October 31, 2019

One year ago today, on 1 November 2018, my first novel came out. Nothing much happened on the actual day but, symbolically, it was momentous: my first published novel after years of accumulating a drawer full of manuscripts that just didn’t fly.

It’s been an interesting...

September 18, 2019

During the opening session of this year’s EWF National Writers Conference, Toni Jordan, as part of delivering her top tips for emerging writers, demonstrated an exercise she does at her desk to loosen up her back. As writers, it’s very important, she said, to look afte...

July 14, 2019

I LOVE getting feedback about my work. It’s one of two of my favourite parts of the writing process (the other is the rush of getting a BRILLIANT idea and turning it over in my mind). Working with an editor is blissful, and when it’s my month to have my material worksh...

May 29, 2019

The more manuscripts I write (I’m up to my seventh), the more I refine my process. Not that it’s a planned thing. The process is dictated by the way my mind works. I don’t try to structure it anymore. I let it come out the way it wants to.

I imagine it’s the same for ev...

April 12, 2019

Last week I was lucky enough to participate in an event at a local bookshop called Brunswick Bound. The event was First Chapters – it’s run on the first Friday of every month and features authors reading for 5–7 minutes from their latest work and then taking part in a...

March 12, 2019

I often get overwhelmed by the number of things I need/want to do each week. There’s paid editing work, novel writing, family stuff, exercise, household chores, keeping my garden alive (we’ve had a few heat spells in Melbourne recently), driving my son around (my daugh...

February 4, 2019

I’m one of those writers who reckons you can’t write the first sentence of a novel until you know the last. The first line, I think, should say something (on some level) about what’s to come. I have to know where a story’s headed before my fingers hit the keyboard. Aft...

January 6, 2019

I woke up this morning thinking,** as I often do, that I must get back to work on my current manuscript-in-progress. It’s been far too long between sessions. In my defence (aka: the current excuse), my head has been struck in This Thing of Darkness: its release in Nove...

August 8, 2018

I used to be quite involved with the Emerging Writers’ Festival in Melbourne. At the time, a lot of our audience tended to be younger people (under 30) but that demographic has slowly crept up over the years. We always said that ‘emerging’ does not equate to ‘young’ (t...

June 27, 2018

Last month I wrote about the benefits and challenges that I’ve found in being part of a writing critique group. Today I’m going to look at some of the more practical aspects.

Are you in the right group?

I guess you’re not going to know if the group is right for you until...