The local folklore of secret complexes inside Castle Hill, which sits on the edge of the city centre, and other infrastructure supposedly elsewhere around the Townsville area, has always fascinated me. These places have been searched for for years without success.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm often in the shed doing woodwork, usually something useful like a small table to sit by the side of an armchair. My biggest project has been a Gothic inspired bookcase built in three pieces; shelves, stand, reading slope. I also enjoy bookbinding and I have one full on effort in a Medieval vein with sewn signatures, and sewn in leather cords that are attached to the wooden covers which, as I didn't have a couple of oaken boards, I used plywood instead. I'm still sewing covers for it that will be pasted on.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was brought up in Manchester in the North West of England and left for Australia in 1973. If my place of upbringing has influenced my writing in any way perhaps someone else can say.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I have only vague memories of the compositions I used to write at school, in the first years of secondary that is, where I was encouraged by a young woman teacher who was the daughter of a vicar and his wife, and who drove an MG, a 1950's MG, because that's when all this happened.
What is your writing process?
I'll usually do my writing at a computer in the evening during the working week and get by quite well even with a TV in the background.
What do you read for pleasure?
Books on architecture, history, furniture.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
A Samsung Galaxy. With a 10.1" screen it's ideal for looking at illustrations as well as reading text without squinting.
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