Back in July NSW Writers’ Centre was delighted to have 14-year-old high school student Grace Othman attend the Speculative Fiction Festival. We asked Grace to write about her experience of the day.
NSW Writers’ Centre Speculative Fiction Festival was held on the 22nd of July. This day had many talks and panels relating to the topics and genres of fairytales/fantasy, science fiction, dystopian, superheroes and legends.
The festival was a very compelling time to attend to meet many authors and to get to know them and their work. The panelists spoke on the many aspects of speculative fiction, starting from planning and going all the way to getting published. Authors spoke about their thoughts on speculative fiction such as urban fantasy and the realisticness of each. Most authors used real life experiences to enrich their fantasy writing.
Many of the authors have written stories that are very dark. They told us that their drafts were way more frightening than their final copies. They start off writing something so dark it scares themselves. They explained that writing books for specific ages gives it limitations, but told us to write stories on what we want and there will still be readers.
At the festival I had the possibility to buy books by the authors that attended the festival. I had the chance to get them signed by such talented and creative authors. This experience is so inspirational to have as it encourages you to be successful like them in the future. It becomes so intriguing when you get to personally talk to authors and get the chance to know them and how they live and what they intended to do at my age. Most authors started writing at a young age and didn’t get published till at least after finishing school. Although some authors didn’t know that they wanted to write until their later years. I got to know that an author went to university and was studying something totally different to literature.
Overall the day was an extraordinary day and would definitely love to have such an experience again. This wonderful day was very educational while being extremely fun. Any person who loves literature should truly come to such an amazing event. I would personally recommend this festival to anyone.
Grace Othman is a 14 year old high school student who is currently in year 8. From a young age she has taken a special liking in reading and literature.