‘But does Winnie actually want a husband and children, or is she happily single?’ my mentor Brooke asked as we discussed my book, Letting Go. ‘What does she want from life?’ ‘Ahhhhh,’ was my rather inarticulate response. I didn’t know. It suited my purposes for this particular character to be childless, but I hadn’t considered … Continue reading Writing Character Arcs (or Falling in Love with your Characters)
An addiction to flashbacks may sound like I misspent my youth, but in reality I have discovered an over-reliance on a literary technique that threatens to turn my book into a time-hopping debacle.
What embarrassing secrets have I got hidden in my 'rejection file'? Why writers should keep records of their submissions | Shannon Meyerkort
"So my decision to write a book about the pandemic might be seen as a very unpopular one. Especially since it’s been only six months since the first mention of a novel corona virus and we haven’t yet reached the peak."
When I’m immersed in writing a book, I tend to utilise the wee, dark hours when there’s little chance of being disturbed or taken out of the world I am creating. I may change screens to research a quick fact, or display images that evoke a mood or scene I am writing, but I try … Continue reading Writing the Time of COVID-19
I admit this isn’t an original idea, but it’s a very good idea. First someone decided to rewrite the first lines of ten classic novels for social distancing. I’m taking the liberty of rewriting the opening lines from 25 of my favourite Australian novels for the Time of COVID-19. Apologies to all concerned. Invisible … Continue reading The First Lines of Australian Novels Rewritten for COVID-19
‘I could see her looking at me, as she readied herself to tell me about my overuse of weasel words in the nicest possible way. I felt my face tighten as I braced myself for the impact of her words.’ Or ‘She looked at me, ready to tell me about my overuse of weasel words. … Continue reading Weasel Words and Tips for Writers
Lessons in how to pitch your book and get more author speaking engagements.
In January 2020 writers got together to raise over half a million dollars to support the bushfire appeals, and I made some new friends.
A million years ago (back at the turn of the century) when I was working as a research assistant at the University of New South Wales, one of my jobs was to write up the project findings into reports. I was sent with a tape recorder and notebook up the road to the Sydney Children’s … Continue reading Hearing the Voice of the Writer