Writing First Sentences

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To help overcome writer’s block and make a start on writing the first sentences of A Moveable Feast, Ernest Hemingway is said to have reminded himself: “Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.” Continue ReadingWriting First Sentences

Cloudstreet by Tim Winton – Omen or Inspiration?

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In May of 1992, the local literary news in Australia was all about Tim Winton and his novel, Cloudstreet. I thought it an omen. Winton was thirty-one-years old and I was thirty. He’d grown up in Western Australia and so had I. He’d just won his second Miles Franklin Award and I was about to have a second crack at being a writer!  Continue ReadingCloudstreet by Tim Winton – Omen or Inspiration?

Mona Lisa Smile

A faded photo of my dad from the 1970s inspired this microfiction. He had a faraway look in his eyes and a Mona Lisa smile on his much younger face. As art lovers have done for centuries with Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, I wondered what was on my dad’s mind when the photo was taken? Continue ReadingMona Lisa Smile

Large Print Editions

After watching the movie versions of Their Finest by Lissa Evans and The Zookeeper’s Wife by Diane Ackerman, I was pleased to track down the books in my local library. The librarian, however, quizzed me with an arched eyebrow, “They are large print editions, is that okay?” Continue ReadingLarge Print Editions

We Need to Talk (Microfiction)

To celebrate the introduction of 280-character Tweets by Twitter, Meanjin Quarterly ran a microfiction competition. The “@Meanjin Twiction” rules were simple, tweet a 280-character story and include the hashtag #meanjin280! The prize? The top ten stories to be published on the Meanjin Blog the following week and the authors paid $1 a word.  Continue ReadingWe Need to Talk (Microfiction)

Their Finest by Lissa Evans

It was a warm, lazy afternoon at home last Sunday and I took advantage of it to sprawl on my sofa and finish reading Their Finest by Lissa Evans (originally published as Their Finest Hour and a Half). 

I started reading the book after seeing the film, also titled Their Finest, a British period comedy-drama about the making of a propaganda film and life on the home front under The Blitz during the Second World War.   Continue ReadingTheir Finest by Lissa Evans

Nevil Shute by Richard Thorn

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I commented on Facebook recently (5th September 2017) that with all the bleak news on North Korea and brinksmanship by Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un, I thought I’d dust off and re-read my old second-hand bookshop copy of Nevil Shute’s On the Beach … to prepare for the worst, just in case! Continue ReadingNevil Shute by Richard Thorn