PAST EVENTS

Recordings of previous Off The Shelf online author events can be viewed on the Geelong Regional Libraries' YouTube page.

 

How to 'attend' an online author event

Our online events commence online at 7.30pm using the video webinar platform Zoom.

Find the event you are interested in via the "What's On" event calendar on our website. You may need to alter the search dates or other filters to find it. To book for an event, click on the "Register" button and please enter your name and email address as requested.

You will be emailed a unique zoom link as soon as you have registered. You will also receive a reminder email 24 hours before the event, and again one hour before the event begins. If you don't see our emails, please check your 'Junk' folder.

All bookings for online events remain open up until the event begins.

You do not need to a Zoom account to join a webinar, and all you need to do is just click on the link to automatically join via your web browser. 

The Zoom web browser client is available for manual download here. Mobile and Tablet users can also download the Zoom app for their device.

LINES TO THE HORIZON: AUSTRALIAN SURF WRITING

Join Jock Serong and Mark Smith as they discuss the importance of a "literary culture around surfing".

From Gold Coast surf culture to the life and death relationships of humans to the sea; from surf travel in Mexico to Taj Burrow’s final campaign in Fiji, this collection features six authors writing about surf, and the ocean, in six very different ways. Their stories are reverential, energetic and mystical and between them cover thousands of kilometres of coastline, at home and away.

TANIA FARRELLY - THE EIGHTH WONDER

The Suffragette meets The Greatest Showman in this story of passion and courage, as a young feminist fights against the rules of society to find her place in the world. New York, 1897. The richest city in the world. From Fifth Avenue mansions to Lower East Side tenements and the carnivals of Coney Island, The Eighth Wonder explores the brilliance and brutality of one of the world’s most progressive eras and celebrates the visionaries who dare to rebel.

JUDY NUNN - SHOWTIME!

Tuesday 28 September, 2021, 7.30-8.30pm

Judy Nunn's latest bestselling novel will take you from the cotton mills of England to the theatres of Melbourne, on a scintillating journey through the golden age of Australian showbusiness.

Waiting in the wings: Comedy, tragedy, passion and betrayal; economic depression, the Black Death and the horrors of World War One…

In conversation with author Fiona Lowe.

SHORT AND SWEET (SHORT STORY EVENT) - NEW AUSTRALIA FICTION 2020

Thursday, 7 October, 2021, 7:30pm - 8:30pm

Join us for an exploration of the short story genre hosted by local writer Charlotte Guest, with readings and contributions from writers Elizabeth Flux, Laura McPhee-Browne and Jack Vening.

New Australian Fiction 2020, published by Kill Your Darlings, features contributors from writers all around Australia. Their stories explore how characters respond to some of the most intriguing and urgent issues of our time, including genetic experimentation, nuclear fallout, and ongoing and destructive white-settler colonialism.

This event was hosted in partnership with publishers Kill Your Darlings and our bookseller for this event, The Book Bird in Geelong West, where you can re-purchase your book now.

JUSTICS FOR WOMEN IN RAPE CASES

Tuesday 14 September 2021, 7:30PM - 8:30PM

Our current Rule of Law in rape and sexual assault charges is so weighted against victim/survivors that rarely men are found guilty of these crimes and victim/survivors and often traumatised again. Very few women report these crimes, fewer get to court and even fewer have successful outcomes.

Often when women speak up about these crimes the public do not recognise the validity unless it is proved in criminal court. Not every woman wants a criminal process and less want the system we currently have.

At this event speakers including Adele Welsh from Geelong Women Unionist Network and Tony North QC, Chair of the Victorian Law Reform Commission and Facilitator Glenda Mac Naughton will discuss our current system in rape and sexual assault cases and explore changes and other ways for us to better provide justice for victim/survivors and the community.

STRENGTH AND POSITIVITY WHEN FACING CANCER

Geelong Region Cancerians are pleased to present as part of Women's Health Week, an inspiring panel of speakers who will share their personal experience and expertise when facing cancer.

A cancer diagnosis is never an easy thing to hear for the individual or their family and friends. While there are many challenges, there are also ways you can approach a cancer journey which will make the path much easier.

JUDITH HOARE - IN-CONVERSATION

Wednesday 25 August, 2021, 7.30-8.30pm

The Woman Who Cracked the Anxiety Code
The true story of the little-known mental-health pioneer who revolutionised how we see the defining problem of our era: anxiety. Panic, depression, sorrow, guilt, disgrace, obsession, sleeplessness, low confidence, loneliness, agoraphobia … Dr Claire Weekes knew how to treat them, but was dismissed as underqualified and overly populist by the psychiatric establishment. In a radical move, she had gone directly to the people.

SARA PHILLIPS - BEST AUSTRALIAN SCIENCE WRITING

Tuesday, 17 August,7:30pm - 8:30pm

This Inspiring Australia initiative is supported by the Australian Government as part of National Science Week. Can fish feel pain? Does it matter if a dingo is different from a dog? Science tackles some unexpected questions. Who better to navigate us through these unprecedented days than Australia’s best science writers? Now in its tenth year, the much-loved Best Australian Science Writing anthology selects the most riveting, poignant and entertaining science stories and essays from Australian writers, poets and scientists. Contributors include Rebecca Giggs, Carl Smith, Jo Chandler and many more.

TONY PARK - BLOOD TRAIL

Tuesday, August 10 7:30pm - 8:30pm

In Tony's 19th thriller "Blood Trail", written during lockdown, fictitious characters deal with the very real problems COVID has caused for Africa's endangered wildlife. Tony Park is the author of 19 bestselling thriller novels set in Africa. His 18th, Last Survivor, reached number one in South Africa. Tony grew up in the western suburbs of Sydney and has worked as a newspaper reporter, a press secretary, a PR consultant and a freelance writer. He also served 34 years in the Australian Army Reserve, including six months as a public affairs officer in Afghanistan in 2002. He and his wife, Nicola, divide their time equally between Australia and southern Africa.

MARIA TAKOLANDER - TRIGGER WARNING

Saturday, July 31 3:00pm - 4:00pm

Trigger Warning is not for the fainthearted, but neither are the elemental realities of domestic violence and environmental catastrophe that these astonishing poems address. Comprised of three sections, the first summons a difficult personal history by conversing with poets – from Sylvia Plath to Anne Carson – whose dramatised confessions trigger Takolander’s own. The second part remains focused on the domestic, while redeeming that scene of trauma through a reinventing wit. The final section of this extraordinary book turns its attention outside, playing with poetry itself in order to confront the Anthropocene and the final frontier of death. This is poetry that balances ruthlessness and lyrical beauty; poetry alive to its time and audience; poetry not to be missed..

GRAEME SIMSION AND ANNE BUIST - TWO STEPS ONWARD

Thursday, July 15 6:30pm - 7:30pm

Two Steps Onward is the wise, witty and wine-filled follow-up to Two Steps Forward, Graeme Simsion and Anne Buist's bestselling novel about walking the Camino. Three years after life got in the way of their long-distance relationship, Californian artist Zoe and English engineer Martin have an unexpected opportunity to reunite: a second chance to follow in the footsteps of pilgrims in Europe. This time, they won’t be walking the famous Camino de Santiago to north-west Spain but the less-travelled Chemin d’Assise and Via Francigena to Rome, along the mountainous paths from rural France.

 

DR NORMAN SWAN - SO YOU THINK YOU KNOW WHAT'S GOOD FOR YOU

Thursday, July 8, 12:30pm - 1:30pm

For over thirty years, Coronacaster Dr Norman Swan has been delivering straight, honest, common-sense health information to ordinary Australians as both a physician and much-loved broadcaster. Drawing on the questions he hears time and again, from millennials to baby boomers and all the generations between, So You Think You Know What's Good For You? is a one-stop handbook that will settle fruitless anxieties and allow people to focus on what matters to them. Replace medical myths, half-truths and misconceptions with the information you need to make better decisions about how to eat and how to live to put your mind at ease and ensure your and your family's health is the best it can be.

 

ANITA HEISS - BILA YARRUDHANGGALANGDHURAY

Thursday July 1, 7:30pm - 8:30pm

In-Conversation author event, facilitated by Belinda Duarte In the lead up to NAIDOC Week, join us for this unique new novel featuring Wiradjuri language throughout, by Wiradjuri woman, Dr Anita Heiss. Set in Gundagai in 1852, on timeless Wiradyuri country, Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray (River of Dreams) tells a story of courage, connection and belonging which is both universal and deeply personal. The powerful Murrumbidgee River surges through town leaving death and destruction in its wake. It is a stark reminder that while the river can give life, it can just as easily take it away. Dr Heiss will be joined by facilitator Belinda Duarte, a Wotjobaluk, Dja Dja Wurrung descendant and CEO of Culture is Life.

ALICE PUNG - ONE HUNDRED DAYS

Wednesday, June 16, 2021, 7.30-8.30pm

One Hundred Days is a fractured fairy tale exploring the Faultline's between love and control. At times tense and claustrophobic, it is nevertheless brimming with humour, warmth and character. It is a magnificent new work from one of Australia’s most celebrated writers. Alice Pung is an award-winning writer, editor, teacher and lawyer based in Melbourne. She is the bestselling author of Unpolished Gem and Her Father’s Daughter and the editor of the anthologies Growing Up Asian in Australia and My First Lesson.

MICHAEL E MANN - THE NEW CLIMATE WAR

Thursday 3 June

A World Environment Day Event

Renowned climate scientist, Michael E Mann, shows how fossil-fuel companies have waged a thirty-year campaign to deflect blame and responsibility and to delay action on climate change. In The New Climate War, renowned scientist Michael E. Mann argues that all is not lost. He draws the battle lines between the people and the polluters — fossil-fuel companies, right-wing plutocrats, and petro-states — and outlines a plan for forcing our governments and corporations to wake up and make real change.

GEELONG SUSTAINABILITY - LEARNING TO SAVE ON POWER BILLS

Thursday 20 May

The Geelong+ Community Solar Program is designed to help homeowners and businesses switch to clean, affordable energy with high quality solar and battery solutions, delivered by the region’s leading solar providers. At the information event you’ll learn: · How solar and batteries work · What you should consider when going solar or installing batteries · What brands and technologies are available today · How this program works and how you can get involved · How much a system can save on power bills and how much a system costs

DR ROBERT ISAACS - TWO CULTURES, ONE STORY

Tuesday 1 June

A Reconciliation Week Event

Dr Robert Francis Isaacs AM, OAM, PhD (Hon) has spent his life bridging the divide between white and black Australia. Taken from his mother as a baby, Robert was raised in institutions not knowing he had a family and not knowing he was Aboriginal. Enduring severe hardship, discipline and abuse at the hands of the Christian Brothers, Robert went out into the world at the age of 16 determined to make a life for himself and a family of his own.

HUGH MACKAY - THE KINDNESS REVOLUTION

Thursday 13 May 

2020 was ravaged by bushfires and a worldwide pandemic, taking a toll on both our mental and emotional health and the economy. Social psychologist and prolific author Hugh Mackay reflects on the challenges we faced during that year of upheaval and the questions many of us have asked ourselves: What really matters to me? Am I living the kind of life I want? What sort of society do we want to become?

Generous, erudite, optimistic and candid ... Hugh Mackay knows how to bring out the best in ourselves and in our society, in both good and troubled times.

NIKKI GEMMELL - THE RIPPING TREE

Wednesday 5 May

Author in-conversation with facilitator Suzanne Leal

The Ripping Tree is an intense, sharp shiver of a novel, which brings to mind such diverse influences as The Turn of the Screw, Rebecca and the film Get Out as much as it evokes The Secret River. Set in the early 1800s Australia, this is a powerful and gripping tale of survival written in Nikki Gemmell's signature lyrical and evocative prose, examining the darkness at the heart of early colonisation.

Unsettling, audacious, thrilling and unputdownable.

Nikki Gemmell is the international bestselling author of thirteen novels, including The Bride Stripped Bare, and four works of non-fiction, most recently her memoir of her mother's death, After. Her books have been translated in 22 languages.

SUE WILLIAMS - ELIZABETH & ELIZABETH

Wednesday 28 April

An Australian Heritage Festival event

Two courageous, tough and influential women, and a friendship that helped shape colonial Australia.

The story of how two women, who should have been bitter foes, combined their courage and wisdom to wield extraordinary power and influence behind the scenes of the fledgling colony.

One was Elizabeth Macquarie, the wife of the new governor Lachlan Macquarie, nudging him towards social reform and magnificent buildings and town planning. The other was Elizabeth Macarthur, the wife of John Macarthur, a dangerous enemy of the establishment, who is herself credited with creating Australia's wool industry.

Moving in the same social circles and embroiled in the same politics, gradually the two women found common ground and supported each other through the difficulties of colonial life.

ALLI SINCLAIR - THE CODEBREAKERS

Thursday, April 22

In-conversation with Heritage Centre Manager, Mark Beasley.

A compelling story about tenacity and friendship, inspired by the real codebreaking women of Australia's top-secret Central Bureau in WWII.

An Australian Heritage Festival event.

SARAH KRASNOSTEIN - THE BELIEVER

From the bestselling author of The Trauma Cleaner.

This book is about ghosts and gods and flying saucers and certainty in the absence of knowledge.
From award-winning author Sarah Krasnostein comes an exploration of the power of belief. Weaving together the stories of six extraordinary ordinary people, The Believer looks at the stories we tell ourselves to deal with the distance between the world as it is, and the world as we’d like it to be. How they can stunt us – or save us.

Some of the people you will meet believe in things most people don’t. Ghosts. UFOs. Heaven and the Devil. The literal creation of the universe in six days.

Others believe in things most people would like to. Dying with autonomy. Facing one’s own transgressions with an open heart.

 

JOHN BARTLETT - AWAKE AT 3AM

Sunday 11 April

John Bartlett is the author of three novels, a collection of short stories and published non-fiction. He is a reviewer, interviewer, former tutor of Creative Writing at Deakin University and a creative writing workshop facilitator. His poetry has been published in a number of Australian and overseas journals. 

In June 2019 Melbourne Poets Union released his Chapbook The Arms of Men and in 2020 Ginninderra Press published Songs of the Godforsaken as part of its Picaro Poets’ series as well as his full poetry collection Awake at 3am in late 2020.  He was the winner of the 2020 Ada Cambridge Poetry Prize.

“Loss, longing and nostalgia infuse the poems in this poignant collection. Some poems are elegiac, some confessional, others alert to environmental exploitation, sexuality and human suffering. Here is a poet engaged with his world and showing us what it is to remember, to question, to see and feel.” (Julie Maclean)

“Awake at 3AM is a truly superb collection of outstanding poems.” (Maggie Farr)

 

PIP WILLIAMS - THE DICTIONARY OF LOST WORDS

Thursday 8 April

In-conversation with Geelong author, Jen Kloester.

Pip Williams is the author of the much-loved memoir One Italian Summer and the national number one bestseller, The Dictionary of Lost Words.

Kasey Edwards and Christopher Scanlon - Raising Girls Who Like Themselves

Wednesday 31 March

GEELONG DESIGN WEEK: COMPELLING BOOK DESIGN - RE-THINKING THE COVER

Wednesday 24 March 

Think book design is just about creating the perfect book cover? Think again. Words, pages, cover, spine, ink - book design includes many elements and a good design needs to bring everything together in a way that grabs the readers’ attention and compels them to explore more.
This event is part of Geelong Design Week 2021, an initiative of Geelong UNESCO City of Design and the City of Greater Geelong.

GEELONG DESIGN WEEK: BE INSPIRED BY HUMANS IN GEELONG

Tuesday 23 March 

In keeping with the 'Unpredictable' theme of Geelong Design Week, their dynamic team members will inspire, disrupt and be provocative by showcasing: • Doing it differently – positively, influencing the agenda • The Humans in Geelong multimedia model • Humans in Geelong amazing stories and their positive effects • Pictures, film clips • Highlights of the Humans in Geelong Expos and Online Expo 2020 This event is part of Geelong Design Week 2021, an initiative of Geelong UNESCO City of Design and the City of Greater Geelong.

ROSS GARNAUT - RESET

Thursday 11 March.

Annual Lecture in Memory of Fiona Baranowski.
In Reset, esteemed economist and best-selling author Ross Garnaut shows how the COVID-19 crisis offers Australia the opportunity to reset its conomy and build a successful future – and why the old approaches will not work. Garnaut develops the idea of a renewable superpower and calls for a basic income as he explores what the ‘decoupling’ of China and America will mean for Australia. Reset is the groundbreaking sequel to Superpower.

This lecture is held each year in memory of Geelong Regional Libraries’ staff member, Fiona Baranowski. Fiona, who passed away in March 2015, is remembered for her long history and valuable contribution to library services in the Geelong region.

GIDEON HAIGH - THE MOMENTOUS, UNEVENTFUL DAY

Thursday 25 February

Has COVID-19 ushered in the end of the office? Or is it the office’s final triumph? For decades, futurologists have prophesied a boundary-less working world, freed from the cramped confines of the office. During the COVID-19 crisis, employees around the globe got a taste of it. Confined by lockdown to their homes, they met, mingled, collaborated, and created electronically. In The Momentous, Uneventful Day, Gideon Haigh reflects on our ambivalent relationship to office work and office life, how we ended up with the offices we have, how they have reflected our best and worst instincts, and how these might be affected by a world in a time of contagion.

Please note this recording is audio only.

DEBORAH RODRIGUEZ - THE MOROCCAN DAUGHTER

Deborah Rodriguez is the author of the international bestsellers The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul, Return to the Little Coffee Shop of Kabul, The Zanzibar Wife and Island on the Edge of the World.

Morocco: a captivating country of honour and tradition. And, for four women, a land of secrets and revelations.

From the twisted alleyways of the ancient medina of Fès to a marriage festival high in the Atlas Mountains, Deborah Rodriguez’s entrancing new bestseller is a modern story of forbidden love set in the sensual landscape of North Africa.

Deborah lives in Mazatlán, Mexico and will be joining us via Zoom for this special online, lunchtime event.

Deborah will be in conversation with author Suzanne Leal, whose novel The Deceptions recently won the Nib Literary Award People’s Choice Prize.

 

GROWING UP DISABLED IN AUSTRALIA - PANEL DISCUSSION

Unfortunately the recording of this event has been corrupted whilst processing from a livestream to an on-demand recording on YouTube, and is no longer working. Our sincere apologies that this event is not available for on-demand viewing.

One in five Australians has a disability. And disability presents itself in many ways. Yet disabled people are still underrepresented in the media and in literature. Growing Up Disabled in Australia is the fifth book in the highly acclaimed, bestselling Growing Up series. It includes interviews with prominent Australians such as Senator Jordon Steele-John and Paralympian Isis Holt, as well as poetry and graphic art, and more than 40 original pieces by writers with a disability or chronic illness.

Led by Editor, writer and appearance activist Carly Findlay, and featuring a number of Victorian-based contributors, this panel discussion event explores some of the most pressing issues faced by those living with a disability.

 

JENNY HOCKING - THE PALACE LETTERS

Thursday 4 February, 2021, 7.30-8.30pm

Professor Jenny Hocking waged a ten-year campaign and a four-year legal battle to force the National Archives of Australia to release the letters written by Governor General John Kerr to the Queen during one of the most divisive episodes in the nation’s history – the dismissal. In May 2020, despite being opposed by the Archives, Buckingham Palace, and the full resources of the federal government, she won her historic case in the High Court. 'The Palace Letters' is the ground-breaking account of her indomitable fight.