What makes a good reader? How does one develop and sustain a critical instinct? Three engaging critics and writers share some of the books that inspired and compelled them — with James Wood from The New Yorker, Geordie Williamson of The Australian, and author Jane Gleeson-White, who blogs her bookish thoughts at bookishgirl.com. Chair: writer and reviewer Tegan Bennett Daylight.
Geordie Williamson (Australian)
Geordie Williamson is chief literary critic of The Australian, a position he has held since 2008, though his essays and reviews have been appearing in newspapers and magazines here and in the UK for over a decade. In 2011, he won the Pascall Prize for criticism, Australia’s only major national prize awarded for critical writing. He is the author of The Burning Library: Our Great Novelists Lost and Found and lives in the Blue Mountains with his family. geordiewilliamson.com
James Wood is a staff writer atThe New Yorker and a visiting lecturer at Harvard. In addition to How Fiction Works, he is the author of two essay collections, The Broken Estate and The Irresponsible Self, and a novel, The Book Against God.
Jane Gleeson-White is the author of Double Entry: how the merchants of Venice shaped the modern world - and how their invention could make or break the planet which won the 2012 Nib Literary Award recognising excellence in literary research. Her previous works are Australian Classics and Classics. bookishgirl.com.au
Tegan Bennett Daylight is a fiction writer, critic and lecturer in writing. She is the author of three novels: Bombora, What Falls Away and Safety, as well as several books for children and teenagers, and the essays Solving Problems in Fiction and How Influence Works. She is at work on a collection of short stories, which have been published in many journals. She works as a lecturer in creative writing in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Technology.