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Category Archives: On Writing


‘You’re the least important person in the room’: Memoir and Bad Behaviour

Being fourteen is difficult enough; being trapped in an isolated cabin with other girls all experiencing similar feelings of loneliness, fear, and uncertainty makes for a volatile situation. Who wants to remember being a fourteen-year-old – especially one who carried around so much shame and fear? Read more »

What Australian Literary Conversation?

I am concerned about the absence of a performative aspect of criticism in the public domain, which doesn’t necessarily assume specialised knowledge or recognised allegiances, but is prepared to discuss what criticism is. Read more »

Cate Kennedy on motherhood and creativity

In this extract from Rachel Power’s new book, Motherhood & Creativity: The Divided Heart, she speaks with author Cate Kennedy about her love for her daughter and her writing. Read more »

Spark, flow, sigh: The erotics of body and mind

Recently, as we sat around having a few drinks after a book launch, a poet friend asked the question, ‘Do you find writing to be an erotic act?’. My instinctive answer was ‘yes’, but I’ve been thinking about it ever since. How did I interpret the question? And why was my answer so sure? Read more »

The Art of Influence: On writing The Flywheel

My book for young adults, The Flywheel, was published last month. It is the first book I’ve published, and it took me a fair amount of time spent alone in a quiet room to write. Read more »

A Murky Business: On being a writer

At what point does writing become a job? Because of the immeasurable and subjective nature of writing – of being a writer – the goal posts are forever shifting. Read more »

Kindness and Failure: The journey of writing Heat and Light

To see Heat and Light as the end product of four failed novels would be irrelevant and inexact. For me, as for many other writers, ‘failure’ and the kindness of others are big factors in the growth of my writing. Read more »

In defence of creative writing courses

Creative writing courses have been routinely criticised by writers, ex-teachers, former students and literary critics since they became ‘an established fact’. If the value in creative writing courses is not measured by obvious markers of success, such as full-time employment, publications or prizes won, where is it to be found? Read more »

On horses, Gillian Mears and Australian fiction

In Australia, horses are the brumbies. They are the stock horses disappearing into clouds of red dust. They are the thoroughbreds kicking dirt up on the pretty frocks and dapper suits at the Melbourne Cup, the warmbloods and Clydesdales and ponies at the various agricultural shows around the country. Read more »

Just a number: The literary world’s obsession with age

I used to be obsessed about what age I would be when I had my first novel published. I’d go on the Wikipedia pages of every famous writer I could think of to check how old they were when their first book came out. Read more »