Three major writers from the Illawarra will be talking about place in their creative work, professional and personal lives as part of the Creative Dialogues Program in the lead up to Wollongong’s Viva La Gong 2011.
The August Creative Dialogue will feature Wollongong Writers Ron Pretty, Shady Cosgrove and Jeff Apter, speaking about their connections with Wollongong and the impressions of physical, cultural and spiritual environments and how they have detailed this in their books of poetry, biography and memoir.
Manager Community Cultural and Library Services Jenny Thompson said the Creative Dialogue is a chance for writers to express their views on issues that influence their writing and the ways in which the natural beauty and unique culture of our city inspires their creative output.
“We are hoping that the community makes the most of this fantastic opportunity to meet some of our high profile local authors and we are encouraging everyone in the city to get involved in the other events leading up to Viva La Gong 2011. Viva brings free and accessible cultural experiences to the city, culminating in our big festival day on 12 November and Viva has really grown in status and scope over the last couple of years,” Ms Thompson said.
The Creative Dialogue will be held at the Wollongong City Gallery on Thursday 11 August from 6.30pm. All members of the community are encouraged to come along to hear fascinating tales from these well regarded local authors. Robbie Collins, currently Head of Shoalhaven Campus, University of Wollongong, will chair this forum.
Ron Pretty has published seven books of poetry, the most recent being Postcards from the Centre, published in July 2010. He has also written about writing in Creating Poetry, which was revised and reissued in 2002. He won the NSW Premier’s Special Prize for services to literature in 2001 and received an AM for services to Australian literature in 2002.
With writing interests in fiction and non-fiction, Dr Shady Cosgrove is currently writing a novel, The Necessary Tango, set in Argentina, that explores themes of hope, survival and forgiveness. Her creative non-fiction manuscript, She Played Elvis, about family, pilgrimage and nationhood, was shortlisted for the 2007 Australian/Vogel Literary Prize and was published in 2009. Her short fiction has been published in Southerly, Antipodes, Hecate and Best Australian Short Stories 2006.
In a career spanning more than 20 years Apter has written 10 commercially and critically acclaimed biographies, and has contributed to such publications as Rolling Stone, GQ, The Bulletin, Australian Hi-Fi and the renowned website, Rock’s Back Pages. His most recent book, released in June 2010, is Together Alone: The Story of the Finn Brothers.
For more information on the Creative Dialogue or Viva La Gong, you can you can visit Council’s Arts and Culture webpage.