never ever give up writing

Never ever give up

I went to a children's book conference last week, CYA in Brisbane. FYI I completely recommend attending conferences like CYA, KidLitVic or SCBWI if you are an aspiring writer, or an emerging writer. You spend a day hanging out with people in your field. Making...

Creating Unique and Memorable Characters

I have just finished reading the fifth Kate DiCamillo book I have on my shelf. Each one of her books is more satisfying than the last. Kate weaves such original, compelling stories. But I have been thinking to myself, why do I love these books so...

Compost and how to end a story

I have been doing some school workshops lately, through the StoryBoard program and Byron Writers Festival. I love this work, more than I can say. To be surrounded by kids burning to create...

Writing is a Communal Act

I recently finished Natalie Goldberg's Writing Down The Bones, and really, I could quote every chapter. But I am going to start here, at chapter "Writing Is A Communal Act". Several friends and students have said to me that they avoid reading other books, when they are...

What Nadal Can Teach Us About Writing

My husband Gregor and I have lots of mutual interests. One of them is Rafael Nadal. Our love for Nadal is deep and enduring. His sportsmanship. The deep wrinkles around his eyes when he smiles. His mousey features. His modest acceptance speeches. His fire and...

permission to write

Give yourself permission to write

It's Good Friday. We are faffing around the house. Folding laundry. Painting wooden eggs. Washing up. Putting away. Washing the car. The to-do list is endless. At some point, I might sit down to write, and my husband will start on his new painting. But...

fit writing into your life

Fit Writing Into Your Life

I met friends for coffee the other day, and we got chatting about how we weave creativity into our lives. 'How do you do it?' they asked. 'How do you write books, and raise kids? Life feels so overwhelming sometimes.' My answer? Well, I just do it....

writing alone

The Myth of the Lonesome Writer

When you close your eyes, and imagine a writer, what do you see? A person hunched over their desk, candlelight flickering? Is tapping of the typewriter or the scritch scratch on paper the only sound in the room? Historically, or archetypically, maybe, the writer is imagined...