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Fri 19 Sep 2008–Sun 21 Sep 2008, 7:00pm

Where: Titirangi War Memorial Hall, 500 South Titirangi Rd, Titirangi, Auckland

Ticket Information:

  • Adult Full Weekend: $150.00 ea
  • Concession Full Weekend: $120.00 ea
  • Adult Friday Evening: $30.00 ea
  • Concession Friday Evening: $22.00 ea
  • Adult Full Day (Sat or Sun): $85.00 ea
  • Concession Full Day (Sat or Sun): $70.00 ea
  • Adult Single Session: $15.00 ea
  • Concession Single Session: $10.00 ea
  • Additional fees may apply

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Listed by: SWPR Ltd

Leading contemporary New Zealand writers, an award-winning theatre production, a book market, poetry slam and free family day are all part of Going West Books and Writers Festival 2008 in West Auckland in August and September.

The annual festival features five main events – the theatre season of Strange Resting Places at Glen Eden Playhouse Theatre from 27 to 30 August, the Book Market and Poetry Slam which both take place at the Titirangi War Memorial Hall on September 13, the Literary Weekend ‘The Word Around Us’ from 19-21 September and Storyfest on Saturday 27 September.

Now in its 13th year, Going West Books and Writers Festival has become a major event on the Waitakere calendar, offering plenty of opportunities for people of all ages to engage, be entertained and challenged, and immerse themselves in a festival which celebrates not only the literary world, but West Auckland’s wonderful hospitality!

The festival begins with the theatre season and is quickly followed by the Book Market where hidden treasures can always be found (and there are experts on site for on-the-spot valuations). After spending the morning browsing through books, take part in the Poetry Slam … as a poet or a voting member of the audience.

The major event of Going West Books and Writers Festival is the Literary Weekend at the Titirangi War Memorial Hall – a weekend which has become known for its exciting mix of New Zealand and Pacific writers, thinkers and performers.

Themed ‘The Word Around Us’, programme director Murray Gray has once again brought together an entertaining and challenging line-up – stay for the entire weekend or dip into sessions which appeal. Here’s a taste:
- Award-winning poet Chris Price shares her observations on the slipperiness of ‘truth’
- Polynation – experience the performance power of nine Pasifika poets
- Eco-writers Francesca Price, Gareth Renowden and Niki Harré discuss how sustainable living might lead to a brighter future
- Poet and novelist Alison Wong, performance poet Renee Liang and novelist Mo Zhi Hong talk with journalist Gilbert Wong about Chinese New Zealand writing
- Ngahuia Te Awetotuku shares the story of the quest to create Mau Moko – The World of Maori Tattoo, a magnificent illustrated history of the process and tradition of Maori tattoo which has just won the Lifestyle and Contemporary Culture category at the 2008 Montana New Zealand Book Awards
- Dame Fiona Kidman relives the heady days of broadcasting in the 1960s with writer and broadcaster Karyn Hay
- Cultural curmudgeon* Hamish Keith and writer and occasional political curmudgeon Bob Harvey share a “full and frank” conversation (*churlish or miserly fellow)
- John Dix (Stranded in Paradise), Nick Bollinger (How To Listen to Pop Music) and Gareth Shute (NZ Rock 1987-2007) join professional musicians Kim Willoughby (When The Cats Away) and Ian Morris (Th’ Dudes, DD Smash, Tex Pistols to compare notes on the NZ music scene PLUS live music from West Auckland jump blues band Stingray!
- Poet Janet Charman reads from her collection Cold Snack which won the poetry category at the 2008 Montana New Zealand Book Awards
- The Night Kitchen – a look into the lives of three NZ writers – Sarah Laing, Karlo Mila nd David Larsen – fitting their work in around busy lives with children
- Well-known fiction writer Laurence Fearnley talks about her writing life
- From Distant Villages – a Croatian celebration with storytelling, readings from the newly-published book From Distant Villages and traditional song
- Plus celebrations of the works of Nigel Cox, Dame Ngaio Marsh and Barry Barclay

The final event for Going West Books and Writers Festival is the annual free family day, Storyfest on Saturday 27 September at Kelston Community Centre. Themed ‘On the move – journeys great and small’, Storyfest is a fun day of storytelling, performances, workshops, mural art and entertainment.

Going West Books and Writers Festival 2008 also includes a series of exhibitions and workshops at Waitakere galleries and art centres as well as a touring programme which involves sending three writers around 14 West Auckland schools to talk about their writing.

Important dates to remember:
27-30 August: Strange Resting Places, Glen Eden Playhouse Theatre
13 September: Book Market; Poetry Slam
19-21 September: Literary Weekend ’The Word Around Us’
27 September: Storyfest

The programme for Going West Books and Writers Festival 2008 is out now – for more information visit

Restaurants to book near Going West Books and Writers Festival: 'The Word Around Us'