About

I started a book in the 70’s and finished it in the 80’s. In fact it was never meant to be a book. It was a collection of mad cap letters and the replies. Friends kept borrowing my file of letters and I freaked out worrying that if it was lost – that was it. In 1986 I self published it with help from a printing shop. I made $1,200 and went on a holiday. It was called ‘No Names Book’. Also in that year ABC Radio bought one of my comedy scripts. They produced it and placed it on-air. It was just a short piece and I earned a few hundred dollars. More importantly it boosted my confidence.

I wrote another five books whilst in Thailand all under different names. Two were dual language.

For the past four decades, my main employment has been in communications, with a focus on media and advertising. I have written advertising for radio and television, skits for radio, created and written TV series as well as full length TV specials. But I much prefer the freedom today of writing fiction. Less constraints and much more fun. It gets a bit lonely at times but that is the life of a writer.

ChatGpt, Claude and other AI’s

I use the AI to check a scene or a chapter and then ask for listed suggestions. I never ask for a re-write – it tries to sometimes but I remind it of my instructions ‘never re-write my work’. I don’t want the joys of discovery being taken away from me. For those who use an AI, good luck to them, but it is not my style. Incidentally Claude can comment on a full novel. I uploaded a 120,000 manuscript and it came back with valuable comments. Then I can ask specific questions which makes it analyse the manuscript further. As a writing aid it is fabulous, but like any feedback, it may not be right for the writer.

Technology

In infant school I learned to write on a slate with a slate pen. Then to a pen on paper. Then in the 70’s I created my first book on an Olivetti typewriter. Then in the 80’s I wrote my first play on an IBM computer with no hard disc (floppy discs). I’ve written numerous TV Series on PC’s. Wrote and formatted two books on an early Mac with a floppy disc. These days, the excitement of writing is still there, but technology has changed. Today is so much better for the writer. But it’s the same old head that creates the ideas.

In 2021, amidst the global pandemic and unrest in the country I was living, I found myself returning to my native Australia with unexpected free time on my hands. Each morning on my walks, I would listen to vintage radio mysteries, eventually discovering the world of author interviews via podcasts. As I listened to the stories of successful writers, one thing became clear: the key to success in writing was simply sitting down and doing it.

My writing is quite dark. I love black comedy and the joy that comes from creating something totally ridiculous and different. That is my style. It is not everyone’s style. Thanks for reading this far.