2019 Writers Unleashed Festival at Tradies Gymea

The Writers Unleashed festival will this year celebrate a decade of creative collaborations.

The 2019 festival will be on Saturday, August 17 at Tradies Gymea and is hosted by the Fellowship of Australian Writers Sutherland Branch.

As in previous years there will be a variety of author talks running throughout the day in three rooms.

Authors specialising in writing for adults, writing for young adults (YA) and writing for children will share their insights on writing and being published.

The array of topics for discussion will interest both writers and readers alike.

Children's authors this year include: Oliver Phommavanh, Susanne Gervey, Tohby Riddle, Lisa Shanahan and Jodie Wells-Slowgrove.

The delightful YA, adult authors and poets are: Kate Forsyth, Meg Keneally, Bianca Nogrady, Pamela Hart, Philip Porter, Helena Fox and Pat Grant.

Forsyth, 52, is best known for her historical novel Bitter Greens, which interweaves a retelling of the Rapunzel fairy tale with the true life story of the woman who first told the tale, the 17th century French writer Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force.

She is also the author of several children's books, including The Gypsy Crown, The Puzzle Ring, The Starthorn Tree, The Wildkin's Curse, The Starkin Crown and Dragon Gold.

She writes in her small study, which overlooks a romantic, English-style garden, there's an entire bookcase filled with copies of her published works, including foreign translations, and a shelf lined with "years of consecutive diaries". She still writes in a journal every day.

Forsyth says she plans her novels in big notebooks, a fresh one for each, which she carries with her everywhere until the book is complete. They are often brimful with timelines, pictures, maps, lists of reference books, character sketches.

"Since the moment I could hold a pencil I have spent nearly all day every day writing,'' Forsyth said.

"When I first began dreaming of being a writer, I imagined myself writing the sort of books I so loved to read. Books that were filled with wonder and adventure, mystery and magic.

"As a child, I always thought I would write for other children. As I grew into an adult, I wanted to write for who I became. So it seems very natural to me to write for all age groups."

Forsyth has written more than 40 books. In addition to her life of fiction, she has completed a doctorate about fairytales.

Forensic, academic thinking is entirely compatible with her creative pursuits, she says.

"One of the biggest mistakes people make is to think that what you need to write a novel is imagination, creativity and a facility with words,'' she told the Sun-Herald.

''Yes, you need all those things, but a novel is a highly complex organism that needs to be dealt with in quite a logical manner."

Other highlights of the Writers Unleashed festival will be director/scriptwriter Heath Davis sharing his experience on filmmaking and editor Alexandra Nahlous giving her address 'Think like an editor'.

The popular editor's panel will be Anna Valdinger and Tom Bailey-Smith our Adult Editors and Zoe Walton, Suzanne O'Sullivan and Clare Hallifax our children's editors.

Tickets went on sale May 31.

For more information on the cost of tickets and how to book sessions go to shirewritersfestival.weebly.com