Mental health & robots at the Nelson Arts Festival

The Nelson Arts Festival programme was launched last week, and coordinator Kerry Sunderland has done a brilliant job with this year's Page & Blackmore Readers & Writers programme - in particular snaring Maurice Gee for a rare, free public event as he launches his new memoir! After poring through the catalogue I'm looking forward to that, as well as seeing as many book sessions as possible - the 10 for $90 concession pass is a good deal if you want to binge on books for two weekends in a row, and is available only from the Theatre Royal.

I'll be contributing to two panel sessions at the Granary on October 21. The first, The Robots are Coming, is chairing a session with poet Helen Heath (Are Friends Electric?), Dr Jo Cribb and David Glover (Don't Worry About the Robots: How to Survive and Thrive in the New World of Work). We'll be discussing the current and impending impacts of robots on our lives.

The second is called Mind Matters, and is a discussion of mental health, including Headlands contributor Danyl McLauchlan and Green MP Chloe Swarbrick, chaired by Liz Price. We'll be asking what enables recovery, how families can support their loved ones, and what changes are needed to make sure people get the help they need. 

Check out the rest of the programme - don't miss out!