sparse desert alien landscape night time

Never Again – Flash Fiction

“An adventure into the unknown,” my friends said, “it will be fun”. They lied. I’m not sure why I agreed to it. I had lived all of my 41 years in the safety zone, always colouring inside the lines and never straying too far from my creature comforts of home. The riskiest thing I’d ever done was order my jungle …

neon open sign

It’s Just Common – Flash Fiction

‘Supervisor!’ The officious sounding voice rings out over the incessant dinging of the bell on the counter.  I pop my head over the top of my cubicle, startled to find my colleagues at the shire council office have vanished into thin air.   ‘You there,’ the owner of the voice points at me. Other words follow at breakneck speed but they’re lost on …

wine hearts and wine

You Had Me at… Flash Fiction

The following flash fiction story was shortlisted in the Australian Writers’ Centre’s Furious Fiction contest a little while ago. We were given half a dozen descriptive prompts to include, such as, ‘cold and greasy’. I hope you enjoy it. ‘Sweet and pungent,’ he says with authority before sloshing the wine around his mouth. In fervent concentration, his eyebrows dart around …

This Month’s Writing Tip: Enjoying the “Process”

I recently saw an interview with the cast of a Quentin Tarantino movie with the actors saying they celebrated regularly throughout the whole filmmaking process, and not just at the end. Apparently Tarantino subscribes to the belief that if you are involved in a creative pursuit, you should enjoy all of the process not just the “red carpet” bit at …

How to Really Support Other Writers

It started with a tweet from a high profile author who directed some less than supportive, and ill-informed comments at (aspiring) authors who start marketing themselves before they are published. In another tweet, the author took exception to authors offering writing advice unless they were well established and traditionally published.  I don’t know the reasons behind the author’s comments, she …

collaboration
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How Collaboration Can Make You A Better Writer

I don’t make a secret of the fact that I credit my writing group with making me a better writer. I’ve written and posted a lot about how other writers can provide invaluable critique and encouragement, but what about the idea of collaboration? Can a truly collaborative project make you an even better writer? Can working together on one project …

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The Biggest Thing Standing Between You and Writer Success

Okay, you got me. There are actually many variables that determine whether you succeed as a writer – not just one thing. If there was an exact magic formula there wouldn’t be a need for anyone to blog about this stuff…but…there is, in fact, one critical factor that determines just how good you get as a writer. And that one …

Writing Dialogue True to Each Character’s Voice

Capturing a character’s unique voice is an ongoing challenge but I feel like I’m making real progress with my latest work-in-progress. My main character is a 17-year-old girl and I was once that age so I figure I have a bit of a headstart. To get even further into my character’s head I dusted off diaries I had written as …

With a Little Help From My Friends

Why every aspiring author needs a writing group With everything going on in this crazy world right now, we can all appreciate how important it is to have good friends (albeit virtually) around us. I’ve very fortunate to count among my friends an amazing group of writers who I’d be lost without. Now I’ve been plugging away at this creative …

Why I Have a Rejection Goal and You Need One Too

Saved away in one of the files on my computer is a numbered list of names. There are names of writing competitions and opportunities, publishers and literary agents. Each of the names has notes next to him. Dates of when something was sent or submitted. Some of the text is marked with strikethrough and details of a response received. Some …