Quick Tips #4: Dialogue

Dialogue is one of the trickiest things to get right. It requires a good ear, and the ability to make speech sound natural even though it is probably the most carefully constructed, "artificial" component of any fictional work. What I mean: Counterintuitively, dialogue in fiction should not mimic everyday speech. Humans say a lot of…

Quick Tips #2: Write Small

It's tempting to think you have to "write big" about big issues. It's much more powerful, however, to write quietly; to whisper the most profound things. Even better, to "get out of the way" and let those things whisper their power all by themselves. Often what we leave out - or what we gently brush past…

Our Father

I wrote this story ten years ago, after my father-in-law (at the time) died. I wanted to somehow make sense of my profound feelings at having witnessed his death. It was published in Takahē magazine (a literary journal) in 2013. Today, on Father's Day, I remember Carl Bosselmann, and everyone who has lost a father.…

Stage vs Page: or Why Not Both?

I’ve been thinking about artistic expression and validation: how I embrace the former and seek the latter. I’m a writer, but I’m also a musical theatre performer. This comes as a surprise to many people. Writing is such a solitary, introspective art, they say. How do you marry that with the intensely public display that…

A Novel Contract

Yesterday I signed a publishing contract with New Zealand Publisher Cloud Ink Press. My debut novel will be launched in February 2022. A friend asked me how I felt (which I thought was rather lovely - most people offered their congratulations, which was fantastic and expected, but this friend, perhaps aware that signing a publishing…