Celebrating authors, books and reading in Perth and Adelaide

March 7, 2018

From Helen Garner to Machiavelli, from Drusilla Modjeska to Leo Tolstoy, audiences at the recent Perth and Adelaide Writers’ Weeks were thrilled to discover the books that changed the lives of some of our leading authors – including Miles Franklin winners Josephine Wilson and Sofie Laguna, Stella Prize winner Heather Rose and former Foreign Minister Gareth Evans.

Both of our This Book Changed My Life sessions in Perth and Adelaide were full to overflowing as our panellists recounted the extraordinary lightbulb moments that their books provided them.

Other panellists were: 2018 Stella Prize longlisted author Claire G Coleman and school student Michelle Loh in Perth, and award-winning authors Rebekah Clarke and Wendy Orr in Adelaide.

The campaign’s aim is to remind people why we love creative things such as books (and songs too) – because so often they can be life-changing.

The Copyright Agency and APRA | AMCOS developed the campaign to remind politicians and policy makers that books, writing and songs are important and that having an effective copyright system in place to support this is critical.

It was launched last year when Australian policy makers were considering adopting American style amendments to our Copyright Act that have the potential to radically reduce the amount of money that authors, publishers and visual artists are paid for use of their work by large education institutions as well as major Australian businesses.

Visitors to Sydney Writers Festival should also be able to watch some of the videos from This Book Changed My Life which will be likely screened before certain sessions.

To take part in the campaign, visit www.changedmylife.com.au

Authors, musicians and other creators filmed to date (with their life-changing books or songs) are:

Alice Pung, The Harp in the South, Ruth Park

Anna FunderAnna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy

Barry JonesWar and Peace, Leo Tolstoy

Chris ShainCalifornia and the West, Edward Weston and Charis Wilson

Emily Havea, The Harry Potter books, J. K Rowling

Hazel Edwards, Storm Boy, Colin Thiele

Isobelle Carmody, The Land of Far-Beyond, Enid Blyton

Jackie French, Three Cheers for the Paraclete, Tom Keneally

Jake Speer, The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame

Jess And Matt, Landslide, Fleetwood Mac

Jill Eddington, A Kindness Cup, Thea Astley

Joe Hildebrand, Great Balls of Fire, Jerry Lee Lewis

Josh Pyke, Waltz #2, Elliott Smith

Luke Jurevicius, Flambards, K. M. Peyton

Matthew Reilly, Jurassic Park, Michael Crichton

Melissa Lucashenko, A Human Pattern, Judith Wright

Michael Robotham, Illywhacker, Peter Carey

Montaigne, How Music Works, David Byrne

Nikki Gemmell, My Brilliant Career, Miles Franklin

Reg Mombassa, The Third Policeman, Flann O’Brien

Richard Roxburgh, My Family and Other Animals, Gerald Durrell

Rove McManus, The Runaway Bunny, Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd

Ruben Meerman, The Better Angels of our Nature, Steven Pinker

Sam Margin, Lay It Down by The Rubens

Tara Moss, Christine by Stephen King

Taka PerryHow to be a Werewolf, Mogwai

Tracey Spicer, Dark Palace, Frank Moorhouse; Year of Wonders Geraldine Brooks; The Secret River, Kate Grenville

Perth Writers Week panellists from left: Heather Rose, Josephine Wilson, Claire G Coleman, Gareth Evans and Michelle Loh. Photo: Sue Nelson

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