I don’t know where to begin… (or, a day in the life of a Children’s Publishing Consultant)

March 16, 2017

Categories: editing, writing

Retro Vintage We are Open Typographical background, Vector design

In the words of Icehouse, or later from Missy Higgins, I don’t know where to begin, but this is all that I know… (more…)


Too Much Information

February 19, 2015

Categories: writing

Author photos on jackets, or not? This has been an ongoing discussion for a while among my friends – readers and writers alike… (more…)

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The ‘what am I writing’ blog

June 23, 2014

Categories: Carole Wilkinson, stories, writing

Carole Wilkinson has passed me the baton for the ‘so what are YOU writing blog’ and now I’m feeling anxious. This is what I came up with.

I’m writing illustrator briefs. Proposal pitches. I’m writing emails to friends, responses to mss and texts to my family. I am writing tags on all my new study boxes. I am writing essays. Writing lists so as not to forget. (more…)


Obe One – you’re my only hope…

October 19, 2010

Categories: school, Star Wars, writing

I’m sending my message out there.
I’m looking for a line of text that will inspire me for my next book.
I spent two hours in the car coming home from the country
trying to find the voice for my next character.
I didn’t talk, just kept trolling through a list of people
who didn’t quite do it for me.
So now I resort to you, dear reader.
In the same way the my teacher would write a line of text
on the board and say, ‘start writing’
I am looking for a line of text.
The person who writes the line I choose will receive a free copy of Six.

You’re my only hope.


A message to Literary Life

October 17, 2010

Categories: writing

I read Megan’s blog recently – re her sister excited to have finished her 4,000 word essay, while Megan could brag 10,000 words of fiction (or was that more – and by the way congrats). The thing is, it’s all about the angst. Sometimes 10,000 is a breeze and sometimes writing a birthday card is agony. “if I say this, do they think I mean that?”

I’m not saying that 4,000 words of essay is worth 10,000 words of fiction.
It’s just that life isn’t about the number of words, or Pulitzer prizes or accolades from your peers.
Were these the best 4,000/10,000 words you could do?
Then well done you.

(I will now spend the next 10 hours checking the nuances of this blog.)

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Hail Middleaged Frumpiness

May 24, 2009

Categories: eavesdropping, middle age, writing

There is something to be said for anonymity of middle-aged frumpiness. You are totally invisible to the world and can enjoy the best eavesdropping opportunities while fading into the wallpaper. Last week at breakfast, armed with a magazine and flat white, I caught the conversation from the table 5cm away. (Those inner city places love to pack em in.) A word of warning. If you are going to eat breakfast in public and declare that someone is dumb, it will probably reflect back off those groovy mirrored walls that adorn the very groovy eatery you have chosen to breakfast at and hit you right in the face. I sided with every person subsequently slagged off and was left to consider the idiosyncratic nature of someone who will only drink Pepsi in a crystal glass every hour on the hour — a story I did not hear the end of. Which reminds me of another conversation that I didn’t hear the end of. I went home and finished that conversation by writing a short story which subsequently became a 14 book series. There is something to be said for listening in…(and not getting caught).

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If only life were like Scrivener…

November 16, 2008

Categories: Chris Miles, Lili Wilkinson, Scrivener, writing

For anyone who hasn’t used the software program Scrivener, it’s a little like the amazing gadget in the Adam Sandler film Click. When Adam couldn’t be bothered sitting through a family dinner because he wanted to get on with his project, he just forwarded through the event to where he wanted to be. In the same way, Scrivener allows the writer to jump from one scene to another, while keeping the two scenes completely separate. My first fumblings at writing were short stories and I relied on my memory if I had an idea about a character or the plot line. Years down the track, and some longer stories later (and the filing system in the memory banks now full of useful information like all the words for American Pie, how to make a health cake with five ingredients, and the postcode for every suburb I have ever worked in), saw me making notes at the end of a MS word document as ideas interrupted my story flow. After recommendations from some fellow writers (Lili Wilkinson and Chris Miles take a bow) I finally took the plunge and looked at the Scrivener software. Am a babe in the woods at present, but I’m already liking the corkboard and scene cards that can be colour-coded, additional notes added to, images added to etc. Kind of like the Click machine, but using it for good instead of evil…

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