Short story workshops – Goondiwindi & Brisbane

Winter seems to be short story season for me,

This week I’ll be heading out to Goondiwindi to teach a short story workshop on behalf of the State Library of Queensland Young Writers Award and the Queensland Writers Centre. It’s free! So if you are based nearby, please book in and I’ll help you become submission-ready for the big comp!

If you’re not sure if you should submit or not for the Young Writers Award, all I’m going to say is be brave and send a story in. This competition is a real career boost – trust me.

In July, I’ll also be teaching my Short Story Workout for the Queensland Writers Centre youth program in Brisbane. This is a full-day workshop, so you’ll definitely have leaky-brain by the time we hit 4.30pm. Last year we had some amazing young writers meet up and work on their stories, so if you’re keen you can book your place now. I’d love to see you there.

In the meantime, you can read my post for the Queensland Writers Centre on editing your short stories.


Launching big story

All of my new projects begin as secrets.

There is something magical about working alone while the ghost of an idea develops into something greater. Writers often talk about their books as their babies, and I suppose I have always felt that way as well. That in the early stages I need to protect my idea, feed it and help it grow without having too many outside opinions confusing me or tearing me away from what I believe it will become.

And so I have to tell you that I have been nurturing a secret project for a few months now. One that has meant that I had to put my writing projects aside and devote all my spare time to it. (Even on my birthday. I kid you not!)

So, I’m very proud to launch my secret project, big story, today.

Big story is an independent story school. Starting from January 2013, I’ll be running after-school drama and creative writing classes for primary and high schoolers on Brisbane’s north side.

I have taught both drama and writing before, so big story has been a long time coming. (If you’d like to know how I got in to acting and writing in the first place, you can see that on my first big story blog post.)

I’m so excited to work with young storytellers again, especially as the teacher and owner of big story.

Big story is about learning the craft like a professional but having a whole lot of fun and helping young artists meet up as well. (Read: no cheesy-cheese pantomimes but also no nasty pressure!)

Do you know a young actor or writer in Brisbane?

Tell them to join the big story facebook page (our online home) and keep in touch.

Big story peeps who are keen for a school holiday project, can also sign up for a free copy of my 50 Story Starters workbook. That’s 50 possible story ideas, people! Enough to keep any storyteller out of trouble until classes start next year.

So my secret’s out and I’m looking forward to my drama and writing classes next year. But in the meantime I have lesson plans to write and a neglected YA manuscript to tend to.