The Mountain Goats’ front man John Darnielle is considered one of the greatest living songwriters and ‘America's best non-hip-hop lyricist’ (The New Yorker).

John’s debut novel Wolf in White Van has catapulted him into the literary world and he joins Sydney Writers’ Festival to speak about his new book and work as a whole. Longlisted for the National Book Award, Wolf in White Van is both audacious and gripping, a marvel of storytelling brio and genuine literary delicacy. It is the story of Sean Phillips, isolated by a disfiguring injury since the age of seventeen, crafting imaginary worlds for strangers to play in. From his small apartment in southern California, he orchestrates fantastic adventures where possibilities, both dark and bright, open the boundaries between the real and the imagined. Sean guides players from around the world through his intricately imagined terrain, which they navigate and explore, seeking sanctuary in a ravaged, savage future America.

‘This is simply a magnificent novel, weird and dark and wonderful, adventurous and spellbinding in the way of any great piece of literary art’ – NPR (National Public Radio)

John Darnielle is a writer, composer, guitarist, and vocalist for the band the Mountain Goats; he is widely considered one of the best lyricists of his generation.

When       Wednesday 25 February, 7.30pm 
Where     Carriageworks
Price        Adult $35 + bf / Concession $28 + bf / Groups $28 + bf



Sydney Writers' Festival is thrilled to present Julia Donaldson and her guitar-wielding husband Malcolm for an amazing hour of storytelling and sing-along. Bring your best singing voices and prepare to join in the fun as we go on an adventure to the deep, dark woods, find out exactly what the Ladybird heard and enjoy fantastic action-packed performances of your favourite Julia Donaldson picture books. This very special event is not to be missed, it’s sure to be a Squash and a Squeeze so book your tickets early to make sure you have Room on the Broom!

About Julia Donaldson

Julia Donaldson is the outrageously talented, prize-winning author of the world's best-loved children's books, and was the 2011-2013 UK Children's Laureate. Her picture books include the modern classic The Gruffalo, which has sold over 5 million copies worldwide. Julia also writes fiction, including the Princess Mirror-Belle series illustrated by Lydia Monks, as well as poems, plays and songs – and her brilliant live shows are always in demand. Julia and her husband Malcolm divide their time between West Sussex and Edinburgh.

When       Saturday 21 February, 2pm
Where      Sydney Theatre, Walsh Bay
Price        Adult $30, Children $19, Family (2 adults, 2 children) $78
                 Family tickets available via phone and counter.
                 Call STC Box Office on (02) 9250 1999 to book.



Join Neil Gaiman and FourPlay String Quartet for an evening, in two halves, of storytelling, music and song. Throughout this eclectic performance, Neil will read a variety of work and perform new collaborative pieces with the musicians of FourPlay. 

Neil Gaiman is a celebrated and occasionally even beloved writer.

He's the New York Times bestselling author of many books for children and adults, including UK National Book Award's Book of the Year The Ocean At The End Of The Lane, and The Graveyard Book (the only novel to win both the Newbery and Carnegie Medals). His DC Comic series Sandman was described by the Los Angeles Times as the greatest epic in the history of comic books. He reads his own audiobooks, loves doing it, and has won many awards for it. His stories have been adapted for major films, television, and radio. He has written two episodes of the BBC's Doctor Who, and played himself on The Simpsons.

In 2008, Gaiman joined Twitter as @neilhimself and now has over 2 million followers and counting. 

Neil Gaiman has released five books since his last appearance in Australia in 2013; Fortunately The MilkThe Truth Is A Cave In The Black MountainsThe Ocean At The End Of The LaneHansel & Gretel and The Sleeper and the Spindle. The comic series, The Sandman: Overture is midway through release now.
When       Saturday 31 January, 7.30pm
Where      City Recital Hall, Angel Place
Price        $50 + bf


Presented by Sydney Writers' Festival and Top Shelf Productions


The Festival Lives On!

For anyone experiencing Festival withdrawal we have some good news. The Festival will live on in podcasts, videos and writing on our SWF Blog. You can also relive precious moments with Radio National, ABC Arts and ABC 702. We'll be posting lots of events over the next few weeks. Keep in touch! 

Of course, nothing beats live stories. Put 18-24 May 2015 in the diary! 



Funders and partners of Sydney Writers' Festival 2014