Join the literary extravaganza

Local author Amra Pajalic will be part of this year's Brimbank Writers and Readers Festival. (Damjan Janevski) 387734_01

Hannah Hammoud

Mark your calendars, the Brimbank Writers and Readers Festival is on the horizon, set to be held from March 14-23.

One of the highlights of the festival includes the opportunity to hear from author Amra Pajalic, a resident of St Albans known for her captivating novels set in the vibrant suburb.

Having been part of the Brimbank Writers and Readers Festival on multiple occasions, Pajalic brings a unique perspective shaped by her experiences growing up between St Albans and Bosnia. Her memoir delves into the complexities of identity and belonging, chronicling her upbringing by a Bosnian mother with a bipolar disorder.

“I’m a St Albans local, I’ve lived here most of my life. I love the fact that St Albans is multicultural. It represents the real Australia,” she said.

Pajalic’s literary endeavours extend to a young adult series titled ‘Sassy Saints’, which also unfolds against the backdrop of St Albans. Through her writing, she explores themes of cultural diversity, coming of age, and the challenges faced by young carers in the western suburbs.

On March 17, from 2-3pm, Pajalic will join in conversation with Demet Divaroren at the St Albans Library to discuss her latest novel, ’Jesse’s Triumph’.

“’Jesse’s Triumph’ is the third book in the series, that explores Jesse’s life, who carries the burden of growing up to soon and being the carer of his mum… that’s what a lot of young people in the western suburbs face, taking on responsibilities at home, and juggling trying to be an adolescent,” Pajalic said.

“We have a high proportion of young carers in the western suburbs and it’s something that was my life with my mum who was a bipolar sufferer. In this book I reflect on my own experiences but also speak to that universal understanding that young people are quite complex.”

In addition to her writing, Pajalic has ventured into publishing, establishing her own small press to ensure accessibility to her books. Her commitment to inclusivity is evident in the various formats in which her works are available, including dyslexic font, audiobook, paperback, hard cover, e-book, and large print.

“As a teacher, I’m focused on supporting young readers, which is why accessibility is a priority for me,“ said Pajalic.

As part of the Brimbank Writers and Readers Festival, Pajalic will engage in conversations about her work, offering insights into her creative process and the themes that resonate throughout her writing.

Pajalic will also host a self-publishing workshop on March 23, from 2-4pm at the Sydenham Neighbourhood House to share all the ins and outs about self-publishing.

Don’t miss the chance to hear from Amra Pajalic and other talented authors as they share their stories with the community. There is no entry cost for all events.

For more information on the festival visit