From the impacts on the arts and media to the importance of our inner lives, 2020 affected each Australian uniquely and profoundly. In Fire Flood Plague, an all-star line-up of Australian thinkers reflect on what the year meant to them, creating a vital cultural record of these extraordinary times. Join journalist and filmmaker Santilla Chingaipe as she asks Christos Tsiolkas (Damascus), James Bradley (Ghost Species), Omar Sakr (The Lost Arabs) and Alison Croggon (Monsters) to reflect on our recovery from the year that was, the resilience and humanity we demonstrated, and the important lessons we must carry into the future.

James Bradley (Australian)

James Bradley

James Bradley is a writer and critic. His books include the novels Wrack, The Deep Field, The Resurrectionist and Clade; a book of poetry, Paper Nautilus; and the anthology, The Penguin Book of the Ocean. In 2012, he won the Pascall Prize for Australia’s Critic of the Year. His most recent novel is Ghost Species.

Omar Sakr (Australian)

Omar Sakr

Omar Sakr is the author of two books, including The Lost Arabs (UQP, 2019), which won the 2020 Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Poetry. His essays have been anthologised in Fire Flood Plague (Penguin Random House, 2020), Meet Me at the Intersection (Fremantle Press, 2018) and Going Postal: More Than Yes or No (Brow Books, 2018). His short fiction has appeared in Kindred: 12 Queer LoveOzYA Stories (Walker Books, 2019) as well as After Australia (Affirm Press, 2020).

Alison Croggon (Australian)

Alison Croggon

Alison Croggon is a writer who lives in Melbourne, Australia. Her work includes poetry, theatre writing, criticism and novels for young people and adults. Her recent books include The Threads of Magic (Walker Books, 2020) and New and Selected Poems 1991–2017 (Newport Street Books). Alison is the Arts Editor for The Saturday Paper and Co-Editor of Witness Performance, a forum for independent critique and debate about the Australian performing arts.

Christos Tsiolkas (Australian)

Christos Tsiolkas

Christos Tsiolkas is the author of six novels, including Dead Europe, Loaded and Barracuda. His novel The Slap won Overall Best Book in the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize 2009, was shortlisted for the 2009 Miles Franklin Literary Award, longlisted for the 2010 Man Booker Prize, won the Australian Literary Society Gold Medal, and was announced as the 2009 Australian Booksellers Association and Australian Book Industry Awards Books of the Year. Many of his books have been adapted for film, TV and for the stage. Christos is also a playwright, essayist and film critic for The Saturday Paper. His latest novel is Damascus.

Santilla Chingaipe (Australian)

Santilla Chingaipe

Santilla Chingaipe is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. A regular contributor for The Saturday Paper, her first book of non-fiction is due later this year. Santilla is a member of the Federal Government’s Advisory Group on Australia-Africa Relations and lives in Melbourne.