A Message from Jemma Birrell, Artistic Director 

Early one morning, I happened upon an article by Ceridwen Dovey in The New Yorker, ‘Can Reading Make You Happier?’ Ceridwen’s piece explored the ancient concept of bibliotherapy, and spoke about literature’s meditative and restorative effects in terms of mental health, improved relationships and the ability to empathise with others. I liked where this was going. Books are indeed places we can lose ourselves and at the same time find the answers to whatever we might be searching for, even if we don’t quite know what that is.

A good festival, like a good book, should bring real-life benefits – joy, solace and a new understanding of the world.

Sydney Writers’ Festival is a week-long extravaganza of ideas and literature. In 2016 we have an exhilarating array of authors bringing their wisdom, knowledge and imaginative whimsy to Sydney.

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Tickets on sale now

We are thrilled to share the 2016 Sydney Writers' Festival program with you.

The full program of events and writers is available to view on this website - please use the top navigation to search the program. Tickets for our ticketed events can be purchased through the 'Book Now' link on each event page.

Events which have sold out and any changes to the program since the printed edition are listed on the Event Updates page. 

You can view a digital copy of the program online, download a copy, or pick one up from your local bookstore or one of our Festival venues.

We hope you enjoy perusing the program, planning your perfect Festival week, and we look forward to seeing you from Monday 16 to Sunday 22 May.

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Subscribe on iTunes or Soundcloud to hear podcasts from some of our previous events. We have dozens of podcasts from some of the world's best and most influential writers and thinkers. Enjoy!

Select events from the 2016 program will be released on our channels from June onwards.



Sponsors and Partners Sydney Writers' Festival 2016