Before I began writing myself, I read novels primarily for the story. In fact, I revelled in the tale. Even after dissecting themes for my studies in ‘great’ literature, I still craved a good story. Later, while studying creative writing, I heard another student declare that she only reads these days to see how the … Continue reading Reading for Writers
At the launch of Every Second Tuesday, author Lee Kofman observed that certain of the Elwood Writers stories in the anthology exhibited a ‘fascinating’ interface between memoir and fiction. This reflects, I believe, a growing field of writers who are mixing the two genres. Blending them, however, can be a challenge. Debate rages about where … Continue reading The Interface between Memoir and Fiction
During our Melbourne lockdown, 2020, we were each allocated one hour of exercise per day. I drove to the local car park, which overlooks an oval surrounded by trees, and beyond that, a river. There I would just sit before my walk. This was a most splendid moment for me. It was winter, so I … Continue reading The Car Park
As part of Elwood Writers online anthology launch, host Lee Kofman had prepared a question for me on the ethics of writing about one's family. ‘Margaret, your memoirs in this collection feature various family members. What are your main ethical challenges when you write about others and how do you deal with them?’ The launch … Continue reading Ethics in Memoir
More on Elwood Writers launch 9 December:: here’s news on one of my stories that features in the anthology.
In 2018, Tim McQueen from Vision Australia Radio commissioned Elwood Writers to create a series of pieces win celebration of the centenary of Armistice Day. They were to be read on his program Cover to Cover.
I scratched my head for a story.
‘I’ve got nothing to write,’ I told my partner. ‘I don’t know anything about World War I.’
‘Yes, you do,’ Tom replied. ‘Your two grandfathers were in that war, and your great uncle.’
To my surprise, I was reminded that my maternal grandfather, Dr John O’Brien, had been an army surgeon at Australia’s ill-fated campaign in Gallipoli. To me as a child his post-war life looked so prosperous and comfortable, I couldn’t imagine him ever having been at what became a godforsaken strip of Turkish beach.
With much research and a stretch of the imagination, I wrote ‘Down to the Sea’ as a mixture of fiction…
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I have always loved America. The United States of America, that is. From the moment Huck Finn sailed down the Mississippi with the runaway slave, Jim, I was sold. I loved the English classics, but for me American novelists like Mark Twain and F. Scott Fitzgerald drove the story forward. Their novels – the one … Continue reading America
As promised! Elwood Writers' anthology Every Second Tuesday is about to hit the shelves, and we'd love you to join us online as Lee Kofman launches the book with Readings on Wednesday 9 December at 6:30pm (AEST). This is a free event, though booking is required in order to receive the meeting link on the … Continue reading An Invitation to the Launch
Troglodyte that I am, I’ve resisted the idea of an online launch for the new anthology Every Second Tuesday from Elwood Writers https://elwoodwriters.com (EW). In fact, I’ve resisted FaceTime ‘anything’ for that matter. When it comes to books and launches, I assumed I'd miss the buzz of a real launch, as when EW member Jennifer Bryce … Continue reading The Online Launch
Bob Dylan’s house in Malibu is sure to be gorgeous. Apparently it looks over the sea. But when a reporter asked him where he composes, he replied, ‘In a hotel room.’ Tom Wolfe (The Bonfire of the Vanities) was rumoured to have locked himself in a hotel at his editor’s insistence to finish The Kandy-Kolored-Flake Streamline … Continue reading Going Away to Write
‘But Margaret, you seem so nice,’ a writing colleague said to me. ‘How do you come up with this stuff? Where does it come from?’ I shrugged. First of all, I’m not that nice. Secondly, being a writer is different to being a human being. The human is there to get along in the world, … Continue reading Writing Bad