It was a wonderful evening – packed with ex-patriot Australians, a ‘token pom’ (as Winton described the lone British questioner), and me. He’d come from Australia to Waterstones at Trafalgar Square to speak about his new book, a collection of essays, entitled The Boy Behind the Curtain. The event was compered by Philip Hensher who has… Continue reading Making Himself Up: Tim Winton
Rail trips across Australia’s vast state borders had always held all the elements of narrative for Astley: human beings in a small space forging strange alliances, all with a rueful acceptance of their own banality. In a railway carriage anyone could be “people freak” – Astley’s favourite term for herself – could listen in on… Continue reading Why I Write. Why I Read.
Last week, I went to Waterstones Piccadilly to hear two debut authors speak about their recently published debut novels. Elan Mastai, author of All Our Wrong Todays and Katie Khan, author of Hold Back the Stars were in conversation with the BBC’s Joe Haddow. Both books explore the idea of utopias – with dystopic tendencies… Continue reading Writing the Future
As the Thames path unfurled along the twisting river, so too, I thought, a story would unfurl in my mind, as I soaked up my surroundings. I hadn’t had a writing day in months but had cleared some time and space. Last Monday but one was going to be a good day. The area stretching… Continue reading Rules for Writing
I’ve briefly mentioned Robin Klein on this blog before, but today is her 81st birthday and so I feel she deserves a post of her own. She was the first author I ever wrote to (way back in 1986) and her friendliness and openness made me completely believe that a writing life was possible. There’s… Continue reading Your First Favourite Author
It’s the most brilliant pleasure to discover an affinity with a writer’s work but it’s even sweeter when you dare to harness an affinity with the writer himself. When I was a young, aspiring writer in Australia, the young, accomplished writer whose work I valued most was Matthew Condon. Foremost, I loved the humour and pathos of… Continue reading bookbybook 20: Matthew Condon
Last year, I wrote on here about the importance of the second novel, because I’d heard that the best thing you can do to support the book you’ve written is to produce another one. Critical mass really helps create a presence in readers’ if not retailers’ minds. So, I duly set about starting another novel… Continue reading My New Online Fiction Serial