Library Talks 2018-08-30T03:48:45+00:00

Paper research in the digital era

Loving both libraries and writing since she was a child, Louisa has created a 60 minute talk (can also be a workshop) on the library research that went into writing A Letter From Paris. 

Her deeply-personal family memoir involved accessing hundreds of library archives and blending old-fashioned research methods with the digital opportunities of the present-day, to put together her late father’s life.

This talk can be presented at any library or writer’s centre across Australia.

A Letter From Paris has been chosen as a top pick for libraries across Australia by Readings Booksellers

When Louisa Deasey first found her late father’s manuscripts had been preserved at the State Library Victoria, the size of the material was overwhelming. The inventory to the material alone, was 44 pages.

The material then expanded to thousands of letters held in ten libraries across the world, dozens of handwritten diaries, dozens of published and out-of-print books, and numerous unmarked photographs. Over the course of a year, Louisa worked through an enormous amount physical and digital library material, to put together the story which then became A Letter From Paris.


Contents of one of hundreds of handwritten manuscripts held at State Library Victoria used to write A Letter From Paris

Breaking down the research that went into a chapter of A Letter From Paris and discussing the tools she used to meld digital and physical records to put the details together for a story that was far-from-straightforward, this workshop highlights the benefits of public libraries and the preservation of both digital and physical reference material, and will prove useful for librarians, family historians, readers, writers and researchers alike.

Louisa in 2017 outside the Villa in the south of France where poet and author Richard Aldington once lived. Finding the Villa involved melding physical manuscripts & old-fashioned research tools with the opportunities of the digital age.

Who’s it for?

This talk is for anyone who holds a library card, who wants to know how to better utilise the material at public libraries across Australia. Whether you’re looking into your family tree, or sniffing out specific information for a small or large research project, Louisa’s story of blending the best of the digital era with the treasures preserved in handwritten archives, is sure to inspire.


About Louisa
A journalist, copywriter, editor and author with over twenty years experience in Australian media, Louisa has lectured on freelance journalism at RMIT and worked for commercial and public radio in Australia including Mix FM and the ABC.

Contact Louisa to check availability for her workshop: Paper research in the digital era