their story + my story + her story + his story +
our story + their story + my story + her story +
+ my story + her story +
his story + our story + your story +
our story + her story + my story
In Apollo Bay, we gather, read, write, converse, learn, and create on Gadubanud country. The traditional owners of this land are the original storytellers and we acknowledge them, paying our respects to elders past, present and emerging. WordFest looks forward to the day when indigenous words are woven into the Australian lexicon, celebrating the culturally rich, unique, and continuous voice that First Nations people contribute to our national story.
ISince 1994, we’ve been gathering as a town under one roof in winter to listen to Australian writers speak about their craft. This event was started by Fiona Nelson in conjunction with Apollo Bay Arts and became known as Warm Winter Words. A cosy Sunday afternoon event, on the last weekend in July, to discuss contemporary books and writing. The hot coals were transferred to Jane Gross, who kept the words and writers coming for over two decades, gathering in cafes and pubs around town. In 2016, Jane handed the reins to Pete Mawhinney, and Apollo Bay Writers Festival was born: a weekend-long programme encompassing Warm Winter Words. Still the last weekend of July, still enjoying warming words in winter but expanded to include a spoken word evening, community debate, and an offering of writing workshops. In 2019, as Pete’s creative projects multiplied, he stepped aside to allow a collective of local women to reimagine the weekend as Apollo Bay WordFest.
Celebrating words in all their forms and genres, Apollo Bay WordFest is spoken words, debated words, workshopped words, and Warm Winter Words. For nearly three decades, the endeavor of bringing considered and thought-provoking words to Apollo Bay has been generously supported by Writers Victoria and the Colac-Otway Shire.
The writers who’ve joined us over the years;
David Astle · Emily Zoe Baker · Desh Balasubramaniam · Catherine Bateson · Carmel Bird · Sonia Borg · Mark Brandi · Kevin Brophy · Jeff Brownrigg · Julian Burnside · Susan Carland · Isobelle Carmody · Belinda Castles · John Clarke · Alison Corke · Steve Cromb · Robin de Crespigny · Diane de Vere · Greg Day · Catherine Deveny · Barry Dickins · Mick Dodson · Tenpa Dugdak · Bruce Elder · Adrian Feldmann · Martin Flanagan · Clementine Ford · Lisa Gorton · Kerry Greenwood · Terry Jaensch · Paul Jennings · Kooshyar Karimi · Jenny Kemp · Graeme Kinross-Smith · Lee Koffman · Heather Le Griffon · Shelton Lea · Doris Leadbetter · Michael Leunig · Myron Lysenko · Meme McDonald · Shayne Maloney · John Marsden · Phillipa Martin · Alex Miller · Robynne Nelson · Catherine Noske · Paddy O’Reilly · Bruce Pascoe · Sue-Ann Post · Bram Presser · Alice Pung · Anouk Ride · Bev Roberts · Craig Robertson · Robyn Rowland · Eva Sallis · Angela Savage · Claire Scobie · Jock Serong · Anna Snoekstra · Janis Spehr · Geoff Swayne · Les Twentyman · Nolan Tyrell · Chi Vu · Chris Wallace-Crabbe · Charlie Ward · Penny Woodward · Alexis Wright · Nadia Wheatley · Arnold Zable · Matt Zurbo