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A message from Louise Adler AM, Director of Adelaide Writers' Week

The world has finally reopened, and we are discovering our social selves, our pleasure in gathering together. I can think of no better place to celebrate what we share and what we understand than Adelaide Writers’ Week, to reflect on the world at large and at small, to marvel at the craft, creativity and imagination of writers and to savour conversations with substance that stir our hearts and change our minds.

The thread that weaves through the 2023 program of literary luminaries, writers on their way and novitiates is the notion of truth - truths we acknowledge, truths we feel are debatable and those beyond debate. Do we want truthfulness in fiction or does it only matter in nonfiction? Do novelists owe us the truth? Is the biographer’s task to tell nothing but the truth about their subject? Is my truth The Truth and yours simply your truth and therefore partial, imprecise or even suspect? Is any truth incontestable, universal? Does truth matter and if so, how should it be upheld in a world crammed with falsehoods, lies, misinformation and inaccuracies? If all ideas are reimagined or appropriated, if originality is a fallacious delusion nurtured in an artist’s garret, does truth even matter anymore?

In curating the 2023 program I was provoked by Fran Lebowitz’s aperçu “a book is not a mirror; it is a door through which the reader is invited to walk”. It is an enlarging proposition – reminding us that narcissism is only really interesting to the narcissist, that good books take us to places, ideas and emotions we do not fully understand. The best writing shows us that our inner lives are made richer by context, by encounters real or imagined. Join us for conversations that transcend the banal, elude the everyday; conversations that will change your mind, be exhilarated by discovering new voices and honour writers who have shaped our reading habits and been beloved companions for many year.