I make up stuff, I’m arty and I’m a bit of a nerd. That’s the short version.
I love telling stories. One of those stories starts with "No, when I was in the Wiggles they already had a Jeff so I had to use my middle name..." I regularly have whole bunches of kids in the school where I work believing I was once Eddie the Evil Wiggle and was sacked from the show after some parents complained that there shouldn't be an evil Wiggle. I use this story to demonstrate how a storyteller can make the most unlikely events (and if you have ever heard me sing you would understand just how unlikely this is) seem believable. Writing stories down for others to read and enjoy is one of the most special thing anyone can hope to do.
I write short stories, chapter books, picture book texts, junior and young adult novels.
My first book, 'Paper Magic' is due for release by IFWG Publishing Australia in Mid 2013.
In 2009, my children's story, 'Marina Mack and the Magic Paper' was shortlisted for the Charlotte Duncan Award for Children's Literature. That story has now been reworked into the chapter book, 'Paper Magic' with some invaluable help from one of my all time favourite children's authors, Sandy Fussell.
My children's ghost story, 'Under the Owl Tree' is soon to be published in the anthology 'Charms', edited by Sally Odgers.
My current work-in-progress is a Junior novel titled 'Olivia Stone and the Trouble With Trixies.' The story explores how hard it is to protect the world from the monsters when most don't come out until past your bedtime. It is the first book in 'The Guardians of St. Giles' series.
I think drawing and painting comes a close second in the special things category. I have been an artist for a long time but I have only recently started doing illustrations for children’s books. You might think being an artist and illustrator is basically the same thing but it’s not. Illustrating, like writing is all about telling a story. I have been lucky enough to find a publisher who has allowed me to not only create the illustrations for my upcoming book Paper Magic, but also let me design the cover art for the book too. Usually the writer gets very little say in a books artwork.
I work in watercolours, oils, acrylics, pastels and digitally, using a stylus and graphics tablet to paint. I'm a member of the Bathurst Arts Trail and open my Studio-Gallery to the public on the first weekend of each month.
Rectangular canvases can get a little boring, so I've painted on satin, velvet, gum and silver birch leaves as well as odd shaped pieces of rock. It makes planning the composition much more of a challenge.
A lot of my works feature children and animals. My first art exhibition 'Bless the Beasts and the Children' was very successful with the majority of the works selling on the opening night.
I illustrated part of the teacher resource package for Sandy Fussell's CBCA nominated book 'Polar Boy.' I have provided the cover illustrations for the on-line magazine for children - 'Literature For Kids' and I'm now an illustrator for IFWG Publishing and SQ Mag.
In 2013, my painting 'Coastal Meeting' won second prize in the annual Evan's Art's Council art show.