Monday, 9 September 2013


Well, I finally feel my writing has made some impact recently with my non-fiction story "Coming Home" being shortlisted for the 2013 Trudy Graham - Julie Lewis Award for Prose.
While my story failed to make the winning post, I'm so happy that it at least made the grade for consideration.
Another milestone to put under my writer's hat; and encouragement to keep on writing.
Well done to all the winners.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Great tips & advice - The Humble Hyphen

As writers we're always looking for advice right?  The Australian writers centre – is great resource for keeping in touch with what courses are available to help with your writing skills, along with heaps of writing tips and advice.

The latest tip offered was about the humble hyphen and how it can play a crucial role in your writing, if you understand how to use it properly. The problem is many writers don’t know how to use them, so here are a few tips offered by the writer's centre to help you on your way.

You use a hyphen when two or more words are joined to form an adjective that appears before a noun or pronoun. For example:

She has a three-year-old son.
This is a well-written book.

If the adjective comes after the noun or pronoun it’s describing, you don’t use the hyphen. So:

Her son is three years old.
This book is well written.

You also use a hyphen if you’re adding a prefix to another word, such as re-enrol, neo-Gothic or ex-girlfriend.

Some style guides suggest a restrained approach to the hyphen and would encourage leaving it out if you’re confident that it won't confuse your reader. 

Saturday, 6 July 2013


As a writer I've found the biggest time waster to be procrastination.  I search the web endlessly to find writers tips on Point of view, beginnings, endings and everything in between.  I'm hooked on writing memoir; creative non-fiction and articles but seem relentless in looking for just one more vital piece of information before I make a start.  I have an abundance of an ever increasing volume of data on how-to's that I really should be an expert on my chosen genre's but non-the-less, here I am re-thinking, delving deep into the world of overload, and to get started on actually writing something of substance still sits idle.  How many books,excerpts and articles must I read before I think I am ready to put my words out there for all to read?
No more researching; I am going to forge ahead with my inner voice and put together a piece of a life pun intended.  I have stories to tell; some funny, some sad, some different, some that will serve as healing, some just because.  I'm on my way! Thank you blog for giving me the strength and courage to write and think more clearly.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Spiritual insight

I love reading Paulo Coelho; he gets those grey cogs thinking outside the normal realm of life as we live it.  He is very spiritual and makes so much sense through the conveying of his spiritual journeys.
Here is an extract I believe all writers should hold close to them when questioning their motive for writing, I hope it provides an insight for you as it did for me.

'Aleph' by Paulo Coelho
'Is it difficult to write?'
'What do you need in order to be able to write?'
'To love...'
'Is that all?'
'You see this park? There are all kinds of stories here, and even though they 've been told many times, they still deserve to be told again.  The writer, the singer, the gardener, the translator, we are all a mirror of our time.  We all pour our love into our work...but anyone who puts all his faith in academic tomes and creative writing courses is missing the point: words are life set down on paper.  So seek out the company of others.'
No one can learn to love by following a manual and no one can learn to write by following a course...because writing is no different from any other activity done with joy and enthusiasm.'

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Building Creative Minds

Imagination! Isn't it a wonderful thing.  If only us adults could harvest our memories and keep our playful imaginations alive as though we were reliving each moment in time all over again, how marvelous would that be.  
Instead we are left questioning 'Did it happen that way, I just can't remember?'
And lets be honest, our imaginations can't compete with that of a child whose innocence and learning of the world around them is always developing.  For us adults, unfortunately the realities of life take place of our imaginations and drive the way we think, speak and act; but for a child their imaginations are bold, thrilling and undiscovered.
If only we knew what we know now, maybe we would have allowed our playful colourful imaginations to make a lasting mark on this world of ours. Well, while we're on the subject of imaginations, let me tell you about my latest discovery - 100 Story Building.  In Melbourne's inner west keen young kids are being given an opportunity of a life time.  Through 100 Story Building project some of the most disadvantaged children who would normally be at risk of lower literacy development are being taught life literacy skills helping towards building self-confidence while also allowing them to gain a sense of belonging.  
In collaboration with some of Australia's best known authors and artists these kids are being shown how to  become our next generation of authors and journalists.  And for us adults, we can also benefit from this wonderful enterprise by participating as volunteers or booking into one of the many workshops offered to help our own writing endeavors.  If it sounds interesting visit, there just might be something there for you.

Friday, 1 February 2013

Writing like a Pro

My title is a little tongue in cheek as one might say.  I have been vigilantly working on one of my many topics for a memior over the past four months, writing, re-writing, editing, cutting, pasting and then re-writing...and so I am so close to finally finishing this piece that I now have 24 hours before the closing date.
What did I do?  Did I make the deadline? Did I submit on time? Did I make the word count, which by the way was an amazing 4000 words max. 
I'm happy to tell you I in fact did make the deadline; after having stayed up unitl 2.00am to ensure it was completed, redrafted and posted on-line the morning of closing.
What then? did I hear you ask?  Well, yes like all professional writers I have edited and re-edited, I read through my work over and over, but at 2.00am I guess my eyes were getting a little fuzzy.
I submitted my work with confidence, a sense of great accomplishment, this was my first deadline for the 2013 and I wrote 3,886 words, I 've made it. Yeah!
And then like all good professional writers, we can't help ourselves can we, we must re-read our work one more time; but this time it's after submission.  And what do I find? Oh, yes you guessed it; a blunder, oh no, not one blunder but two.
I can't believe it of course, I had read this over and over.
So now as a professional writer, I give to you the most precious gift; always read your work before submitting, but don't do it at 2.00am.
My plan now is to re-submit the same re-edited piece elsewhere; better luck next time hey. 
Happy writing everyone!

Thursday, 17 January 2013

For all Rural Women Writers

For anyone interested in entering their non-fiction memior for the 'Elyne Mitchell Writing Competition,' get your pen to paper or fingers to the keyboard. 
Your submission needs only 2500 words or less with entries closing at the end of June 2013. 
Needs a rural theme; visit for further details
 Good Luck!

Over Sixty-Shades of Gray: A Journey Through Life's Later Years

Here is one of the latest titles I've recently had the pleasure to review, I enjoyed this read and highly recommend it to anyone 50+ ...