Women connect at novel event


Late this year, mysterious packages will be arriving in the mailboxes of women in Kulin and further afield.

The packages will contain three books by well-known West Australian writers and be a precursor to an evening in March, where women have an opportunity to attend an elegant event to discuss the books over a three-course meal.

The four volunteers behind the aptly-named 'A Novel Event' are eagerly awaiting the chance to bring women from across regional WA together for an evening of laughs and literature in Kulin.

Gen Whisson, Nicole Thompson, Deirdre Carroll and Janine Noble formed a committee earlier this year with the aim to bring a new and vibrant event to the town.

The concept began following a visit to the Dumbleyung 'Diamonds in the Dust' evening.

It was an inspiring event and got the ladies thinking about what they could do in their own town.

At the same time, the community was dealing with difficult seasonal conditions so a driving factor was bringing about an event to look forward to which allowed women to connect in a special atmosphere.

They wanted to create a unique event for the local women of Kulin but it was also an opportunity to showcase their town to others.

When they struck on the novel concept, they decided to aim high - a glamorous evening for up to 200 women.

In a town which hosts the iconic Tin Horse Highway tourist attraction and the annual Kulin Bush Races, they had no shortage of role models.

"Kulin is a town where people just volunteer, get things done and the end results are fantastic - just look at the bush races," Janine said.

Their enthusiasm and drive was rewarded, with the authors and sponsors keen to come on board, along with renowned Australian comedian Corrine Grant who will come from Melbourne to host the event.

The featured books include the latest offering from well-known country romance writer Fiona Palmer, The Outback Heart, travel writer Stephen Scourfield's new novel As the River Runs, and the debut novel of Stephen Daisley, winner of the Prime Minister's Literary Award for Fiction in 2011, titled Traitor.

The authors will attend in person on the evening to discuss their work in an interactive, fun and relaxed atmosphere.

Gen said they had been overwhelmed with the generous support from sponsors and the authors.

"The feedback we've had from the authors is that they love community, grassroots events where they can talk to people about their books and see the impact that many months of writing, often by themselves in a room on a computer, has on people," she said.

"In the case of Stephen Daisley, he knew Fiona lived in the area (Pingaring) and was keen to see where she was from."

The demand for tickets has been overwhelming, with a third of tickets sold within a couple of days of them going on sale.

"You don't have to belong to a book club to take part. Our aim is to get people together, get them talking and offer them a vibrant and fun night out," Gen said.

For Deirdre, it's also a great way for women to build on connections with people they might see every day in town and also with people from surrounding areas, something the four women took from the Dumbleyung event.

The next step is the getting the books gift wrapped and sent.

"The books are all ordered and will be delivered to the participants in December," Nicole said.

"They'll be beautifully wrapped and it's nice for people to get something special in the post. We are so excited knowing that ladies throughout the region will be thrilled when the books arrive in their mailbox."

A Novel Event: An Evening of Laughs and Literature will take place in Kulin on March 1, 2014, at the Freebairn Recreation Centre, Kulin.

The $75 ticket includes three-course meal, entertainment and three books by the guest authors.

Bookings and enquiries can be made to Janine Noble at janine_kulin@yahoo.com.au .

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails