Listen here! (1)

Listen here! (1)

I get bored easily. I always have. I do better if I have a book to occupy me, there are any number of games on my phone, carrying an iPad became mandatory once things called ‘iPad’ became available and I’m no good in the car without something on the radio. From there, podcasts were a natural progression. A history of driving an hour-plus to work each way, each day, together with an ‘early adopter’ approach to technology and the boredom…

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Of sliding doors and jigsaw puzzles

Of sliding doors and jigsaw puzzles

When I walk to buy sandwiches for lunch the air is sharp and promises snow. Today in Southern New Zealand it’s one of those blue sky sunny days that are so clear that I’m certain I can see all the way to Antarctica. The McDonalds a few blocks away declares in bold yellow letters immediately under its golden arches that it’s the southern most Maccas in the world, and today I have no difficulty believing it. But it’s warm in…

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I steal things – no, really I do (pt 2)

I steal things – no, really I do (pt 2)

As a fiction writer, I steal people, their gestures, patterns of speech, their history and stories. Then I dress it up and change it around in any way that suits me and my story. Usually it’s only the folks who recognise a small part of themselves who have any idea that I’m a thief. As a memoirist I don’t fictionalise people or borrow bits of them, or disguise them. Rather than take a little bit and change it, the idea…

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What David, and Mandy and John did next

What David, and Mandy and John did next

My cousin David  was a quiet man. At family gatherings there was always a hug for me from him and a smile and a “how have you been?” But unlike his brothers, David wasn’t big on conversation and he was the kind of fellow who would be standing to one side, with a few other blokes, beer in hand, talking about whatever it is that blokes talk about.  His brother Stan and I have loud, noisy conversations about just about…

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I steal things – no, really I do. (Pt 1)

I steal things – no, really I do. (Pt 1)

There. It’s out in the open now. I steal things. I will continue to steal things. You’ll know about it when I do, although you might not recognise the theft. Writers steal things. A gesture here, an expression there. Sometimes writers steal whole stories about people. An ex of mine got nearly an entire book of poetry out of our relationship, although if you didn’t know that it was really me and her, you wouldn’t have known. (Hello Catherine, how…

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Changing Memories

Changing Memories

Memories are set – right? We have a memory of an event or a conversation and that’s the way it was. Unlike Back to the Future, we can’t go back and change the past, no matter how much we might like to. So that party you were at, 20-something years ago, will always be that party where you drank too much, and your friend Lynne who knows everything had to bundle you into a taxi and take you home, stopping…

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