Secondary School Days brings literature to life, offering students (aged 13+) a chance to meet the people behind the stories they love.
This year’s line-up welcomes some of the finest writers for young adults, including 24-year-old novelist and journalist Will Kostakis, TV and YA fiction author Fiona Wood, author (and Olympian) Lisa Forrest and Australia's leading spoken word performer for young people, David Stavanger, aka Ghostboy. MC: Judith Ridge.
Supported by the University of Western Sydney.
Lisa Forrest (Australian)
Lisa Forrest was once most famous for being an Olympic swimmer, and captain of the Olympic swim team at just 16 years of age. These days, she’s known to thousands of young adults as the author of novels including Making the Most of It and djmAx. Her latest novel, Inheritance, blends the intrigue and power of the circus and its performers with the mysterious powers of the ancient world. Lisa is also a successful broadcaster, TV presenter and public speaker and actor. Her non-fiction book Boycott recounts her experiences during the infamous 1980 Moscow Olympics.
David Stavanger - aka Ghostboy - is one of Australia’s leading spoken word artists for young people. Known of his innovative and enigmatic performances, Ghostboy’s shows are a live hybrid of spoken word theatre, poetry, cabaret and dark comedy. Ghostboy has been featured at many festivals both nationally and on the international stage, including the premier youth literary festivals Voices on the Coast and the Somerset Writers’ Festival.
Judith Ridge is an internationally recognised specialist in children’s and youth literature. She has been an English teacher, editor, writer, critic and teacher of children’s literature and creative writing. She is currently the project officer for WestWords – the Western Sydney Young People’s Literature Development Project. Judith is on the Executive Board of the ASA, is a Churchill Fellow and has a master’s in children’s literature. misrule.com.au/wordpress
Will Kostakis is a 24-year-old author from Sydney, Australia. He won The Sydney Morning Herald Young Writer of the Year prize in 2005, and his first novel, Loathing Lola, was published when he was only 19. Will’s second novel, The First Third, is an intimate portrait of a broken Greek-Australian family and the boy given the task of repairing it. When he is not writing novels or speaking to teenagers in schools, Will works as a freelance journalist. willkostakis.com
Fiona Wood’s first novel Six Impossible Things was shortlisted for the 2011 CBCA Book of the Year for Older Readers. In 2014 her second novel Wildlife was longlisted for the Gold Inky Award. Her third novel Cloudwish will be published in 2015. Before writing YA fiction, Fiona worked as a screenwriter for more than ten years, working on programs including The Secret Life of US, Neighbours, Home and Away, and children’s dramas The Sleepover Club and Silver Sun. fionawood.com