You may or may not be aware that the annual Emerging Writers Festival is on again in Melbourne right now. It’s a festival that’s exciting and close to our hearts here in chez Chewton, not only because it’s a festival aimed specifically at inspiring and assisting writers, but also because Anna was one of the architects of the inaugural EWF program all those years ago and it’s always gratifying to see something you helped to set up continue to fulfil its raison d’être while getting bigger and better and more amazing every year.
Anyway, it’s on, and I’m in it. In a virtual sense, mainly.
I’ve been asked to be a moderator for EWFdigital’s TwitterFest, which is a week of on-twitter live discussions about a series of virtual panels on a range of topics about the future of publishing and writing in a digital environment.
Basically that means I’ll be on The Tweetster on Monday 28th May between 2pm and 3pm encouraging those present to join in on la topique du jour, which is, conversationally enough, “What Does Digital Writing Mean to You?”
If you’re on The Tweeter and want a piece of this sure-to-be-chaotic-but-invigorating conversation (think QandA but without the sanctimoniousness), your best bet is to check out EWFdigital, which will be hosting said virtual panels in the form of to-camera videos of various experts and pundits talking about the topic at hand as a way to kick off the twitter convo.
The “What Does Digital Writing Mean to You?” panel will feature the talents of children’s author and McCartney-collaborator Philip Ardagh, digital poet and MIT maven Amaranth Borsuk, and blogger/social researcher/inappropriate woman Rachel Hills. That’s a pretty terrifying amount of genius right there.
Then, alls you gotta do is get on The Tweeter and stay tuned to the #ewf12 hashtag and see what people are
saying typing. And when you wanna leap in with a comment, riposte or musing, you just make sure you’re using that #ewf12 hashtag too.
I’ll be there to help guide the chat along, should there be any awkward pauses while people are thinking, editing their comments down to 133 characters (gotta factor in the hashtag [and a grammatically appropriate space, of course…]), LOL-ing or fine-tuning their Instagram filters.
I’m also a virtual panelist on the EWFdigital site, offering an aperitif for the Wednesday 30th discussion, to wit: “What is the Future of Digital Publishing?”, alongside GeekDad Ken Denmead and Ancient Philosophy professor and co-founder of Libros del Zorzal Publishing Octavio Kulesz (again: eeeeee! so clever!). The following discussion, which will happen between 2pm and 3pm that day (as will all of the week’s TwitterFest events) will be hosted by the redoubtable Zoe Dattner. Say hi to Zoe for me.
So yeah. Emerging Writers Festival. A shit-tonne of excellence. If you’re in Melbourne between now and June 3, go see something. If you’re not, like me, you can still get a piece of it. So I’ll see you on the Tweet Machine, yeah?
EDIT: Thanks to everyone who got in on the “What is Digital Writing” conversation. There were a lot of interesting ideas put forward and a few links to some good articles and new digital writing out there, as well as some good conversation about how direct access to an audience (or lack of audience) can affect your writing. A transcript of our chat is up on the EWFDigital website for those who missed out on the live experience, as will all TwitterFest conversations by festival’s end..