Perth Festival and Writing WA announce reimagined Writers Weekend

Writing WA and Perth Festival have announced the first highlights of the highly-anticipated 2024 Perth Festival Writers Weekend, running from Friday, February 23 to Sunday, February 25 at the State Library of Western Australia.

Finding a new home at the centrally-located State Library of WA, and with Perth Festival and Writing WA joining forces for the first time, Perth Festival Writers Weekend promises to be a literary feast for readers and writers alike, bringing together a remarkable line-up of local and international talent to celebrate the written word.

The program features two binge-worthy days of inspiring sessions across every form and genre – from popular fiction and children’s literature to essays and hard-nosed journalism – with guests including Laura Jean McKay, Brenda Matthews, Jack Collard, Isobel Bevis, Christos Tsiolkas, Deborah Conway, Jane Smiley, Mok Zining, Natasha Lester, Rachael Johns, Holden Sheppard, Madison Godfrey, A.J. Betts and more.

If friendly, relaxed panel discussions are your thing, you’ll love Saturday’s cosy Convergence program, where the festival brings together authors with something in common to riff on a theme.

If you’re looking for something with a bit more bite and frisson, Sunday’s Divergence program is for you, as writers and poets from opposing camps engage in lively discussion and debate around identity, genre, politics and more.

Each day of the weekend features six panel sessions alongside a series of workshops. In addition, you can drop into the State Library’s theatre for documentary screenings and extra sessions, let the kids explore the safe, staffed Story Time space, enjoy a snack or drink or buy a book from Boffins’ pop-up bookstore.

PFWW 2024’s highlights include:

• Friday, February 23: Writers Weekend Opening Night with Deborah Conway

• Sunday, February 25: Writers Weekend Closing Event with Jane Smiley

• Saturday, February 24: Telling Tales with James Foley, Kylie Howarth and Rebecca M Newman

• Saturday, February 24: Leading Ladies with Natasha Lester, Rachael Johns and Sasha Wasley

• Saturday, February 24: First Voices with Isobel Bevis, Brenda Mathews and Jack Collard

• Sunday, February 25: Open Books, Open Minds with Deborah Conway, Alisha Aitken-Radburn and Peter Dowding

• Sunday, February 25: On Beauty with Christos Tsiolkas, Holden Sheppard, A.J. Betts and Madison Godfrey

• Saturday, February 24: Writing Shorts: Character and Dialogue in Short Story with Laura Jean McKay

• Saturday, February 24: The Preoccupation: Totems, Motifs and Metaphors in Narrative Non-Fiction with Mok Zining

Perth Festival Writers Weekend runs at the State Library of Western Australia from Friday, February 23 to Sunday, February 25, 2024. The full Writers Weekend Program will be announced on Wednesday, December 6, 2023. Tickets are on sale now from