HELLO 2018

I'm having some trouble with my website here. A wonderful wonderful designer is doing things with it to make it better but I managed to muck it up a bit by fiddling. So bear with me/us as I/we get it how I want it.   But for now. A list: I am reading Bruce Pascoe's [...]

What I’ve been reading, what I stopped reading, what I want to be reading

But first, congratulations to Sofie Laguna for her Miles Franklin win, for THE EYE OF THE SHEEP. You can read more about that here at Allen & Unwin's website. I found out that Sofie had no idea she was going to win, in fact had been told not to expect a win, so what a triumph, and [...]

Saturday links

Melbourne's evening skies at the moment are so gorgeous. I think that what are lot of us are doing with the internet, with twitter, blogs etc, is curating. We are collecting links to articles of interest, stories, pictures, as well as trying to collect people of like mind, making connections with people. It really is a [...]

Well, hello 2015

It's a massive understatement to say I'm looking forward to 2015, but I am because: 1. Something is happening with my book and I'll be able share I hope soon. It's coming, I promise. I PROMISE. 2. but not too soonish because I'm going travelling in a couple of weeks, and it looks something like this: London, Budapest, [...]

Bits & pieces

READING At the moment I have a lot of books partially read, and plenty unread, but that doesn't stop me bringing more into the house. I bought Wild Things by Brigid Delaney earlier this week, one of those 'how has she done this?' purchases, as well as Jennifer Egan's A Visit From the Goon Squad [...]

Going Global, ASA Seminar held Wed 14 May, Melbourne

Anne Beilby, Rights Manager at Text Publishing.I went along to this not quite sure what it was about (my fault, no one else's.) But I knew two things:1. Anne Beilby from Text Publishing was the speaker and 2. she is a guru when it comes to all things to do with publishing rights.Actually I knew [...]

Back into it

Am back from the beach and into the writing. Have a bit of urgency about it and today was stressful. I hate Word. I don't know how to drive it properly, with formatting and the editing feature, and I don't have time to work it out so I have to do it in a really [...]


I've got a problem. You're going to think I'm crazy but let me explain. My agent has read and loved my second novel manuscript. This is great, really good. I'm waiting for her editorial notes and I'll do another revision and then she'll send it to the publishers, the same ones who saw the first [...]

Messages from 2004 – no one is taking a punt any more

I have several large ring binder folders that are stuffed with clipped newspaper articles, book reviews, my handwritten notes from courses and other printed material, mainly pieces on writing that I've found online. Sometimes when my mind is too buzzy to settle on fiction when I'm in bed at night, before sleeping, I pull out [...]

Tracing influence

It's almost the end of the year but I've still got stuff to do. Teaching finishes this week — my final session is Thursday. But there's writing, always writing. I'm not complaining. It is the thing I most love to do and I feel really lucky to be able to do it, not just as [...]

Monday musings

Here are some things I've come across in my internet wanderings this morning: 1. A wonderful piece on Hilary Mantel. It's from last year but it gives you a lot of info about her as a person and a writer. Lots of bits in it resonate for me, but when she's talking about taking a [...]

During the whilst

Over the next few days I'm really busy but was conscious I hadn't posted here for a week. So in the meantime, until I can get something else up, here are some snippets to keep you going. 1. I've just been browsing through Virginia Lloyd's website. Again. Yeah yeah, I know she's my agent but [...]

A good week

Last week was a good one. On Tuesday I heard that a piece I submitted to Kill Your Darlings journal had been accepted. It's about a trip to Lake Eyre I made in 1989, and it's also about the sour-end of a one-way crush, flowing in the direction of me to him. Oh, unrequited crushing. [...]


My mother loves Dickens's works, and loves to read about his life. This morning on twitter among a conversational back-and-forth on Dickens, there was a link to an article about Dickens and his children. From the London Review of Books How Does he Come to Be Mine? by Tim Parks, which is a review of [...]


I am back from hols and happy to be home. I do love Melbs, even though it's chilly and grey. This week I have to hit the ground running; teaching three gigs, getting a thing cut out of my back on Friday and then a mighty Tour de France dinner with my sister and her [...]

During the whilst

While looking for pictures to use in the review section, I found this:Annotations on Hemingway's A Moveable Feast which contain page references, links to youtube clips, photos and extra quotations.It's quite simply extraordinary.I know Ernest Hemingway is passé and a lot of people bag him and/or his writing but if anyone wanted a taster, A [...]

So my dear ones

I was going to write my first review on Jill Stark's High Sobriety. No, it's not a novel, yes it's like a memoir of a year without alcohol. But it was so important, I lent it to a friend this morning to read. So, I'm thinking The Great Gatsby will be my first review. Why [...]

This is good

6 Rules of Thumb (from an editor-turned-writer) This one too: 7 Interesting Links for Writers Funny how we are attracted to lists and posts that have numbers in them. And I'm not the only one thinking about book reviews. This from Cate Russell-Cole. That's it for today. I'm off to make pumpkin soup.

I’m back

Back from my quick LA/NYC trip. Six flights in 7 days with two long-haul, two 5-hours and two one-hours. Travelling with the Qantas crew was fascinating and about half way through I started taking copious notes. I learned a lot being in the crew bus with them from airports to hotels, during the milling around [...]

Edited – Not about Building web traffic and all that jazz

EDITED - I couldn't find that post again on building blog traffic. I'll keep trying but in the meantime, here is another link from Jane's site. I have to say, it's one of the most comprehensive 'writer support' sites I've seen. You could spend days trawling through the material. Below is a link to some [...]

Now with blogroll

I've copied across many of my writerly links from my personal blog so that I can have them stored here because this is the space I'm shaping into the writing thing, the other blog is just personal blah blah stuff. There are a lot of helpful links to the left-hand side (in terms of writing [...]

Who are you?

I was looking at the CAL website today and almost joined but then thought I should wait and get some advice about it. But I got up to the 'select your title' bit. It is a drop-down menu and I don't think I've ever seen so many choices. I so desperately want to be a [...]

GIRLS update

Sorry I am a bit obsessed at the moment. It seems the most recent episode of GIRLS has got people in lathers all over the world. The problem seems to be this: how could someone who looks like this: possibly seduce and spend two days with someone who looks like this: There's all sorts of [...]

Life of Pi

Quite an extraordinary movie even if only for the visuals (especially the realism of the tiger; how he swam accurately, how his facial expressions shifted, how his eye colour changed as he became deteriorated — his coat thinning, nose drying out and becoming pink and his form becoming emaciated). It made me want to re-read the book, to [...]

Helen Garner’s True Stories

I am re-reading True Stories, a collection of essays and other non-fiction snippets written by Helen Garner. It contains an essay titled A Scrapbook, An Album which I read first in another collection, called Sisters, edited by Drusilla Modjeska and published in 1993. I have my mother's inscription on the inside: To Dearest Jen, Much Love Mum, [...]

Flawed memories

Sometimes, as a person who likes to write things, I collect stories and end up telling it to others and in the telling, I make it better than the original. The thing is, I'm not lying; what's happened is I've misremembered the details and then filled in with other bits. Sometimes this includes the conflation [...]

Our Quentin

I am really excited about Tarantino's next movie, Django. Partly, because it's Tarantino, partly because it's got Di Caprio in it. I had a big response to Inglourious Basterds, (feel uncomfortable saying I loved it because it was so chilling in parts) and wrote a long post about it on my WOS blog. This is [...]

Christmas Eve

I've spent the day thus far cleaning. All is done so I can relax now and make potato salad and rice salad and start drinking champagne around 5pm. I was vaccuming the rug beside my bed (I should say our bed, shouldn't I?) and it has two medallions and floral motifs and is a gorgeous [...]

What’s in a name?

Bought Middlemarch today at Readings for my 16-year-old daughter for Christmas. She's quite the precocious reader. In addition to ALL the vampiric books she's read: The Russians - she's reading Anna Karenina now and has read Lolita. The English - Pride and Prejudice, Emma, Persuasion, Sense and Sensibility and Northanger Abbey. She's read Great Expectations [...]

Day of achievements

In the morning, read the papers. The worked on four short stories getting them ready to send off into the world. Then, this afternoon, cleaned all the windows and even the brickwork of the house with a pressure-hose-thingy. I have never lived in such a cobwebby house but it's sparkling now. Quickly gave the roses [...]