Hope – developing

My play Hope  had a successful reading at Circa Theatre a few weeks ago. Now the director and others are forming a co-operative to put in a bid to Circa for a slot next year for a full production. That’s exciting to me. The process is quite demanding. First the director fills in a form... Continue Reading →

In bloom

My stylosa are coming out in bloom. The first spring flowers to appear in my garden. They are beautiful, fragile, perfectly formed. The clump that produces them gets little sun, no care and is an unkempt tangled mess of stylosa leaves, long grass and ivy. If only the tangled mess of ideas in my head... Continue Reading →


My oldest grandson and his partner came for dinner the other night. I was going on a bit about how nothing seems to work in the writing department for me at the moment. They urged me to write a memoir. I have been toying with that idea (and rejecting it) for some time. But I... Continue Reading →

Australian authors

Alex Miller is an Australian novelist whose writing I greatly admire. I’ve just read his 2022 novel  - A Brief Affair  - and enjoyed it immensely. It’s a gentle, loving look at family relationships, memory, and the importance of finding your right place in the world. We tend not to read Australian novels and they... Continue Reading →

Hope – a play

My daughter, who manages my website, has been reminding me that it’s time to write a new blog. But with the garden needing attention and the weather very conducive to sitting on Laughton’s park bench ruminating on nothing of importance, the blog gets forgotten. However it’s a new year and new things are happening. During... Continue Reading →

Writing tips

A friend who helps me with the garden asked yesterday if I could give her some tips for writing a children’s story. ‘A chapter book,’ she said. I have never written a chapter book for children, but I made suggestions which have been made to me over the years and which seem to work whether... Continue Reading →

Festival season continues

This seems to be the season for writers’ festivals. I’m just back from a lovely day at Featherston, speaking to a lively group there. And just before that was in Christchurch, receiving the NZSA Heritage Literary Award for Fiction! Harbouring won which was a thrill for me. Now the Verb Festival is about to launch... Continue Reading →

Godwits return

The godwits have arrived back in New Zealand. I love it that any church bells still surviving in Christchurch ring out when the first godwits arrive  from Alaska – usually in Rocking Horse Bay. Some years ago Laughton and I were transfixed, as were many New Zealanders, by the story, of a returning godwit which... Continue Reading →


I’ve been on tour promoting Harbouring these last few weeks. First a couple of appearances at the large Auckland Writers’ Festival and then, at the other end of the scale but just as exciting, at the Central Hawkes Bay Festival. My gig was at the amazing Gwavas Homestead out in the country far from towns.... Continue Reading →

Writers & Readers Festivals

It seems this is the season for writers’ Festivals. I have four appearances lined up between now and the end of the year. The first is the mighty Auckland Writers’ Festival this week. I will be appearing on Thursday 25th in the gala opening at 7 pm and the next day Friday at 11 am... Continue Reading →

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