COVID-19 update

Unfortunately with the ongoing pandemic many events, both large and small, are being cancelled. Among these are the Newcastle Writer’s Festival in April and also the Write Here! festival in May. I was booked to appear at both events, though I have already been assured I will be able to appear at next year’s Write Here! festival. I think it’s highly likely I’ll be able to appear at next year’s Newcastle Writer’s Festival as well.

The book signing on March 29 I previously advertised has been postponed indefinitely. Organisers have assured me the event will be going ahead at a later date, once things have returned to normal. But as you’re probably aware, nobody has an exact idea of when that will be. The only other event I had already been booked for this year is in September. We can only hope the situation will have stabilised by then. In any case I’ll keep you posted.

As they say, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. At least that’s what I did in prison, using the enforced isolation to write my novel and then teach myself to draw. Now that I’m spending more time at home due to coronavirus I’m getting portrait drawing orders done a lot faster (send me an email if you’d like to order one), I’m making good progress on a couple different writing projects, plus I’m sure catching up on a lot of reading. If you’re looking for something to read to help pass the hours of self-isolation, obviously I do recommend my novel Scarred which is available on Kindle and for order from all good book retailers in paperback.

Stay safe everyone, and best wishes.

First public book signing

It’s going to be several weeks of firsts for me. Last night I was the guest of honour at a local book club meeting (pictured). The club had selected Scarred as their book of the month and asked me to come and talk about the experience of writing it, which was a very new and rewarding experience for me. And later this month I’ve been booked for my first public book signing event.

I’ll actually be in two Harry Hartog stores on Sunday the 29th of March. From 10:30am till 11:30 I’ll be signing copies of Scarred at their Kotara store, and then from 12:30pm till 1:30 I’ll be signing copies at their Green Hills branch. Come along if you’d like to buy a signed copy, get your existing copy signed, or just say hi and ask me some questions. If you can’t make it, you’ll still be able to catch me at my first public talk about my novel at the Newcastle Writer’s Festival on April 4th.

Dates confirmed for Newcastle Writer’s Festival

I’m very happy to announce the details have been released for my booked appearance at this years Newcastle Writer’s Festival. I’ll be on a panel with two other local authors, talking about the experience of writing our books and the journey to publication. My slot is on Saturday the 4th of April, from 11:30am till 12:30pm; you can find the entire festival program here. Aside from a brief speech at my book launch, this will be the first public talk I’ll be giving about my book, but it won’t be the last. I’ve already been booked elsewhere for another panel in May, plus a stand-alone talk in September. Stay tuned for further details about those.

Second art exhibition on display

Having a launch for an art exhibition is always a bit daunting. Thankfully my second one went just as well as my first. ‘Faces of Suspension’ launched last Friday night at Suspension Espresso in Islington, NSW. The art will still be on display until February 3rd, so go down and check it out if you get a chance.

Having a joint book launch and art exhibition and a second stand-alone art exhibition within two months has been a lot of work. Now that it’s over though I almost don’t know what to do with myself. Mostly I’m focusing on the autobiography (now 79,000 words in), though I’m still finding time to promote my novel Scarred. Check out this interview I did recently with the book website Awesome Gang.

Paper Chained Issue 3 available online

A huge thank you to all the very generous people who have contributed to the current fundraiser for Paper Chained, a journal aimed at people who have been affected by the prison system. While enough donations have now been raised to get the journal printed and posted into prisons, expenses are still ongoing, so any further donations would still be greatly appreciated.

As I mentioned in my previous post here, this issue of Paper Chained, like the previous two, contains a contribution from myself. This year, since the release date of Paper Chained was so close to that of my novel Scarred, I chose to submit the first chapter for everyone to read. So if you’ve been meaning to check out my novel anyway, you can now read the first chapter for free. Issue 3 of Paper Chained can be read online here.