‘I want you to get goosebumps. I want you to feel my book,’ writer says

ABOVE: Jane Caro, Mirandi Riwoe, Huda Fadlelmawla and Nigel Featherstone at Kyogle Library.

Susanna Freymark

Writerly wisdom was on offer and 40 people soaked it up when the Story Bus stopped at Kyogle Library.

The Writers on the Road were Jane Caro, Nigel Featherstone and Mirandi Riwoe with poet Huda Fadlelmawla and facilitator Zachary Jane.

They talked about writing female characters including whether male authors could write women well.

“I like Charles Dickens but he wrote shithouse female characters,” Jane said.

Nigel responded with “I’m gay so it’s all fine”.

Author Nigel Featherstone.

He spoke about Annie Proulx writing Brokeback Mountain in 1977. The story about two gay cowboys was made into a movie.

Jane wrote a gay character in her new book The Mother.

The group talked about reviews and Zachary asked Nigel how he felt about a reviewer who called his book “smutty”.

He wished he was strong enough to not read reviews.

Mirandi writes about different worlds in her novels. Despite the setting, her stories usually had the same themes.

“Racism, feminism, food, love and children are my themes and my obsessions,” Mirandi said.

“If you feel something, your audience will feel it too.”

Writers on the Road visit Kyogle Library.

They spoke about their writing processes. Nigel wears the same clothes when he writes by hand in his study.

Jane can write anywhere, something she learned when she had young children and had to write in “snatches” when she had time.

Huda writes when she is inspired.

“I am sensory,” the enthusiastic poet said.

“I want you to get goosebumps. I want you to feel my book.

“The most beautiful thing about human beings is you cannot deny what you feel.

“I can write about a puddle on the ground.”

The audience at the library. Photos: Susanna Freymark

The poet and four writers are speaking at the Byron Bay Writers Festival this weekend.

The event was organised by the Kyogle Writers Festival group.

Watch Huda’s poetry performance at the Kyogle Library in the video below.

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