media UK and News Corporation. His article ‘Backwards to Bourke: Bulldust about Gays in the Bush’ was published internationally in the Journal of Australian Studies.
For more detail on his work history check out his LinkedIn profile.
The workshop will be held on site at DownsSteam Museum, which is located at the historic Drayton railway station and features a range of historic carriages, it’s very unique dreamtime carriage and a number of operational locomotives. DownsSteam are planning to have day-trip train journeys operating in the very near future.
Cost of workshop will be dependent on number of participants, but cost will include venue, catering and presenter fees. A very unique opportunity to get your writing on board and on track!
27 January at Mouse Proof Brewery, Brook Street, Toowoomba
Please keep your holiday spirit running high on 27th January at Mouse Proof Brewery, Brook Street.
With 10 Punk Rock Bands playing between 11am and 11pm, including our chart topping local band Kathleen Turner Overdrive, plus profiling and partnering by Word Fest Toowoomba and Daniel Blades with his thought-provoking art providing the backdrop for the bands; and an outdoor artisan market and Storytelling Under the Stars you will be highly entertained.
Everyday Was Chooseday, is a book that walks the reader along the journey with the intrepid motor-home adventurers, Gordon and Aileen Bradley, as they travelled Australia’s roads for almost 7 years.
It provides actual practical experiences and travel advice, plus maps that match the Australia-wide routes travelled. As the pages turn, the reader finds personal anecdotes related to age and illness challenges, events faced in everyday life, the benefits of a practical common-sense approach, humorous anecdotes and useful tips for potential travellers to avoid pitfalls.
Deciding that flexibility achieved their desired relaxed lifestyle, as well, it increased opportunities to maximise finding and exploring Australian treasures at their leisure. Taking time to appreciate the gems they stumbled across, meant choosing to let go of rigid plans and assumptions and decide each day was in fact a Chooseday.
The story follows how it started the trials and tribulations of full time life on the road and how it ended. It is a gratifying read for virtual armchair travellers, trip planners, history buffs, photographers, nature lovers or those who just simply like a good yarn with a few laughs.
You are Invited to the BOOK LAUNCH of Aileen Bradley’s:
Everyday was a Chooseday
at Cobb and Co Museum
Tuesday (Chooseday) 19 December at 10 am for Morning Tea and meeting and hearing author Aileen
Book Signing and Sales – Great Christmas Gift! RSVP for catering 14 December to email@example.com or 0447360349