A novel approach to storytelling puts Western Downs in the good books

Published on 23 November 2022


The region's award-winning readers and writers festival ‘Words Out West’ returns in March 2023 with a line-up of events to delight word-lovers of all ages.

Back for its fourth year, Words Out West: Western Downs Readers & Writers Fest will celebrate storytelling for the month of March, featuring 14 events across ten locations in the Western Downs.

Councillor Kaye Maguire, Council Spokesperson for Community and Cultural Development said Words Out West was a celebration of the power of words in all their forms and offered attendees an opportunity to be a part of outstanding cultural experiences in the Western Downs.

"Words Out West is fast making its mark on Australia's literary event map, and it's easy to see why — it's a rare mix of top-notch personalities and unique events that you'll be hard-pressed to find anywhere else.

"In 2023 we'll have an entire month's worth of wording-events through the region featuring some of Australia's most popular storytellers; including triple-Olympian Lisa Curry, actor and author William McInnes, Rugby League legend Brett Tate, beloved Australiana novelist Rachael Johns and former Australian Children's Laureate Morris Gleitzman.

"Though Sam Johnson will be a tough act to follow, we certainly have something special in store for the Friday night gala event. In 2023 we're so pleased to also bring you the incredible story of Saroo Brierley — a tale of courage, hope and resilience that launched 2016's Lion movie, starring Nicole Kidman and Dev Patel, into blockbuster status."

Cr Maguire said the 2023 festival was shaping up to be bigger and better than ever.

"Along with Author Tour, Books & Bubbles gala, Festival Day, Writers Retreat and relaxed Schooners & Stories events, we expect to welcome over 1,800 students from across the region to our free School Days in Dalby and Chinchilla," she said.

"For the first time, we'll also be offering a tailored one-day workshop for high-school aged writers to sharpen their skills.

"And as always, our annual Words Out West Short Story Competition comes with high esteem, and some very lucrative prizes up for grabs. This year's theme of 'Bright Lights' promises some creative entries."

Words Out West Events Calendar at a Glance

Author Tour: In Conversation with Rachael Johns
Wednesday 1 to Friday 3 March,
Jandowae, Chinchilla, Wandoan, Miles, Tara, and Dalby

Schooners & Stories: An Evening with Brett Tate
Friday 10 and Saturday 11 March
Juandah Hotel, Wandoan and The Bun Pub, Kaimkillenbun

Books & Bubbles: With Lion's Saroo Brierley
Friday 24 March
Dalby Events Centre

Festival Day
Saturday 25 March
Dalby Events Centre

Writers Retreat (Adult and Youth sessions)
Sunday 26 March
Dalby Events Centre

School Days
Tuesday 28 and Wednesday 29 March
Dalby and Chinchilla

Tickets for next year's Words Out West festival are on sale now. To purchase, and for more information, visit www.wordsoutwest.info

— Ends —