Writing

Typewiters, Robert Messeenger, from A to Z exhibition at CMAG Galleries 2012

From a young age I liked to doodle – doodle words rather than pictures (to this day my drawing doesn’t go beyond a stick figure or two!) I think it stemmed from being absolutely bored out of my tiny brain at school. Unfortunately I didn’t have any teachers (until I got to University and then there were only a few) that inspired me, so more often than not I found myself doodling words on pages, crafting secret codes or penning crazy ‘poems’ that only I could understand. (Not because they were intelligent but because they were often an incoherent, garbled mess.)

I was thrilled when in grade six I found a partner in crime, a school-mate who shared my love for the cryptic message. We spent most of our days sending notes to and fro comprised of our own secret semaphore.  Part of the fun was cracking the key word/s we had to then apply to the alphabet to structure our private notes.

Throughout University I would continue to write poetry, in notebooks or on the back of lecture notes when my mind would drift from the voice of the lecturer and to a world far away.

Then when I first went overseas, (it was pre iphone, ipad and all the other wonderful gadgetry we now have on offer) if you wanted to keep in touch with the folks and friends back home then you had to call from a card or pay phone or you had to write a letter and send it via snail mail. My father was the king of letter writing. I used to love arriving at my next destination to find a letter waiting from him which invariably included snippets from the local and national paper, news articles that he thought I couldn’t live without. I would write back too, telling him of the marvellous things I had seen, adventures I was having and of course how much I missed him and Mum.

Working in PR and journalism allowed me to develop new kinds of writing skills and it was here that I learnt quickly not to become precious about my work. When your story comes back with red slashes from an Editors pen all across it, it doesn’t necessarily mean that he/she thinks you’re incompetent it might just mean that you’ve written a novel instead of text to fit a 5cm column! And if it is crap, so what, you can fix it!

Today my passion is still with poetry. I like reading it and writing it. There are so many styles and forms out there to try but part of the fun is developing your own. I particularly like free-verse and the more avante-garde where you can be unconstrained and let your inhibitions out… The Beatniks , for those reasons, are my personal favourites, the likes of Ginsberg, Kerouac, Burroughs, Weiss, Cassady and di Prima.  They never shied away from breaking the rules.

Now I have published my first poetry collection, Fragments which is available on this site as well as from all good booksellers.

I hope you enjoy the mix of poetry, non-fiction and creative writing I will be sharing on my blog.