January 18, 2018 in Dag

My goal is to write something good

The statement above seems like a bit of a no-brainer. Doesn’t anybody who ever picks up a pen (or, as is more commonly the case now, places their fingers on a keyboard) want to write something good? Of course they do, and I’m not for a second suggesting that they don’t. The purpose of this post is to try and explain what those words mean to me.

I’m constantly seeing a lot of advice about the sorts of things writers need to do to be successful. Often it involves aspects like checking the market to see what’s popular, or working in very clearly defined genres, in order to ensure readers know what to expect.

January 11, 2018 in Dag

Vale Tandberg – farewell to another great

Last year was a sad one for people who follow politics and enjoy quality satire, with the passing of the great John Clarke. Now the new year has hardly begun and already we’re mourning the passing of another truly great humorist and satirist.

The name Ron Tandberg won’t mean a lot to people outside Australia, and possibly even to people outside Melbourne who aren’t regular readers of The Age newspaper. But many of us here in Melbourne are saddened to hear of his passing.

January 4, 2018 in Dag

A new year – a new set of goals

Well, here we are in 2018. A bright and shiny new year, in all its perfect, gleaming glory. Who knows what the year will hold? Who knows what possibilities will reveal themselves, and what disappointments will eventually emerge?

As usual, as the year begins, I think about what I’d like to achieve. I’m not really one for resolutions. And I certainly don’t gnash my teeth and flog myself if I don’t attain the things I originally planned for. But I do like to give myself some goals. It helps to give my life some structure, some solid objectives I can work towards. If I achieve them, that’s great. If not, well hopefully there’ll be another year to continue moving forward. So, without any further ado, here are my goals for 2018.

December 28, 2017 in Dag

Looking back over 2017

Another year glides over the horizon. Like a fair-weather friend who drifts into your life for a short time and then disappears, I feel like I’ve hardly gotten to know 2017. It barely seemed to have started, and suddenly I’m saying good bye to it.

Then again, maybe I should be saying good riddance. The year definitely did not pan out the way I’d hoped. I wasn’t expecting to be looking for a new job, barely two weeks in, and I wasn’t expecting to be looking for a new job again several months later.

December 21, 2017 in Dag

My pantsing is actually my plotting

As anybody vaguely in touch with the world of writing knows, one of the big discussions that regularly takes place relates to the pros and cons of plotting vs pantsing. In summary, a plotter is someone who plots out every aspect of their story before they begin writing, while a pantser is someone who basically makes it up as they go (i.e. flying by the seat of their pants).

When thinking about my position in this debate, I’ve always placed myself somewhere near the middle. There have been aspects of both plotting and pantsing in all my writing. Some of my stories have been very carefully plotted out from beginning to end (particularly the novels) while others have evolved at random with little idea of which way the story will progress (i.e. the Neville Lansdowne novellas).