Gather ‘Round the Campfire: The Wild World of Novel Writing Software

If there’s one thing I respect from an author, it’s when they know their world. When I read about the deserts of Arrakis or the seven kingdoms of Westeros, it feels like the author has actually lived there. Prolific fantasy author George R.R. Martin has a fascinating metaphor for this, suggesting that there are two types of writers: architects and gardeners. Architects meticulously plan beforehand, while gardeners plant the seed of their story and let the seasons tend to it. Yet, even Martin concedes that writing isn’t so binary, and that writers are often a mixture of both. I’ve always considered myself mostly a gardener. However, I recently decided to test my architectural mettle and build a fictional world from the ground up. In doing so, I discovered a whole new branch of writing in the digital age—the world of novel writing software. Gone are the days of J.R.R Tolkien’s drawers overflowing with maps of Middle Earth. Now the kids are using technology.

person holding white and brown newspaper

Unfortunately, Book Reviews Actually Matter

Debating the utility and function of book reviews—especially the reviews in The Age, Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian—is a near constant presence in the contemporary Australian publishing field. These debates typically centre around three distinct themes: reviewers should not review the books that their friends wrote; who is the reviewer writing for (is it … Continue reading Unfortunately, Book Reviews Actually Matter

Imagining a Nation of Readers

Melbourne is known as a City of Literature. The city hosts north of fifty writers festivals, with new ones cropping up every year. Melbourne is home to a plethora of literary journals and Indie bookstores. Writing competitions have become a sport for those who would rather flex a biro than a bicep. These opportunities provide a springboard for locals to expose their work ­– a tapestry of tales that enrich the nation.

Stack of books by a window sill

Why marketing is essential to your writing career: With Pagan Malcolm

Pagan Malcolm has always dreamed of becoming an author – she began writing when she was just five years old, and even handwrote and illustrated a twenty-page story in year four, convinced that it would be her debut. ‘[It] was a blatant rip off of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,’ she admits in retrospect. But … Continue reading Why marketing is essential to your writing career: With Pagan Malcolm

Red pen sitting upon a corrected page

Shakespeare had some help: editing and the myth of the solitary genius writer

A writer friend who’d begun teaching her craft at a university once advised me that, with my experience, I could teach ‘editing’, pronouncing this word as if naming Milo Yiannopoulos. Because that’s a subject close to my heart (editing, not Yiannopoulos), I was miffed at her acid tone. But typically, my response came to me … Continue reading Shakespeare had some help: editing and the myth of the solitary genius writer

Millennial Feminist Writing in #MeToo Literature

  Social media is a small numbers game: 280-character tweets, 15-second Instagram stories, 10-second snapchats. Generally speaking, if you were looking for 7,000-word longform, feminist fiction – social media is not the place to find it. Well, that was until a simple story about bad sex and imaginary cats surfaced the web last year. Published … Continue reading Millennial Feminist Writing in #MeToo Literature