Category Archives: Author Interviews

Interview with Bill Wilkie, author of The Daintree Blockade


Last week I reviewed The Daintree Blockade: The Battle for Australia’s Tropical Rainforests. This week Bill Wilkie, the author of that excellent book, kindly took the time to answer some questions for me.

He’s also generously made a special offer to readers of this blog, Adventures in Biography. Details at the bottom of this post…

Bill grew up in Brisbane and studied sociology and Australian history at the University of Queensland. He has lived in London, Dublin and Sydney, and travelled throughout Europe, Asia and South America. Bill now lives in the small Queensland town of Mossman with his partner and their two daughters.

Bill was a participant in the ACT Writers Centre’s HARDCOPY 2015 program, which was where I first met him. (You can find a compilation of all my posts about the program here.) I found him to be friendly, supportive and quietly intelligent.

The Daintree Blockade is your first book – what sort of writing have you done up until now? Read the rest of this entry


Online Discussion with Lucy Treloar, author of Salt Creek


Lucy TreloarLast night HARDCOPY participants (past and present) were lucky enough to take part in an online Facebook discussion with Australian novelist Lucy Treloar. Here are some of the highlights of Lucy’s responses (reproduced with the permission of Lucy, and of the HARDCOPY project officer Nigel Featherstone.)

For 90 minutes Lucy was inundated with questions and she gamely fielded them with good cheer and fascinating insights.

Lucy’s debut novel Salt Creek, was published by Picador in August 2015 (click through for my review). Salt Creek has been shortlisted for the 2016 Miles Franklin Award. The novel also won the Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year, and it has been shortlisted for one of the Nita B. Kibble Literary Awards – the Dobbie Award.

Just to be clear, the questions were posed on the fly by various 2016 HardCopiers and not by me. I’ve edited only a little, and then simply to tidy up (for example occasionally the conversation drifted to pleasant thoughts of wine!) In some places I’ve changed the order of the questions, simply to ensure similar questions flow from one to the next.

The theme of the discussion, agreed beforehand, was ‘editing’.

Did you have to ‘kill any darlings’ while you were editing, and how difficult was it to identify them in the first place, and then to cut them? Read the rest of this entry

9 Questions: an interview with Eleanor Limprecht, author of Long Bay


Eleanor Limprecht Take note now so you can tell your bookish friends “I told you so.”  Eleanor Limprecht is an Australian writer you’re likely to hear a lot more about.

Limprecht is in the throes of launching her new book, Long Bay (which I reviewed last week) but she kindly took the time to answer some questions for me.  Her answers are thoughtful and articulate – just like her books, really.

And in a literary scoop for Adventures in Biography, read on to discover just how recently Limprecht became an Australian citizen – welcome to Oz, Eleanor!

To recap, Long Bay is a fictional account of the real-life Rebecca Sinclair, a woman convicted in 1909 for manslaughter, as the result of performing a botched abortion.  Sinclair, in her twenties, was sentenced to three years hard labour at the Long Bay Women’s Reformatory.  Six months later she gave birth to a daughter.  Limprecht’s novel depicts Sinclair’s life with insight, sympathy and telling detail.  The razor-sharp line between making just enough money to keep a family and falling into penury is chillingly demonstrated and lends the novel – a genuine page turner – a dark air of foreboding. 

There are lots of stories in the archives – why was it that Rebecca Sinclair’s story captured you? Read the rest of this entry


Online Discussion with Clare Wright, author of The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka


Forgotten Rebels of Eureka by Clare WrightThe lovely people at the ACT Writers Centre are going above and beyond to ensure that the HARDCOPY professional development program for emerging writers is a cracker.

Last night we HARDCOPY participants were lucky enough to take part in an online discussion with Associate Professor Clare Wright. For 90 minutes we inundated her with questions and she gamely fielded them with wisdom and insight.

It’s hard to say what Clare is best known for:  The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka won the 2014 Stella Prize; her first book Beyond the Ladies Lounge: Australia’s Female Publicans was a best seller; she is a gifted essayist with work appearing in The Age, Crikey, The Guardian, The Conversation, The Week, Overland, Women’s Agenda and Meanjin as well as leading national and international scholarly journals.  But perhaps you know Clare from being on the telly – she appeared as a member of ‘The Brains Trust’ in over 40 episodes of the long-running ABC quiz show, The Einstein Factor.

With the permission of Clare, and of the HARDCOPY project officer, below are some of the highlights of Clare’s responses.  The actual online ‘conversation’ was much more convoluted, with questions and answers and comments coming in fast and furious from about 20 curious HARDCOPIERS.

Clare began by Read the rest of this entry