The Sydney Writer’s Festival and Meeting Cheryl Strayed

Cheryl Strayed

The Sydney Writer’s Festival just so happened to be going on while I was in town and I’m glad I went.  Working full time and going to grad school didn’t leave me much energy to write so it was refreshing to be among writers and get some inspiration at a time when I could refocus on anything I wanted.

My friend Sasha and I went to a panel discussion about what exactly makes an international best-seller with publishers discussing the appeal of plot, characters, and writing style. We were also lucky enough to hear Cheryl Strayed, the author of the uber-successful Wild, speak about the book and her life. After her talk, Cheryl signed books for everyone including my friend and we got to say a quick hello and she was sweet as can be. I read Wild earlier in the year and admired the vulnerability in her writing and especially her advice during her hour-long talk. The host asked her what she would tell her twenty-something self and she said she would tell herself not to worry because everything would sort itself out.

I definitely worry more than I should or need to so Strayed’s advice was a gentle nudge to remind me to focus on what’s most important, one of those things being my writing. If there is any advice I could give to someone, it would be to stop worrying, go travel, and get some perspective. It does wonders for the mind.

Sydney Writer's Festival

Sydney Writer's Festival

Sydney Writer's Festival

Sydney Writer's Festival

Sydney Writer's Festival

Sydney Writer's Festival

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