The Brisbane Writers’ Festival has come and gone for another year, and what a great time was had by all. I heard some inspiring authors and some spirited debate. Geoffrey Robertson delivered the opening address, and spoke with passion about the festival theme What the World Needs Now. I attended a Men’s Mental Health Session with Sam Maguire, Osher Gunsberg and Joe Williams – all thoughtful and considered men, and a session about refugees and the power of hope with the founder of the Asylum Seeker Resource Seeker, Kon Karapanagiotidis and historian Dr Claire Wright. I attended a powerful and compassionate panel about growing up, adolescence and gender identity with trans activist Nevo Zisan, Madonna King, Amanda Dunn and Susan Johnson. I heard AJ Finn and Trent Dalton talk about their writing. I participated in a panel with Kali Napier and Ben Hobson about stories of secrets and shame. I caught up with lots of writerly friends in the green room and met a few new friends that until now I had only known on social media. My publisher UQP held a social event one night where I mingled with friends old and new, and this was followed up by a BWF event on the 21st floor of the new Emporium Hotel. It was a whirlwind of fun and interesting people and I’m already looking forward to next year!