Interview with Bill Wilkie, author of The Daintree Blockade

Last week I reviewed The Daintree Blockade: The Battle for Australia's Tropical Rainforests. This week Bill Wilkie, the author of that excellent book, kindly took the time to answer some questions for me. He's also generously made a special offer to readers of this blog, Adventures in Biography. Details at the bottom of this post... Bill grew up in Brisbane and studied sociology and Australian history at the University of Queensland. He has lived in London, Dublin and Sydney, and travelled throughout Europe, Asia and South America. Bill now lives in [...]

2018-03-25T12:05:51+11:00July 7th, 2017|Author Interviews, Writing|6 Comments

Death by Dim Sim

Stopped by Readings Books in Carlton today to pick up a copy of my friend's newly released memoir: Death by Dim Sim. So exciting to see it on the shelf. You should buy a copy too. Here's the blurb from the back cover. Sarah Vincent once tipped the scales at 122 kilos. She worked at the back of a hospital making calls and answering emails, but at three o'clock every afternoon she would answer a very special call - the call of the dim sim. Running the gauntlet of [...]

2018-03-25T01:19:20+11:00March 2nd, 2017|Book Review|5 Comments

Does an emerging writer need an agent?

Well of course I'm going to say yes, because I HAVE AN AGENT!!!! Just signed a contract with Jacinta di Mase Management. Cue the happy, happy dance. And yes, signing with Jacinta was a direct result of my participation in the HardCopy program last year.  Jacinta represents over 50 authors including feminist commentator Clementine Ford, journalists Zoe Daniel and Angela Pippos, and historian and Stella Prize winner Clare Wright.  No pressure then. But actually, whether or not to go with a literary agent is something I've been thinking about for [...]

2018-03-27T19:36:17+11:00April 6th, 2016|Writing|0 Comments

How to get your writing read by a publisher (or seven)

Some, but not all, of the participants, publishers and agents. Sadly my red 'power boots' are barely visible. Nor are my lucky socks. It’s really easy. All you have to do is spend 2-10 years writing, refining and rewriting your work. Then apply for a place in the ACT Writers Centre’s HARDCOPY Program for emerging writers. Then, if you are among the 30 or so people accepted, find the cash to pay for the course as well as two (and hopefully three) trips to Canberra. Flights and accommodation. [...]

2018-03-28T17:03:54+11:00December 4th, 2015|Work in Progress, Writing|29 Comments

Mary Cunnane – wisdom and advice from Australia’s favourite literary agent

Mary Cunnane. Photo sourced from We were all such literary newbies that the HARDCOPY program co-ordinator had to explain to us who Mary Cunnane was. Only the one of the best-known agents in Australia.  Only the woman to whom all doors in publishing were open. Only the founder of the Australian Literary Agents Association. Oh, you mean THAT Mary Cunnane.  Right. Mary led the final session of the HARDCOPY workshop, which was essentially an open discussion.  We would ask questions and she would answer them.  And she [...]

2018-03-21T14:55:35+11:00September 25th, 2015|Writing|19 Comments

HARDCOPY – What do publishers want?

HardCopy Alumni 2015 The HARDCOPY program opened on Friday morning with lots of energy. Charlotte Harper, Founder and Editor of Editia, was engaging and full of useful information. What does Editia want? Connection with the author An author with a good social media profile Clear, well edited writing Newsworthiness/timeliness Usefulness, entertainment or educational value Humour and empathy Stories that delve more deeply, solve a mystery or challenge our thinking Needs to make money, with at least a possibility of being onsold to the US or UK, perhaps film [...]

2018-03-21T14:55:35+11:00September 16th, 2015|Writing|0 Comments

How to be an author

During the first of the HARDCOPY workshops we studied how to write well.  The second workshop, though, is all about how to be an author. It is not at all the same thing. With a day still to go, my head is swimming with information.  In the days and weeks to come I will try to distil it and present the key messages from each session.  But for now, some key messages in rough note form. When choosing a publisher - will my book help the publisher to achieve their [...]

2018-03-21T14:55:36+11:00September 12th, 2015|Writing|0 Comments

HARDCOPY Reading List

Next week is the second part of the ACT Writers Centre HARDCOPY program.  It is set up as a series of seminars and panel sessions over three days, like a mini writer's festival, just for us lucky participants. The sessions will focus on the publishing industry: What do publishers want? The role of an agent.  Copyright and contracts. What I wish I knew before I was published.  Let's get digital.  Telling your story with social media.  Reviews - the state of play.  Overcoming stage fright.  Publishing in a digital environment.  [...]

2018-03-21T14:55:36+11:00September 2nd, 2015|Writing|0 Comments

HARDCOPY Round 1 – Phew!

What an amazing long weekend.  Three jam-packed days in the company of like-minded non-fiction writers.  Bliss.  But in any group of two dozen or so there's usually one, isn't there?  One who disrupts, or is overbearing, or who just somehow really gets on your goat? Not in this group. Everyone was thoughtful, respectful and open to learning more about their craft and themselves.  Every single person had a fascinating story that they wanted to tell, and they were willing to work hard - and to learn hard - in order [...]

2018-03-21T14:55:37+11:00June 1st, 2015|Writing|33 Comments

HARDCOPY Professional Development Program – the preparation

The flights and accommodation are booked.  Several work meetings and dinner with a colleague are all lined up.  The suitcase is out of the shed and waiting to be filled with too many shoes.  I always pack too many shoes but how can I possibly know in advance which ones I'll need...? The HARDCOPY program organisers have asked each participant to bring 5 copies of the first 5 pages of our manuscript.  Hmmmm. The first 5 pages of my manuscript have been in existence for so long that they have [...]

2018-03-21T14:55:37+11:00May 27th, 2015|Writing|9 Comments
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