Greece travel book to be showcased in Writers’ Festival event

16 May, 2024

Prestigious Words on the Waves Writers’ Festival book launch program to feature ‘Repacking for Greece: A Mediterranean Odyssey’

The launch of Repacking for Greece, released as the second book in Australian travel writer Sally Jane Smith’s ‘Packing for Greece’ series, will be celebrated at a multi-author event hosted by the prestigious Words on the Waves Writers’ Festival on the New South Wales Central Coast.

Smith will join Deborah Pike (author of The Players) and Meg Vertigan (author of The Strong Dress) at a free, public book launch event at Tuggerah Library on the evening of Wednesday, 5th June 2024. “There’ll be olives and feta, of course, and a glass of bubbles to mark the occasion,” says Smith. “It’s such an honour to have my work selected by Words on the Waves, a festival that has transformed the literary landscape of the Central Coast. All are welcome to attend; just grab your free ticket through the festival website at”

An ideal armchair travel companion for those remembering, dreaming of or planning trips to Greece, the two-book ‘Packing for Greece’ series takes readers to sixteen iconic locations: Athens, Delphi and Meteora on the Greek mainland; Monemvasia, Sparta, Nafplio, Mycenae, Epidavros and Methana on the Peloponnese Peninsula; and the islands of Santorini, Rhodes, Hydra, Aegina, Poros, Kefalonia and Corfu (with a side trip to Butrint, an Albanian heritage site with strong links to ancient Greek mythology).

The series has received acclaim in Greece and amongst the Greece-focused literary community. Greek government website Greek News Agenda selected the first book, Unpacking for Greece, as a ‘Reading Greece Book of the Month’, while American author Jeffrey Siger – creator of the enormously popular ‘Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis Mystery’ series – says of Smith, “Fans of legendary UK travel-writer and explorer of all things Greece and beyond, Patrick Leigh Fermor, will find a kindred spirit.”

Bestselling novelist and award-winning journalist Richard Clark has added his endorsement: “In this sparkling sequel to Unpacking for Greece, Sally Jane Smith embarks on another unexpected Odyssey to the country, this time carrying less baggage. Travelling solo, she leaves her anxieties behind and manages to find joy through the healing power of a land she has grown to love. An engaging companion, Sally’s life-affirming book reminds us all to seize the moment.”

Smith has lived on five continents and visited thirty-three countries, but she gives credit to Greece for turning her into a writer. She completed a residency at Varuna, the Writers’ House in the Blue Mountains in 2018 and has published articles in Gulf News, JourneyWoman, TripFiction, Women’s Ink! and Brevity Blog. Smith’s exploration of travel and grief is included in the Newcastle Short Story Award Anthology 2022. Excerpts from her ‘Packing for Greece’ series have won First Place Non-Fiction in the Port Writers Open Literary Competition and been shortlisted in the National Writing Competition organised by the Society of Women Writers NSW.

About the Author

Sally Jane Smith Author of Packing for Greece Series

Sally is a clumsy, out-of-shape, middle-aged woman on a budget.
She’s also mired in anxiety, but she’s not going to let that stop her.
Now she’s braving her fears to seek the passion for travel she lost in her thirties,
and to bring you the info you need to travel Greece by book.

Sally Jane Smith has lived on five continents and visited thirty-three countries, but she gives credit to Greece for turning her into a writer. She has worked in museums, universities, a language institute, a residence for people with disabilities, an art gallery, a primary school and a wildlife park. She also co-hosts two book clubs and assists the organisers of a biennial book-themed convention. She is currently based in Australia.

In 2006, the bus on which she was travelling through Sri Lanka suffered a head-on collision, breaking both her body and her spirit. A decade on, she journeyed to Greece in a quest to recover her wanderlust – and proved it is possible for an out-of-shape, middle-aged woman on a budget, equipped only with a guidebook and her mother’s 1978 travel diary, to experience a life-changing adventure. This is the story that became the ‘Packing for Greece’ series.

Sally is the author of Unpacking for Greece (June 2023) and Repacking for Greece (April 2024).


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