Sandcliffe Writers Festival 2014 Programme

August 13, 2014 - 10:00 am 1 Comment




Steve Bishop started investigating Queensland corruption in 1982 for the Sunday Sun soon after arriving in Brisbane after nine years as an investigative reporter in Fleet Street.

Now retired, he covered the Fitzgerald Inquiry and then worked with the reformist Goss Government before becoming Premier Peter Beattie’s principal media advisor. His book, The Most Dangerous Detective has been top of Amazon’s true-crime list since 2013.


Deb Drummond and Janice Teunis grew up without ever knowing their grandfather, Reg Brown. When, as adults, they learned that Reg had died in Boggo Road Prison, where he was serving time for the murder of nineteen-year-old Bronia Armstrong, they needed to know more. The result of their 7-year investigation is Lingering Doubts, a true-crime novel, which, in the light of the work of Stephen Bishop and Matthew Condon, points to an appalling miscarriage of justice that devastated a loving family and literally destroyed an honourable man.


At the age of seventy, Aunty Ruth wrote and published her memoir, Is that you Ruthie? which won the 1998 David Unaipon Award. She followed this with Bittersweet Journey published in 2003, Jack’s Story: the Life and Times of a herbourg Dormitory Boy and Suffer the Children, her first fiction. The ACU has recognised Aunty Ruth’s contributions to Australian literature, Indigenous education and community leadership with an honourary Doctorate.


Jacqueline Husson is a journalist with The Bayside and Northern Suburbs Star. With a Grad. Dip. in Journalism and a B. Social Sciences, she says that her job affords her the privilege of meeting amazing people and sharing their stories with the community.


In 1999, at the Queensland Premier’s Literary Prize, Samuel Wagan Watson won the David Unaipon Award for his collection, Of Muse, Meandering and Midnight. In 2005 he won the NSW Premier’s Kenneth Slessor Prize Poetry Book of the Year for his Smoke Encrypted Whispers, which was recently set to music and performed by the Southern Cross soloists in Melbourne. He was named an Outstanding Contributor to Australian Culture in 2000 and commissioned to write haiku for Japanese astronauts on the International Space Station.


Author of Jason Chen and the Time Banana, Duncan Richardson has written poetry, fiction and educational texts. He teaches Primary School in Brisbane and will be presenting a workshop for Upper-Primary-aged children at Sandcliffe.


Multi-award-winning Children’s author and illlustrator, Peter Carnavas, has had 11 books published. Somewhat in the tradition of Quentin Blake, his enchanting illustrations have beguiled children and adults alike. His 2012 publication, The Children Who Loved Books, has been declared a favourite amongst teachers and librarians. At Sandcliffe, Peter is offering a workshop to adults who want to write and illustrate for children.


Sam has written The Kadaitcha Sung, an acclaimed novel, the highly-praised film, Black Man Down, and the play, Oodgeroo-Bloodline to Country. A man of the Biri Gubba and Munnenjarl nations with blood and family ties to the Kalkadoon & Wik / Mapoon peoples, Sam has been involved in the Black political struggle for the past five decades. He has helped set up legal, health & housing services, travelled extensively as an advocate for his people, and was formerly deputy-director of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies at UQ.


Jay McKee is a regular reviewer for the national magazine, Stage Whispers. He wrote Never Upstaged, the biography of Babette Stephens, and co-wrote the WW2 memoir, Pawn of War, about a front-line German soldier who was a pacifist. Jay is the convenor of the Westerlies writers’ group.


Much-loved writer for Children and Young Adults, James Moloney has written over 40 books and won the Children’s Book Council Book of the Year Award for A Bridge to Wiseman’s Cove and Swashbuckler. A teacher and a teacher-librarian, James now writes full-time in a shed in his Brisbane backyard. On Monday, September 1, James will be talking to students of Bracken Ridge High about the craft of writing and his work.


Grandson of esteemed poet, Oodgeroo of the Noonuccal Tribe, (Kath Walker), Joshua Walker is the leader and songman of the Yulu Burri Ba Dance Troupe. Last year Joshua enthralled the Sandcliffe Writers Festival audience with his explanation of skin lore, or intermarriage, integral to Indigenous Australian culture. Joshua has been invited back to the Sandcliffe writers’ panels to address the topic, “Loving the Australian Landscape.”


Matthew Condon’s latest book, Jacks and Jokers, sequel to best seller, Three Crooked Kings, exposes the corruption and graft that infiltrated every layer of Queensland society under Terry Lewis’s reign as Police Commissioner during the premiership of Joh Bjelke-Petersen. A Night at the Pink Poodle and The Lulu Magnet won Steele Rudd Awards for Short Fiction and The Trout Opera was shortlisted for the Qld Premier’s Fiction Prize Fiction. Matt is a features writer for The Courier-Mail.


Jackie Huggins has written two books, Auntie Rita, and Sistergirl, plus numerous articles published in academic and non-academic journals. She has mentored many Aboriginal writers, plays a big part in the Indigenous literature world, and is also the Patron of the First Nations Aboriginal Writer’s Network of Australia. In 2007, Jackie was nominated the UQ Alumnus of the Year.


Susan Johnson’s nine books have been nominated for many awards including the Association for the Study of Australian Literature Gold Medal and the Miles Franklin Award. In 2012, her ground-breaking novel, My Hundred Lovers, was published. She gave the 2011 Ray Mathew Lecture at the National Library of Australia A writer for Qweekend magazine, her website and blog is


Jillian Boyd was born and raised on Thursday Island in the Torres Strait. She is an emerging writer who launched her work as one of two winners of the 2012 Black & Write! Fellowship competition with her children’s story, Bakir and Bi. Jillian is passionate about preserving and promoting her culture and hopes to educate and empower others through her stories and poetry.


Kristina Olsson’s novel, The China Garden, won the 2010 Barbara Jefferis Award and her most recent book, Boy, Lost, the story of the theft of her mother’s first child, won the Queensland Literary Award for non-fiction, the NSW Premier’s award for non-fiction and The Kibble Literary Award for Women’s Life Writing. It was also runner-up to the Stella Literary Prize. Kris returns to Sandcliffe on Sunday, August 31, 2014.

The Convenors:


Though a writer herself, Adele Moy has worked mainly in arts administration. Formerly a State government literature officer, Adele helped organise the first Writers’ Train travelling from Brisbane to Charleville. She was appointed the inaugural Director of the NSW Writers Centre and was the executive officer of Women in Film and Television, Queensland (WIFT). Join her on the Sandcliffe Writers Festival Facebook page.


Writer, teacher and journalist, Cheryl Jorgensen, has won several awards for her fiction novels and has had a film based on one of her non-fictions, an account of the Westbrook Boys’ Reformatory. Cheryl has an MPhil in Creative Writing from UQ and a website you can visit to offer comments and suggestions about the Sandcliffe Writers Festival.

One Response to “Sandcliffe Writers Festival 2014 Programme”

  1. Cheryl Says:

    Hello Gloria,
    Just come along on Sunday, no need to book. We start at 1.30pm, so to get the seat you want in the lovely refurbished Sandgate Town Hall, suggest you get there about 1.00pm.
    Looking forward to seeing you there.
    Best wishes,

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