May, 2011

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The epic qualities of outwardly ordinary lives: By Nightfall and Michael Cunningham in Australia

, May 25, 2011

By Nightfall, Michael Cunningham, HarperCollins (Aus pb, Aus ebook, US and Kindle, UK) Over the past few days I’ve been in the audience of four sessions featuring my favourite American author Michael Cunningham. Cunningham’s latest novel is By Nightfall. I’ve drafted a few posts on it since I read it, but was never able to adequately […]
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‘What is a short story?’ Jon Bauer’s Sleepers Almanac and app launch speech

, Sep 03, 2010

Last night, author Jon Bauer (Rocks in the Belly, Scribe) launched the sixth Sleepers Almanac and the new Sleepers literary app at the Bella Union Bar, Trades Hall, Melbourne. I thought his speech was wonderful, so with Jon’s kind permission, here it is for you all to read: Have you ever had that moment on a […]
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Like, embrace the pain: the Bret Easton Ellis interview (part 1)

, Aug 18, 2010

Pictured: Carrie, Samantha, Carrie Let’s begin at the end. After Kathy Charles and I finished our interview with the very engaging Bret Easton Ellis, we sat with his publicist over a couple of glasses of Chandon, waiting for Ellis to wrap-up with our friend Robbie Coleman. Robbie emerged, white-faced and swearing, revealing that the interviewee had turned interviewer […]
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Exquisite restraint for maximum expression: an interview with Colm Tóibín (part two)

, Jul 07, 2010

Brooklyn Colm Toibin (Aus, US) Picador 9780330425612 Part one of this interview can be found here. Tóibín has, to date, written or edited 21 books. I asked him which had been the most difficult to write, and which had been the most joyful. He said: ‘There’s a long story in the collection Mothers and Sons which I […]
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What I’m learning about my writing process

, Jun 09, 2010

Thanks to the wonderful Victorian Writers’ Centre, I received a fellowship which allows me three months in a studio in Glenfern, St Kilda – a gorgeous heritage house. Seventy percent of my Doctor of Creative Arts will be fiction, and so – I have begun the novel. As this is the first time since I was […]
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Peter Goldsworthy on Gravel

, Mar 09, 2010

Gravel Peter Goldsworthy Hamish Hamilton March 2010 (Australia) 9781926428192 Gravel is Peter Goldsworthy’s new collection of short stories – amusing and moving – covering a range of predominantly white middle-class characters in conflict with their own egos. But there are also stories exploring erotic awakening (something Goldsworthy did well in Everything I Knew) and others where […]

Melbourne Writers Festival 2009 diary part two: Grenville, Michaels and the ‘engine of curiosity’

, Aug 22, 2009

Stories everywhere: The guy in the ACMI cafe shares my love of David Bowie, and they make a mean ham toastie. The title of the session Oranges are the Only Fruit alludes the the Orange Prize, which guests Anne Michaels and Kate Grenville have both won. Peter Clarke was a generous and intelligent chair, steering […]