Take note: this isn't an article trying to convince you of the virtues of Canberra. (We've already got The New York Times taking care of that.)
What this is about is an upcoming writers festival in Canberra — the first of its kind in five years.
Put down your pens, pick them up again and say hello to Noted: a writers festival with an experimental bent, coming to you in March.
What can you expect from the new festival kids on the block? Here are five things you can look forward to at Noted Festival.
— Noted Festival (@NotedFestival) January 14, 2015
1. LIVE EVENTS
We’ll have more events than you can point a selfie stick at.
We're especially excited to be bringing Lithop to Canberra, where you can discover notable writers and performers as you go from one watering hole to another. You’ll find storytelling, games and rowdy trivia in three separate venues in the centre of Canberra, with pop-up pit-stops along the way.
2. INTERACTIVE STUFF
Can't make it to the festival in March?
Don't worry, we've got you covered. With our digital stream ('Notification'), you'll be able to explore (and even take part in) a number of events online. Think Twitter stories, Skype poetry, an Agony Aunty-type blog and digital zines.
You can also browse an online exhibition where multimedia art meets text, and the Scissors Paper Pen's Papercuts team will be also be providing a wrap-up of events.
YAY now I can finally tell you all that I will be one of the artists in this year's @NotedFestival in Canberra! My first writers' festival!
— Kate Iselin (@kateiselin) January 14, 2015
— lisa dempster (@lisadempster) January 31, 2015
3. WORKSHOPS AND ‘ASK ME ANYTHING’ PANELS
The workshops will be your opportunity to dig a bit deeper and learn first-hand from industry experts. The capped workshops,* presented in conjunction with the ACT Writers Centre, will feature anything from poetry, radio-play production, writing for TV and alternative text.
Don't think you can make a workshop? That's OK, too. You can pick the brains of some of our venerable festival artists at an 'Ask Me Anything'. The AMAs will be a series of facilitated Q&A sessions, where you can ask experts anything** relating to publishing/editing, performing, and the practicalities of writing.
*Keen? We'll be putting up details soon on how you can register.
**Well, maybe not anything. Unless the facilitator is an expert in confessional writing.
4. LIKE-MINDED FOLK
Of course, one of the best parts of going to a festival is meeting new people. Between the Lithop, workshops and pop-up events, there'll be plenty of time to hang out with fellow word nerds.
Our friends at You Are Here festival will also be running events that weekend, so keep an eye on their program too.
Where should I place my Twitter Mention Reach on my book application?
— WritersFestQuestions (@WFQuestions) October 12, 2014
5. DID WE MENTION IT'S FREE?
Yep. All you need to do is front the cost of a bus/plane/train/segway ticket to Our Fair Territory (if you don't already live here).
If you’re in Canberra the weekend of Noted and are interested in volunteering, get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
See you at Noted!
Farz Edraki is a Noted Festival producer, and former podcast contributor to Writers Bloc. Noted Festival runs from 20-22 March 2015, at various locations in Canberra. To see the program and for more details, head to the website.
Images: Yasmin Masri.
Sam van Zweden was Writers Bloc’s Online Editor from 2013 - 2015. A Melbourne-based writer and blogger, her work has appeared in The Big Issue, Voiceworks, Tincture Journal, Page seventeen, and others. She’s passionate about creative nonfiction and cross stitch. She tweets @samvanzweden.