Sydney was founded by criminals and those who guarded them. Its convict culture helped shape egalitarian Australia. From the Rum Corps of the First Fleet to the razor gangs of the 1920s, to the corruption and colorful characters of the 1970s and the drive-by shootings that came later, you cannot understand this city completely without its vital criminal subculture. BAD is an exploration of the dark side that is part of being human.


1Trends in crime fiction
The Sydney Morning Herald’s respected crime fiction reviewer Sue Turnbull reflects on how crime fiction has changed over 20 years.
Sue Turnbull10:00AM -11:00AMWater Police Court
2The legacy of Bob Bottom
Bob Bottom in conversation with Michael Duffy on how he alerted Australia to the existence of organised crime.
Bob Bottom, Michael Duffy10:00AM -11:00AMSeminar Room
3Voluntary euthanasia
Mark Tedeschi QC, Nikki Gemmell, and Fr Frank Brennan SJ with Denis Tracey discuss why assisted suicide is still a crime when most of the population supports it.
Fr Frank Brennan SJ, Mark Tedeschi QC, Nikki Gemmell, Denis Tracey11:30AM -12:30PMWater Police Court
4Blue Murders
The Daily Telegraph crime editor Mark Morri with ex-detectives and authors Duncan McNab and Clive Small on the corrupt history of the NSW Police.
Duncan McNab, Clive Small, Mark Morri11:30AM -12:30PMSeminar Room
5Domestic Noir
Authors Caroline Overington and Megan Goldin talk with publisher Anna Valdinger about this huge literary phenomenon. Just how new is it, and where will it go next?
Anna Valdinger, Caroline Overington, Megan Goldin1:00PM – 2:00PMWater Police Court
6Mass Murder in Colonial NSW
Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Tedeschi talks to Michael Duffy about his book, Murder at Myall Creek.
Mark Tedeschi QC, Michael Duffy1:00PM – 2:00PMSeminar Room
7Michael Robotham
One of Australia’s most acclaimed and popular authors reflects on his work, including his new book, and crime fiction generally.
Michael Robotham2:30PM – 3:30PMWater Police Court
8Middle Eastern Appearance
Authors Clive Small and the The Daily Telegraph’s Yoni Bashan talk about the way ethnic crime gangs have shaped the Sydney underworld in recent decades. SOLD OUT
Yoni Bashan, Clive Small2:30PM – 3:30PMSeminar Room
9Judgment Day
Former judges Brian Knox SC and Michael Finnane QC talk with Rachel Franks about sentencing and provide a rare glimpse of what it’s like to be a judge.
Rachel Franks, Brian Knox, Michael Finnane4:00PM – 5:00PMWater Police Court
10Advice for writers with Caroline Overington
Best-selling novelist provides advice on writing a successful novel. To provide enough time for questions, the session is limited to 10 places. SOLD OUT
Caroline Overington4:00PM – 5:00PMSeminar Room
1From Underbelly to Bowraville
Detective Inspector Gary Jubelin of the NSW Homicide Squad talks with Michael Duffy about a career of often high-profile cases, including being played by an actor in the major TV series Underbelly: Badness.
Gary Jubelin, Michael Duffy10:00AM -11:00AMWater Police Court
2Mirror or window?
Authors Malla Nunn, Barry Maitland and Beverley Cousins talk with Denis Tracey about the reasons for crime fiction’s deep appeal to so many of us.
Beverley Cousins, Malla Nunn, Barry Maitland, Denis Tracey10:00AM -11:00AMSeminar Room
3Kate McClymont’s Sydney
The Sydney Morning Herald’s famous investigative journalist in conversation with Suzanne Leal about Sydney and crime.
Kate McClymont, 11:30AM -12:30PMWater Police Court
4Advice for writers with Malla Nunn
Acclaimed novelist provides advice on writing a successful novel. To provide enough time for questions, the session is limited to 10 places.
Malla Nunn11:30AM -12:30PMSeminar Room
5Lee Child (by Skype)
Andy Martin, author of Reacher Said Nothing, a highly original book about Lee Child, discusses thrillers with the master and with best-selling local writer James Phelan.
Lee Child, Andy Martin, James Phelan1:00PM – 2:00PMWater Police Court
6Dark Archives
Author and academic Peter Doyle delves into the story of the Kingsgrove Slasher while curator Nerida Campbell considers the rapidly changing criminal landscape of the 1920s.
Nerida Campbell, Peter Doyle1:00PM – 2:00PMSeminar Room
7Criminal minds
Forensic psychologist Tim Watson-Munro and The Daily Telegraph’s Matthew Benns, author of Dirty Money, talk to Kate Evans about how crooks differ from other people.
Recorded by Radio National for its Books & Arts program
Kate Evans, Matthew Benns, Tim Watson-Munro2:30PM – 3:30PMWater Police Court
8The Clarke Gang
Author Peter C. Smith in conversation with Michael Duffy on New South Wales’ most violent bushrangers and why they remain largely unknown.
Peter Smith, Michael Duffy2:30PM – 3:30PMSeminar Room
9Gratuitous Sex & Violence?
Sue Turnbull speaks with critic and actor Graeme Blundell and film-maker Peter Gawler about crime on screen. How is it different from crime in books?
Recorded by Radio National for its Books & Arts program
Graeme Blundell, Peter Gawler, Sue Turnbull4:00PM – 5:00PMWater Police Court