News Blog

south India, September 2017: a transition time

After leaving Turkey I came to southern India, where I’ve spent much time in the past (settings for some of my books: Neem Dreams and With the Tiger). For 10 days I was “scholar in residence” at Christ University, Bangalore, comfortably accommodated on the beautiful campus, with a program of lectures on topics from Creative Writing (doing; assessing) to Feminist Utopias to Transculturalism. Wonderful company, food, and weather (mostly mild with some thunderous monsoon rain). Now I’m in Chennai, seeing old friends and students (now teachers themselves) and being fed masses of Tamil food. Have some college talks here too. It’s a transition time after 5.5 years in Turkey and my return to Australia.

Latest Local Time Publishing Newsletter

Newsletter July 2017 can be found here
And if you don’t already subscribe you can subscribe here: subscribe

My new page at Patreon: have a look

I created a page at as a way for supporters to offer material support for even a small amount per month. Patrons all get access to a patrons-only blog, and a Q+A page, as well as other rewards. I’m not sure what further rewards to offer, so am inviting people to suggest some, as well as to add their conclusion to “I want to support you on Patreon because …”

Ventspils Writers House, July 2017

Wonderful to be back at the International Writers and Translators House in Ventspils, Latvia for a month of writing. I was here before, in July 2009 working on Local Time memoir. It is an ideal place for writing: the house provides simple comfortable rooms where many muses have danced before; the town is pretty and peaceful, with extensive, well-tended parklands, a picturesque walk along the river, and a Baltic Sea beach.
Everyone is immersed in their work. Here’s the link about Ventspils House:
and here’s the House’s Facebook page with details about the current residents:

3rd Newsletter from Local Time Publishing

3rd Newsletter from Local Time Publishing is now available. A bit of my news of my literary activities since the September equinox. There are links to subscribe, and to read the Newsletters 1 and 2. Responses are welcome. Here:

Torino, Italy. EACWP 21-24 September 2016

I went to Torino [Turin] for the seminar and conference of the European Association of Creative Writing Programs. A delight to be with a range of writers and teachers from several countries, attending sessions then talking and drinking a lot of good wine into the night. I gave two papers at the conference, attended many more as well as some workshops and especially enjoyed the playful yet serious, imaginative and broad-ranging approaches to Creative Writing teaching of the participants, a contrast to the publication-oriented academic approach. After the conference the final day in Turin was spent in an excursion to the nearby Venaria Reale, for a taste of olden splendour, and a Mike McCurry photographic exhibition.

New Email Newsletter: Seasons, world events, life goes on, literature survives

The new email newsletter can be viewed here:

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New email newsletter will come soon. Soon. Currently traveling
Meanwhile, you can see the first newsletter here
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review of Ghosts Like Us

Review of Ghosts Like Us in Newtown Review of Books
“Ghosts Like Us is a sharply intellectual work, poised, and as avant-garde in its construction as the worlds it depicts. “

“Transcultural Space and the writer” in Humanities journal

My essay “Transcultural Space and the writer” has been published in the journal Humanities.

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As a long time writer, I always found, even before I began to publish, that my work was difficult to categorise, even while categories seemed essential for publication, reception and visibility. In this personal essay, I apply the notion of the transcultural to a short writing [auto]biography. The methodology adopted for this purpose is a form of autoethnography: “a form of self-reflection and writing that explores the researcher’s personal experience and connects this autobiographical story to wider cultural, political, and social meanings and understandings”1 to explore how my immigrant background and transcultural lived experience is reflected in my creative writing, and to give an account of how my literary output has been placed in various but always restrictive pre-existing categories. I am also encouraged by Mikhail Epstein’s proposed “scriptorics”, the study of the one who writes Each section of the essay is divided into two: the first sections provide a succinct version of the issues in a developing writer’s life, framed by the need for the practice and production to “belong” somewhere; the second sections take them to a posited “Transcultural Space” where the work seems more authentically to have originated and in which it seems to be more perceptively read. The result is not so much a conventional academic article as a fiction writer’s reflection on her work in the embrace of an inclusive and meaning-making realm.