My Melbourne Writers’ Festival session

I had a lovely time during my Melbourne Writers’ Festival session yesterday. I chatted to chair Andrew Finnegan about blogging and what makes a blog good and/or bad.

I showed off the diverse subject nature of blogs with my lappy (projecting onto the big screen) with a knitting blog and a Monster Truck blog as well as blogs that are more serious in nature such as Random Acts of Reality – an anonymous blog written by an active paramedic in London. And of course I showed a completely irrelevant blog/website – Bad Paintings of Barack Obama.

The audience was an inquisitive one with lots of questions such as ‘how do you find blogs about your favourite topics?’ To which the answer was Technorati – the search engines for blogs. That question was easier to answer than ‘What were you like as a high school kid?’ which descended into me blabbering about unpopularity and not being good at Basketball. Ergh.


And just to prove I was there, here’s me at the session with the very cool audience that came to see me at the Festival Club – which looked more like a Jazz Club than a literary venue but was a nice and homely space to play in for 45 or so minutes.

11 thoughts on “My Melbourne Writers’ Festival session”

  1. I am Anne Mirtschin, a teacher at Hawkesdale P12 College, a rural remote school in country Western Victoria. I am passionate about blogging and started with my students 2 years ago. Since then we have been on an amazing journey.
    Some of our students and two staff members went to Melbourne on Tuesday for the writers’ festival and really enjoyed the day. However, yours was the last session that they attended and in fact, the one they most enjoyed. Despite our library having copies of your book, our English teacher is now buying a class set to use with the year 7s.
    However I am writing to you to ask whether you would consider doing a skpye linkup with our school and talk to our students via videoconferencing. There are quite a number of US authors who do this now, and I was looking through their list to see who we might get, but would much rather support our own Austrlian authors.
    Would you be interested in doing this? Please let me know as I love to connect our students with others and above all, love using those online tools for improving literacies.

  2. heyy! i am Hannah from Hawkesdale College, and i was part of your audience at the Melbourne writers festival. This day was really inspiring in a lot of ways. I have blogs, wiki’s, myspace, facebook, bebo,skype, twitter and a lot of other things. As a year 11 VCE class we work within these on the net, and therefore learn a lot from them. We also participate in flat classroom projects, where we work woth other stduents our age on all different projects which we then add to wiki spaces. we can then add to and edit all things on them!
    there have been competitions throughout these projects , in which i have actually been very successfull. Becomming a second place winner in my group of people throughout the world!
    i have not read your book, but i thinik it would be a great read, and i will have to get around to it between all my VCE studies.
    I would like to say thenkyou on behalf of the sudents from Hawkesdale P-12 College who participated in the melbourne writers festival, it was great!

  3. Hey Andrew im Bailey from Hawkesdale P/12 College and i attended your session at the Melbourne Writers Festival. Ive been blogging for 2 years now and i really enjoyed listening two you about your blogging.

  4. Hi i am grace
    I am from Hawkesdale college!!
    I was at the writers festival i listend to you talk about your book and blog!!
    I really liked the idea of the take the skull to work day i found it really funny!!
    In the picture my school is sitting in the back behind the wood!!
    I also have a blog it is
    so yeh you can have a look at that if you like!!
    Thanks for talking to us!!

  5. Thanks guys! Lovely of your to leave comments. And I’m glad you enjoyed the session. Sounds like your school is doing some pretty cool stuff. I especially like the sound of sharing wiki spaces with other students. Nice!

    Also, I put the blog addresses you left me on my blogroll. Which means we are officially blog-friends now.

  6. Hey Andrew,
    My name is emily. I attended the Writers Festival and was at your session. Your session was my favourite and my friends agreed too. Im also from Hawkesdale College. I am actually in the photo so that is pretty cool.
    Thanks for a great session. I really enjoyed it.

    Emily (Flurogreen – that’s my blogging name)

  7. I thought it would be kool to tell you that I have done lots with blogs. I have participated in ‘flatclassroom’ projects that help us learn more about blogs, wikis and how to use them better. I have also travelled overseas to Qatar near the Arab Emrites for an International Conference where we came up with projects. Most were about Poverty. We used blogs, wikis, the olden day powerpoint and lots of computer programs to present our projects to some judges and the winning project would be followed on. it was such a great experience that I got because I blogged with great enthusiam!! You should check my blog out at

    Thanks again (sorry about all the comments but I kept forgetting to add everything!)

  8. Thanks Flurogreen! Man, blogging names are so much better than real names.

    flatclassroom does sound cool. I love that you called powerpoint ‘olden day powerpoint’. Too funny. I shall now check out your blog. Are you going to part of the Skype hookup next week? I’ve never done such a hookup with a school before. Muchos lookforwardtos!


  9. Heyy! I’m Leecie, another from the small country school of HAWKESDALE!! 🙂
    I attended your small comforting ‘session’ at the writers festival and I LOVED IT!
    As the day went on, the sessions got better. The first one I nearly fell asleep in, the third one I was a little more awake but your’s I was wide awake! (kinda had to be, we were only a few rows away from you! haha)
    Neat little photo you have here 😉 haha I can see me and my friends sitting riggghhtt up the back row (because we wanted to sleep… haha nahh it was good!)
    anyway, you can check out my blog if you want.. it’s nothing special though! haha

    catch 🙂

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