The Mudgee Readers' Festival is celebrating ten years since its inception back in 2009 with an impressive and diverse lineup of guests and event to make a 'dynamic, fun and thoughtful program to delight readers of all ages'.
The Festival which takes place during August combines a love of stories with the region's food and wine and offers a great mix of free and ticketed events that truly suit everyone.
This year's festival lineup features a bevvy of impressive guests and events like 'Growing Up Muslim in Australia' with Amal Awad at the Mudgee Town Hall, 'Coffee and breakfast' with famed writer Benjamin Law and Maeve Marsden with a special Mudgee Readers' Festival edition of her influential podcast, Queerstories.
Listen to a recent episode of Queerstories below
General Manager of the Readers' Festival, Portia Lindsay says she's thrilled to have been able to bring together such a strong and diverse lineup to Mudgee this year.
"I think it's really important for cultural events in our region and everywhere really, to have a representative line up that's reflective of our entire community and to introduce people to fresh voices and ideas," Ms Lindsay said.
"It allows people to see not just themselves but other viewpoints through what they're taking in and that's 'where we come from when programming the festival,"
"We want to engage our audience but also challenge and provoke conversation, inspire thought and empathy and just have some fun along the way, as well engaging people with reading and literature."
Chris Hammer will share the story behind Scrublands, the book that the Mudgee community has been reading care of the One Book One Community initiative; the Mudgee Zine Makers will reveal a new story of Wiradjuri culture with special guest Kiara Harris and Uncle Dick Carney and Aunty Ruth Carney will launch their book A Little Piece of Heaven.
The Readers' Festival isn't just about adult readers either, now in its second year, the Mudgee Young Readers' Festival will commence with Trivia: From Page to Screen on Friday, August 9 and continue through the main Festival weekend with bookmaking workshops, a silent reading party with Will Kostakis, and Sunday Story-time with Ursula Dubosarsky, author of The Terrible Plop.
Ms Lindsay said the Young Readers' Festival continued to grow and offer tailored experiences to young readers and fans of literature.
"The Mudgee Readers' Festival has always done events and school sessions for young readers but we really wanted to kind of branch that out as something for the young people in our community that makes it theirs and an independent part of the program," Ms Lindsay said.
The Mudgee Guardian will have interviews with the guests, speakers and writers ahead of the festival, so keep en eye on the Mudgee Guardian website, especially the Life and Style section.