• Debbish does England – 41 hours to Harrogate

    Friday, July 21, 2023 Permalink

    ** I found this post wallowing in my drafts folder, written on arrival in Harrogate for the Theakston Crime Writing Festival, so I’m belatedly posting it. **

    I’m not exactly sure why I kept calculating the hours. Perhaps I thought I was on track for some sort of Guinness Book of Records award for number-of-hours-awake or something. Of course it’s most likely I was just feeling sorry for myself and wanted to make sure I could accurately document the travails of travel here on my site. And yes, please take a moment to acknowledge my hardship. (#firstworldproblems and all of that)

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  • Prevaricating

    Thursday, April 14, 2022 Permalink

    I’d basically decided two weeks ago that I would indeed go to England in late July to attend the Old Peculier Crime Writers Festival. I decided it was a no-brainer. “Life’s short!” I told myself as I contemplated the idea of a 2-3 week holiday to look forward to. I sent an email to the organisers to book an accommodation package for the festival.

    And then I checked some Covid-related insurance information. Read some fine-print. It seems not everything is covered and I pondered the likelihood of something unforeseen happening before then, or while I’m away.

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  • The Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival

    Tuesday, January 25, 2022 Permalink

    I’ve talked before about the fact that I’m not a big traveller. My parents weren’t either and I was well into adulthood before I ‘travelled’ just for the sake of it… or to ‘see’ stuff.

    After working overseas for a while and travelling quite a bit for work however I became almost antipathic about the idea of travel and spent a dozen years having staycations or visiting family or friends on holidays before finally renewing my passport in 2016 to see my bestie who’d moved to New Zealand. My travelling cherry re-broken, as I’d always dreamt of going to Italy, I then headed off on a writing retreat in Tuscany in 2018.

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  • Not writing? Or overthinking about writing?

    Monday, April 26, 2021 Permalink

    As you all know – having committed the tedium that-is-my-life-to memory – I started some postgraduate study last year. I kicked off with three subjects which was probably a bit ambitious given it’d been over 20 years since I’d completed my previous Masters.

    Anyhoo, I’m studying writing and literature so it’s kinda perfect given the direction my life has taken and I guess you’d say I’m following my passion. Albeit at $2750 per subject.

    I’ve talked on social media however about the down-side… that I’m thinking too much about writing. Not that I’m obsessed with writing, in fact I’m not writing. Rather, I’m overthinking about how I write. It was bad enough when I was doing feature writing last semester (definitely my passion) but this semester I’m doing an editing subject and… It. Is. Killing. Me.

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  • Alexander: Read. Listen. Watch.

    Monday, November 30, 2020 Permalink

    I returned to University to study (another) Masters mid year. Although I find some of the referencing requirements laborious and confusing and some of the academic-speak a bit wanky, it’s actually aligning with my interests. In a publishing subject for example, we discussed changing technology and its impact on the industry. It seems that good old print books are hanging in there, despite the increase in ebooks but that audiobooks are an area of growth. This, I understand is possibly piggy backing on the popularity of podcasts*.

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  • October 2020 done and dusted

    Thursday, October 29, 2020 Permalink

    I had great plans to blog more regularly. To write more personal posts here, rather than just book reviews. But it feels everything I contemplate is emotionally treacherous and would require a lot self-reflection. Added to that, most would be for my benefit… cos I need to get stuff out of my head or ponder it more and I’m not sure that would offer entertaining reading.

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  • Revisiting my life in Africa

    Friday, September 11, 2020 Permalink

    One of my University subjects requires me to write a personal essay. All three subjects actually require ‘major’ assignments and I keep changing my mind about them. But drafts of two are now due in mere days, so I figure I need to stop friggin’ procrastinating and worrying that I’ve not chosen the perfect topic and just start writing.

    I (eventually) decided my personal essay would be about my time in Africa. Long-time readers of my blog will recall I’ve often pondered the idea of writing some sort of factional account of my 18mths (or so) there in the mid 1990s.

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  • Back to school – returning to study?

    Wednesday, May 13, 2020 Permalink

    I completed my MBA (Master of Business Administration) in 1998. Apparently that is more than a decade ago. Even more than two decades ago. Apparently.

    I’d started the MBA before heading overseas to work in international development so completed it by distance and have vivid memories of trying to explain to a lecturer – via fax or telephone (ie. before internet) – that I was living in Mozambique. A Portuguese-speaking country and had no access to any English texts or literature of any kind.

    Anyhoo… it’s a long time since I’ve done any formal study. And I should admit, I hated study. Hated it. I always did far better at subjects requiring understanding and ‘doing’ rather than ‘learning’.

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  • Burdekin Readers and Writers Festival

    Friday, March 6, 2020 Permalink

    My creativity is always piqued when I meet writers and they talk about their craft. So just after I returned home from my 2018 trip to Italy (involving a week or two either side of my week-long writing retreat in Tuscany… and doesn’t that roll off the tongue far too easily?!) I was on the lookout for ways to prevent my writing mojo from withering and dying. Again.

    And I came across the Burdekin Readers and Writers Festival in Queensland.

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