How some writing starts

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Father 3I have been working on a piece of writing (the same piece I have been struggling to finish for months), which I shall call a ‘fictionalised memoir’. It all came about following a conversation with my eldest daughter, who voiced that she would like me to tell her more of her grandfather (my father), as she had never known him, my dad having died before her birth. I started by jotting down things about his character; talents, hobbies etc., when I stopped writing and began chewing the end of my pen instead. My father was worth more than a few facts; he was a very kind, interesting, hard-working entrepreneurial type, with a cracking sense of humour and a passion for music and art. His friends loved him, as did I. He deserved a story.   Continue reading

A Long Way From Home

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Carey long wayI began the year reading Peter Carey’s latest book A Long Way From Home. That it was advertised as a thrilling high-speed story appealed to me and the fact it was written by a favourite Australian author. It’s set in the 1950’s: a time I remember as a young child; though of New Zealand, not Australia.

I was still carrying around the impact of an earlier novel of Peter Carey’s I’d read, called His Illegal self,  in which the main character is a boy called Che, whom Carey portrays with utter authenticity. As I opened A Long Way From Home, I wondered whether I’d be equally impacted by a character, and how the story would affect me. Continue reading