What a smashing few days we had at the Sydney Writers’ Festival. There was such a banquet of ideas and authors to choose from that we were spoilt for choice.

As usual, we tried to get a mix of authors, including debut authors, covering a range of fiction genres from Australia and overseas. This year, we interviewed Pulitzer Prize winner Jennifer Egan, Stella Prize winner Charlotte Wood, the inimitable Richard Fidler, the amazing Annabel Crabb, Australia’s Sophie Green and Wales’ own Emma Glass. We also interviewed festival-goers and volunteers to get their take on proceedings. Everyone was pretty hyped and pretty happy.

We had so much good footage that we thought it indecent to either cut it, or cram it all into a one-hour episode, so we divided it into two episodes. Part 1 today’s, (Monday’s), episode features Jennifer Egan, Richard Fidler and Annabel Crabb. Part 2 will go live later in the week. We loved this episode so we are pretty sure that you will have your cuppa at hand, ready to luxuriate in the second episode, when it comes out.

A quick rundown on the highlights for Part 1:

Jennifer Egan was in Australia promoting her latest novel Manhattan Beach. We’d love to know if anyone has read this yet. Jennifer writes the first draft of her novels by hand because she believes it is more meditative and sensory and takes her into her chosen worlds. She is also a keen baker, having inherited a special pie crust recipe.

Richard Fidler was at the SWF promoting his latest book, Saga Land, which he co-authored with Kari Gislason. We literally bumped into him and asked if he would do a quick interview with us. He kindly, and happily, obliged and we discovered his favourite recipe is Icelandic Stew. Richard isn’t a big cook but when he does don the apron, he opts for one-pot wonders.

Annabel Crabb was appearing on panels and spared us a precious few minutes before her session. She was, as always, marvellous and regaled us with hilarious stories, such as her worst cooking disaster: a meal she cooked as a rookie for Helen Garner while in London. Not surprisingly, the Kitchen Cabinet queen had some fantastic cookbooks up her sleeve.

You can check out Richard, Annabel’s book and the vox pop cookbook recommendations here.

We are really looking forward to your feedback on this episode as we think it is our best yet.

We would also deeply appreciate it if those who haven’t done so already could hit the red subscribe button on the Youtube channel because under new rules, Youtube requires we reach 1,000 subscribers within a year to be considered a viable concern.