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New Writers Join Perth Festival Writers Weekend 2024

MEDIA RELEASE: Monday, 29 January 2024

Talented wordsmiths Amal Awad, Sarah Ayoub, Mabel Gibson, and Raihanaty A Jalil will join the 2024 Perth Festival Writers Weekend lineup, enriching the already exciting and varied program from 23-25 February at the State Library of WA.

Amal Awad is a Sydney-based writer, director and performer. As a journalist, she has contributed to such publications as The Guardian, ELLE and Frankie, and has produced and presented for ABC Radio National. Amal is the author of eight books, including her latest novel Bitter & Sweet.

Amal joins Leading Ladies with Natasha Lester, Rachael Johns, and Sasha Wasley; and State of the Arts with Niki Savva, Karen Herbert, and Seth Malacari.

Sarah Ayoub is a freelance journalist, bestselling author and academic based in Sydney, Australia. Her bylines have appeared in The Guardian, The Australian, Marie-Claire, ELLE, and more. Sarah is the author of three teen novels, including the Inky-longlisted The Yearbook Committee, and three children’s picture books, including The Love that Grew and How to be a Friend.

Sarah joins When it All Falls Down with Emma Young, Caitlin Maling, and Shankari Chandran; Fellow Writers with Chris Womersley, Patrick Mullins, and Mabel Gibson; and High Concept with Amanda Bridgeman, Holly Craig, and Carrie Cox.

Mabel Gibson is a Yamatji writer. She spent her childhood in Albany and moved to Geraldton as a teenager, before studying at the University of Western Australia. Her flash and micro pieces have been published in Once: A selection of short short storiesTwice Not Shy: One hundred short short stories and Three Can Keep a Secret by Night Parrot Press, and maar bidi: next generation black writing by Magabala Books.

Mabel joins Fellow Writers with Chris Womersley, Patrick Mullins, and Sarah Ayoub.

Raihanaty A Jalil is a self-described “jack of all trades, master of one” and recipient of the 2019 Centre for Stories Inclusion Matters Hot Desk Fellowship. Born in Malaysia to Indonesian parents, Rainhanaty has a bachelor’s degree in education and science. She has platformed her poetry and fiction at Perth Festival Writers Week, the Wheeler Centre and elsewhere.

Raihanaty joins City Poets with Lisa Collyer, Scott-Patrick Mitchell, and Megan Ugle at the City of Perth Library.

Writing WA and Perth Festival have joined together for the first time to present Writers Weekend at the State Library of WA, bringing together a remarkable line-up of local, national and international talent for a literary feast across two binge-worthy days.

‘We are delighted to have had the opportunity to enhance our existing program with these wonderful authors – Amal Awad, Sarah Ayoub, Mabel Gibson, and Raihanaty A Jalil – accepting our invitation to join Perth Festival Writers Weekend 2024,’ Writing WA CEO Will Yeoman said.

‘Circumstances have changed considerably since we put our program together and we are grateful for the community feedback that has helped us diversify our representation and enhance our offering to audiences.’

‘We look forward with great excitement to seeing readers and writers coming together for a joyful celebration of our common humanity through the sharing of stories, poems, pictures and music.’

Each day of the weekend features a series of inspiring workshops, panel sessions, performances and screenings across every form and genre including popular fiction, children’s literature, First Nations storytelling essay writing, poetry, young adult fantasy, graphic novels, journalism and documentaries.

There also will be the safe, staffed Story Time space for children to explore, author signings at the Boffins’ pop-up bookstore and a Literary Lounge Bar to grab a bite or drink between sessions.

Tickets are available to all sessions now at perthfestival.com.au.

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