Friday, Saturday, Sunday
July 23rd, 24th & 25th, 2021


It is with much regret and disappointment that BRW Festival organising committee advise that the literary event planned for  July, 2020 is to be postponed.

The good news (and Lord knows we can all do with some) is that Ignite Your Mind Burdekin Readers and Writers Festival will now be staged on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, July 23rd, 24th & 25th, 2021.

To date almost all of the authors who were to be part of Festival 2020 have indicated they will be available to join us in July, 2021.

Follow us on Facebook for further updates.

Thank you for your continued support and we very much look forward to staging our fourth literary festival in 2021.





The recent Burdekin Library / Burdekin Readers and Writers Association Virtual Author and Illustrator week saw a group of 6 join with biographer Jeff Apter in a Zoom session where he  chatted about what lead him to take up a career as a biographer as well as the subjects of his publications. As a great fan of music he found himself motivated to be ‘part of the scene’ and by the desire to write ‘something different…better… about musicians and their world.’ As a journalist he had written for  the Rolling Stone magazine for some 20 years before he responded to a challenge to produce his own book. What followed his first publication that featured Daniel Johns and Silverchair has been a succession of biographies (some of which were co-written) that he believes were about revealing the true people behind the stardom and the reputations.     

His publications cover an impressive list of musical talent including Kasey Chambers, Keith Urban, Johnny O’Keefe, Helen Reddy, Dave Grohl, Chili Peppers, Gwen Stefani, the Finn Brothers, Jeff Buckley and Shirl. Jeff has also written Michael Slater’s sporting biography and two biographies detailing the wartime experiences of  Australian soldiers.

In response to questions from participants Jeff likened co-writing biographies to being on a psychiatrist’s couch where the relationship between the subject and the writer is one of trust where ‘you wait for stuff to emerge.’ It was obvious to all of us listening to him that he enjoyed working with ‘people’ and saw the non-fiction genre of biography as ‘a puzzle that already exists’ and that its key focus is to always deal with the facts. He believes a biography should avoid sensationalism where everything that is written is substantiated. He also enjoys being able to write about his subjects while they are alive so as to focus on what they have achieved along with the misfortunes and dark times that they have experienced. Jeff’s ambition is to have one of his works made into a TV show which would allow him to learn the art of screen writing. His secret hope is that his publication on the Gibbs Brothers may be the one that becomes the TV series.”


Nicole Alexander

‘Ignite Your Mind 2015 was a fabulous festival to be a part of. This was a ‘readers festival’ in the truest sense, with a fascinating weekend program that included a mix of well-known authors as well as great entertainment. The intimacy of the event allowed a level of...

John Marsden

Having been a visiting writer at the Ignite Your Mind Festival, I have to say I was quite astonished by the fervour of the audiences to which I spoke. The audiences ranged from primary school children through secondary school students to adults, and represented...

Professor Roly Sussex

Reflecting on your outstanding Festival, it strikes me that you have got several things very much right. First, the size. I am sure there is a critical mass below which festivals like this won’t work. But I suspect there is also an upper limit, which has been exceeded...

East Ayr State School

Our Minds are Ignited! As part of the Burdekin Readers’ and Writers’ Ignite Your Mind Festival East Ayr State School was proud to offer students a chance to engage with two successful published speakers and writers, Michael Gerard Bauer and Jacqueline Harvey. The...

Nick Earls

"From the start, the team behind the Ignite Your Mind Burdekin Readers and Writers Festival have got a great deal right. At the first festival, attending writers were unanimous in feeling that this was a festival that was well organised and running smoothly, with none...

Caroline Overington

I wasn't sure what to expect from the Burdekin Writers Festival, and I came away thrilled by the experience. It really is one of the nation's most enjoyable festivals. The events are well organised, the topics interesting, and the crowds interested. Writers are made...

Past Festivals

BRW Is incredibly proud of the amazing line-up of Authors and Journalists who have been involved in the event since it’s inaugural year in 2015.

Click on the images below to see details of our past festivals.

Burdekin Writing Group

BRW Scratchy Scribblers Writing Group meets on the 3rd Tuesday of the month.

For those interested in joining please click through to our contact form.

Members Musings

Kid Lit & Adult Lit Festival – Unique Combination

Kid Lit & Adult Lit Festival – Unique Combination

Kid Lit and Adult Lit Festival - Unique Combination Festival co-ordinator Mickey McKellar talked, in an interview, about how the Kid Lit and Adult Lit program worked well. How a visionary aligned two venues — the Burdekin Theatre and Library, which are...



by Leanne Green “Flairy Floss and Flerris Wheels are my favourite things at the show” Billy told his class when it was his turn to answer the teacher’s question about the show. “OK” said the teacher, “but say it again slowly and think about the words, as saying it too...

Never Again by Mickey McKellar

Never Again by Mickey McKellar

Never Again – What a topic! What to write about? What is it about my life that I have no real regrets and I am struggling to recall something that I would never repeat? Over the past month I have wracked my brain trying to recall something to put on paper.  Nothing...

A poem for the poets

A poem for the poets

We gathered in the Library, Ten people with an aim, And first we introduced ourselves, Explained why there we came; Nine ladies and a gentleman, All like to use a pen, A pencil or computer to Spin words together, then Share what we’ve written with a hope It might go...

Want to support the Burdekin Readers & Writers Assoc.?


We are taking donations and sponsorships to help us bring the best quality workshops to our region. If you are interested in supporting us, or sponsoring our major festival please be in touch.

Past Events

Between our major festivals we host regular meet-ups, writers workshops, book launches, author talks and more. Here is where you will find all the events we have held in the last few years.

An Evening with Dame Quentin Bryce

An Evening with Dame Quentin Bryce

As Australia’s first female Governor-General, Quentin Bryce handwrote fifty or so letters each week. They were to people she had met and connected with as her role took her from palaces to outback schools, from war zones to memorials, from intimate audiences to lavish...

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