Accessibility Tools

  • Content scaling 100%
  • Font size 100%
  • Line height 100%
  • Letter spacing 100%


At some stage in every workshop on the art of memoir somebody raises the question of ethics, of privacy, and of who has the right to tell a version of a story. How far, the author of Reaching One Thousand asks, is she prepared to ‘sacrifice other people’s privacy’? What betrayals will she ‘perpetrate on others’?

... (read more)

In January this year the New York Times ran a controversial review article titled ‘The Problem with Memoirs’, in which staffer Neil Genzlinger praised ‘the lost art of shutting up’. He heaped scorn on ‘our current age of oversharing’ and on the accompanying glut of memoirs on every imaginable aspect of human experience. But he reserved particular scorn for what he identified as the latest trendy topic: ‘books by parents, siblings and teachers of people with autism.’ He advised, ‘If you’re jumping on a bandwagon, make sure you have better credentials than the people already on it.’

... (read more)

I was always going to be a novelist. At the age of six, I wrote fiction about a Willie Wagtail, whose best friend was an ant (even then I had a good grasp on relationships). Several years later I had moved on to human protagonists, mainly young girls living at boarding school and excelling at ballet. I had no experience of either, but I had my dreams. As an adolescent I wrote stories about homelessness and drug addiction, once again from vicarious experience. Then I went to university to do a literature degree and realised that great Australian novelists were serious, learned and (then) mostly male. I still wanted to write my novel, but I decided to live a bit first.

... (read more)
I have often admired the mystical way of Pythagoras, and the secret magic of numbers.
Sir Thomas Browne, Religio Medici
The real world is not given to us, but put to us by way of a riddle.
Albert Einstein

In the kitchen of my mother’s houses there has always been a wooden stand with a ...