lee child andy martin

What I Learnt From Lee Child

The other night, children’s author Tristan Bancks interviewed Andy Martin about his new book Reacher Said Nothing: Lee Child and the Making of Make Me. Andy documented Lee Child from 1st September, and the blank page, to the final word in Child’s Jack Reacher novel,...

The Writing Rehearsal

The other day, I spoke to a whole bunch of Grade 7/8. It was a big ask, keeping 13 and 14 year old’s amused for a full hour. Just before the talk, I had the random insight to show a video of David Mackintosh rehearsing...

On Being Adventurous

One of my earliest memories is waking at sunrise, and taking Sammy, our black Belgian shepherd, for a meander. The sun glowed behind us and through my thin cotton nighty, as I walked down our long gravel driveway, towards the highway. I’m not sure exactly what...

novel writing

A million ways to write a novel

There’s a hashtag happening online this month, #writeabookwithal. Australian children’s author and all round excellent person, Allison Tait is helping people meet their writing goals and push through the pain barrier to push out a novel (or part of) in a month. Last month, I sort...

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...