Monday, 10 July 2017

Success is Possible: Gail Jones, ‘The Art of Writing’. By Erica Little

Mildura Writers Festival guest author: Gail Jones

Though there will be a variety of authors attending this year’s Writers Festival in Mildura, all of whom will bring something new and fascinating to our arts education, I have felt most drawn in and fascinated by the Australian writer Gail Jones. Her collections of work have piqued my curiosity as to what insights she will provide in the session, ‘The Art of Writing’, where she will be appearing alongside Helen Garner with Michael Meehan.

When I began researching the festival program and the people who would be speaking, Gail Jones was someone who stood out for me—I’m not sure why. It was after looking into her articles, and dipping into her novel A Guide to Berlin (2015), that I began to grow interested in her as an author.
At first I thought the novel was simply just what it says in its title—a tour guide for Berlin; but it is actually a novel that revolves around international travellers from all around the world, who meet in Berlin and share their individual stories, with an unexpected act of violence changing everyone’s lives. As I adore reading mystery novels, as well as adventurous ones, the premise of this novel intrigued me and drove me to continue my research, starting with her Penguin Books biography. 
Cover image: A Guide to Berlin

Although I have only just purchased my copy of A Guide to Berlin, I look forward to hearing Jones speak at the festival, and hope I get the chance to ask her how she managed to create the premise of such a thrilling novel. I’d like to raise questions about what kind of research and thought processes go into creating this type of story.  

This prospect is appealing for me personally, as I feel that Gail Jones will be someone I can look up to and know that success is possible for Australian female writers. 

I wish to finish A Guide to Berlin by the end of the festival and post a review of the novel online, hopefully being able to include some comments that will come out of Gail Jones session as well. 

Click here for more information on Gail Jones’ session at the Mildura Writers Festival

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