About

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Thanks for visiting my website. I’d love to hear what you think about anything I post.    It takes courage to commit a large portion of your time to practising the craft of writing – but at last I’m ready to do this. I’ve had some short stories and non fiction published and I’m working on my first large piece of historical fiction.

I see this as a ‘literary’ site. I won’t give a ‘my journey’ description of my writing, but I may from time to time share some of the historical research. I’ve already started to do this on Facebook.

I love reading and keep an annotated log of the books I read. From time to time I post reviews of books I’ve found especially interesting. I attend a lot of concerts and plays, so there are reviews of some of these.

Playing the oboe is no longer the driving passion it once was for me – that seems to have been taken over by writing. But nevertheless, I love to play chamber music and recently I’ve had a go at jazz – more usually the province of clarinet or saxophone. Here I am playing Bach with my group, Trio con Brio.

trio-con-brio

In the past I’ve spent hours and hours practising – years ago I took out a diploma in performance from the Victorian College of the Arts. Now I think that the acquired discipline of music practice helps me to write. Some writing is like practising scales.

Until recently I worked in educational research and I ended up in interesting places: Uganda, Botswana, Colombia, Saudi Arabia . . . I’ve written about some of these experiences.

Most important to me is my writing group, Elwood Writers. We’ve been meeting since 2007. There’s a poet, an established short story writer and one member is working on an extended memoir. We meet every fortnight to discuss our work and, as a group, attend events such as the Adelaide Writers’ Festival. Our work has been broadcast on several programs of Cover to Cover on Vision Australia Radio. I encourage you to look at our blog:https://elwoodwriters.com/

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Why ‘little smackerel’? I guess the name will seem obscure to anyone unfamiliar with A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh. Pooh was very partial to a little smackerel of something around eleven o’clock – and it always seemed to be close to eleven o’clock. The ‘smackerel’ was usually honey.

My earliest memories of reading – and they are pretty early – are of my grandfather reading the Pooh stories using different voices for each of the characters. He did it very well. I think he loved the stories too. Recently I read that Mrs Milne played a large part in devising the characters and indeed this is acknowledged in a ‘Dedication’ at the beginning of The House at Pooh Corner.

Smackerel? This blog is devoted to my writing, but to just a taste of this and that. Early on, when my writing group first set up a blog, I innocently posted 1500 word short stories and slabs of novel. I was a Blog Hog. I hope that this blog will be more like a degustation platter.

My blog is organised into six categories: