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Australian Short Story Festival 2020 cancelled

The organising committee of the Australian Short Story Festival (ASSF) has announced the 2020 festival will not go ahead in October in Adelaide as planned, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

‘We believe that online festival experiences can never quite replicate the immediacy of the face-to-face festival, and with the current restrictions on the size of gatherings, the inability for many writers to travel at this time, and too many uncertainties attached to the global pandemic, we feel that cancelling this year’s ASSF is the right choice to make,’ said the committee in a statement.

‘Rather than invest into an uncertain time, we will instead be focusing our energies on producing a spectacular Australian Short Story Festival experience in 2021, when we look forward to bringing some of the world’s best short story writers together to meet in Adelaide.’

The committee said the short story prize the festival runs in partnership with the Australian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP) will still go ahead. The winner, to be announced next month, receives a ticket to the 2021 festival, accommodation and return economy airfares, as well as fully subsidised conference fees to AAWP’s annual conference in November 2020 on the Gold Coast, Queensland.

ASSF co-founder and co-director Anna Solding, publisher at MidnightSun Publishing, said she is disappointed not to be able to offer the festival this year but is excited about the 2021 festival. ‘We have a fabulous committee working on bringing the most amazing new short story writers to the attention of the general public,’ she said. Writer Tony Birch has been announced as the festival’s new patron.

The festival was due to take place from Friday, 16 October to Sunday, 18 October 2020. The festival will next take place from 5–7 November 2021.



Category: Local news