Cairns Tropical Writers Festival History

Tropical Writers Inc launched the inaugural Cairns Tropical Writers Festival in 2008 to meet the needs of the regional writing community of Far North Queensland. In 2012, the festival was re-named the Cairns Tropical Writers Festival to give a feeling of ownership to the regional community and to stimulate direct involvement from members of the Tropical Writers Inc and regional writers. This initiative has progressed the opportunities for the community to meet, connect with and be motivated by published Australian authors and the wider writing industry. The profile of the festival has grown considerably as a direct result of building a following in the larger community and has gained recognition from organisations such as the Queensland Writers Centre and the Brisbane Writers Festival.

Originally, the festival was timed with being a part of the broader Cairns Festival in 2008 and 2010. However, once it was reviewed and the benefits it offered considered, Tropical Writers Inc determined that it was preferable not to compete with the larger event and so it looked at other dates. In each pre-planning phase, the festival’s committee looks at what other events have emerged in the region, what the national calendar of writers’ festivals is and if there is any festival to partner with to potentially share audience and presenters.

After successful 2014, 2016 and 2018 festivals (under the Tropical Writers Inc.’s helm), and after three challenging Covid-19 related postponements, the now independent 2023 festival delivered an expansive program and a large overall attendance, to much delight of the local community and visitors alike.

Given the growth and its ambition going forward, and in mutual agreement with Tropical Writers Inc., in 2019 the festival was established as a new incorporated association, the Cairns Writers Festival Inc., with a set of objectives that set out the vision for growth, diversity and inclusion, partnership, audience development, and associated governance matters. The festival’s organisers look forward to future festivals that serve the regional community and the wide audience of writers, readers and thinkers, encouraging them to pursue and fulfill their goals and ambitions.

To see more about the upcoming festivals, to check what other fringe events are on, and to remain up-to-date, visit the festival’s website: Cairns Tropical Writers Festival

© Tropical Writers Inc 2024

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