On Writing

Writers, editors, agents, publishers and more share their thoughts, experiences and stories.

A few of our favourite writers share their go-to writing exercises.

Sandi Wallace has advice for aspiring series writers on wrangling character, continuity – and URST.

 

The desire to bring writers and readers together is what drives Australian independent publishing, says Transit Lounge co-founder, Barry Scott.

Judith Rodriguez reports from the International Translation and Linguistic Rights Committee.

 

I’ve just attended the PEN International conference of its International Translation and Linguistic Rights Committee, held in India with its 27 official languages.

A survivor’s guide to writing historical fiction when you can’t afford a research trip by Wendy J Dunn.

 

Let me begin by telling you a story.

A few years back I went to see another acclaimed production of ‘Hamlet’. It was okay, though Hamlet looked a bit too just-outof-bed for me and Ophelia had one of those universal accents acquired from television, such that I expected her at any moment to say ‘OMG! That’s awesome!’ But that’s all by-the-by, because it’s the words we go for, isn’t it? Those oh-so-famous speeches that half the audience knows by heart – what pressure to deliver those and hope to satisfy!

‘Good morning Eliza, my name is Dr Gillespie, I am here to talk to you.’

‘What did you say your name was?’

‘Dr Gillespie.’

‘Your first name?’

‘Still Dr Gillespie to you Eliza

The sound of chairs scraping across wooden floorboards roused me from my Sunday morning slumber. Rubbing my eyes, I slumped down the stairs to find one of my six-year-old son’s living room ‘rehearsals’ in full swing. He had been given a part in the movie ‘Gremlins 3’, as one of the Gremlins of course, and he was preparing furiously at home.

ALAA agent Jacinta di Mase answers some common questions about literary agents.
 

What does a literary agent do?

A literary agent is a writer’s representative in the commercial world: their manager, their business representative, protector of their copyright, the one who weighs in on the side of the author/illustrator in all dealings. 

Story is an ancient art form. They stood by the campfire, the early storytellers, and gave shape to their experiences, and in doing this, they gave voice to the collective. The storyteller acquired their art through practice. Their tales took shape as they worked at them. They found the best ways to tell their stories by standing in front of an audience, and seeing what worked, through trial and error.