PORTFOLIO OF WRITING
235 Winter 2019
With the mast in one hand, I clutch my last Vegemite sandwich in the other as I search for the island. Squinting through warm spray, I see it rise in the distance, beckoning from across the heaving sea. My replica Viking færing will make it – fashioned from the most robust plastics I could find. Still, as I surge forward and my fingers slip and slide, I wish I’d built in a seatbelt. Swallowing the sandwich, I whip my design pad from its bag and shield it from the spray before adding to my section on improvements.
December 12th 2018
When Rory burst into our lives, he was an angry pink and already knew how to complain. I should have smothered him right there, taken a pillow from behind Mum’s matted wet hair, saving us all. And I would have, had she ever left his side. Instead I was forced to endure him, to direct my hatred instead toward the blowflies buzzing inside the window ledge, while she repeated over and over, ‘Isn’t he the most beautiful thing you have ever seen?’
Margaret River Press, 2019
In the latest anthology in the annual Margaret River Short Story Competition, contemporary concerns, such as climate change, cultural inclusiveness and the need for queer spaces, are explored and a spotlight is shone on the complex emotions that we sometimes fail to honour in our daily lives and close relationships.
6th July 2020
Writing is my third career but, when I think about it, I have always been tumbling along this trajectory. The books I read as a child were predominantly mysteries: Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, The Famous Five, anything by Anthony Horowitz. At eleven, I devoured the worlds of Eric Van Lustbader, books I wouldn’t dare let my own children read now. Then in high school, The Collector was placed in my tremoring hands.
9th July 2020
The idea for the Peter Carey Short Story Award began as a passing remark. Our library had asked for help hosting a literary festival, something for locals that would also draw others into the shire. Naturally, our ambitions spread, and we were gonna make it huge. Bring in big-name writers who would cement our little town’s position on the modern literary map. Someone suggested we hold a short story competition for locals.
20th July 2020
A few years ago, as I was tinkering with my first crime fiction manuscript in my favourite café, I received a phone call which shook me. The caller asked if I’d answered my husband’s phone. I explained this was my number and asked who was inquiring, after all, the voice sounded cagey. The man revealed he was a detective senior constable and my heart raced.
20th July 2020
Writing in the time of COVID-19 has its challenges. The world is in tremendous turmoil. Add three kids and a partner at home, in a confined space, who all want your attention all the time, and the solitude needed for writing evaporates. How do we carve out a space where deep thinking can occur when it seems so impossible?
23rd April 2019
When applications for the 2018 Readings/Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowships opened last year, I had just closed another polite rejection reminding me I was an unpublished writer. I had some early success with competition short-listings, but none were recent. I could boast none of the accolades writers who won fellowships and residencies seemed to have. It was longer than a long shot. Still – needing to strengthen my dealing-with-rejection muscles – I prepared my application and hit send.