Celebrating Australian Writing

It’s time. Time to bury the cultural cringe, time to celebrate Australian writing, and time to discover the richness of Australian literature.

Annette Marfording’s interviews are among the most well-researched, thoughtful and intelligent, ever. She had insights into my achievements that I possibly didn't quite have myself. And her specific questions were always spot on, carefully thought out. - Debra Adelaide
Celebrating Australian Writing: Conversations with Australian Authors

​Annette Marfording’s book Celebrating Australian Writing: Conversations with Australian Authors features 21 in-depth conversations with Australian authors on their books, central themes in their body of work, writing methods, central tips for aspiring writers and much, much more. Authors interviewed include literary authors and poets (David Malouf, Cate Kennedy, Peter Goldsworthy), crime writers (Michael Robotham, Barry Maitland), commercial fiction authors (Di Morrissey, the late Bryce Courtenay), and narrative non-fiction authors (Robert Dessaix and Kate Howarth).

Readers encounter revelations ranging from Alex Miller on the pivotal role of the unconscious, Charlotte Wood on the ethics of ‘stealing’ stories, Robert Drewe on male confusion, Larissa Behrendt on the vexed issue of Anglo-Saxon authors writing on indigenous issues, Gregory Day about the music in language, and more.

Celebrating Australian Writing: Conversations with Australian Authors is based on the best of the interviews Annette conducted for her radio program.

​All readers - and I think students of writing in particular - enjoy and gain enormous insight from well-crafted, intuitive and intelligent interviews with writers, glimpses into their process and their writing lives, such as the ones Annette Marfording conducted for Celebrating Australian Writing: Conversations with Australian Authors.- Kristina Olsson

Read the sample chapter with Robert Drewe

​Annette will donate all the profits from the sale of her book to the Indigenous Literacy Foundation.

​Celebrating Australian Writing is available in the following (mostly) independent bookshops which are supporting the Indigenous Literacy Foundation by lowering their commission:

​Sydney: Abbey’s; Harry Hartog; Better Read Than Dead; Co-op Bookshop city, UTS and Sydney University; Gleebooks

Bellingen: Alternatives Bookshop, Coffs Harbour: Book Warehouse, Port Macquarie: Bookface

​Order the book online from the Coop bookstore


In this book, Celebrating Australian Writing: Conversations with Australian Authors (2015), author Annette Marfording has compiled a comprehensive guide based on interviews she conducted with many Australian writers … I would recommend this book for writers to dip in and out of at will, to glean valuable understanding of the writing practices and habits of some of our country’s most renowned writers. Cass Moriarty

Kathleen Steele in Byron Writers Festival Magazine Northerly March-April 2017:

​Marfording’s interviewing talent combined with her passion for Australian writing makes this a deeply rewarding book… These are important interviews. They provide a framework for their time, and a reference for future lovers of Australian literature to go back to and to learn from.- Candida Baker, Verandah Magazine 
​‘The authors are satisfyingly diverse, including some whose background and work reflects a migrant experience (Gregory Day), and others whose work connects with their Indigenous identity (Larissa Behrendt, Kate Howarth)… The interviews [offer] insights into the writing life – the close loyalties between writers and their editors … attitudes towards awards and prizes … the difficulties of writing short fiction… This collection creates [a] sense of vibrant complexity, and it is a true celebration of Australian writing. … Marfording’s multiple conversations construct exciting and substantial explorations of important aspects of Australian literature. - Jeannette Delamoir, Newtown Review of Books

​Comments from readers

Recently, as I was preparing for a memoir writing class I was to teach, I re-read some interviews from Annette Marfording's wonderful collection 'Celebrating Australian Writers'. I was struck again by the wealth of insights in this remarkable book where she interviews such amazing people as Robert Dessaix, Peter Goldsworthy and Charlotte Wood.I've always been an avid reader of interviews with writers and I'm not easy to impress, but Marfording did impress me a lot with her fierce intelligence and skilful immersion in the works of the writers she interviewed. The depth and particularity of her questions, the broad comparative perspective and her attention to style as much as to content are all admirable. A great resource for writers in my view. - Lee Kofman, author, blogger, creative writing teacher and mentor
I loved reading your interviews which I think had a depth and substance that I’ve not experienced before. I loved it when your interviewees said “I’ve never been asked that before” then proceeded to give you detailed responses … I’ve made a list of books that I haven’t read from your well-researched introductions to the writer. A good read for students and general writers. Thanks. - Heather Roche, Writers Victoria
When I began reading Annette Marfording's Celebrating Australian Writing I knew I held a book that would become a must-have for my students. Because Annette is deeply engaged with Australian writing, the authors she interviewed for this work responded to her questioning in a way that is rare and illuminative. Celebrating Australian Writing is an initiation into the mystery of creativity. - Carrolline Rhodes, author and creative writing teacher