Includes information about Rosemary's late husband, author / journalist / film editor Andrew Wade, and his environmental fairy story, JORELL.

10.12.14

Announcement — SHE TOO Calendar. A great gift for yourself or another poetic soul.



A monthly calendar of your favourite pin-up poets and sample poems. Click on the pic to view and buy.

OR












Buy the book (over there in the right-hand side bar, see) and get a free one-page calendar as a gift (just the rudie-nudie photos as above!).

For details, click here.

4.11.14

New ebooks, new Amazon page!

How exciting: I have a new Amazon page! Click here to see.

This has been created in conjunction with the release of two new chapbooks which I've been working on for some time. There they are at the right, in my sidebar, look!

LIFE AFTER DEATH consists of poems I wrote in the first intense weeks after Andrew's death, chronicling the adjustment to such a radical change in my life.

THE IMAGINED OTHER is a series of somonka, love poems in the form of pairs of tanka, each pair forming a conversation between two lovers, like a call and response. They were written for a form challenge at Robert Lee Brewer's 'Poetic Asides' section of Writers' Digest. I wrote some by myself, taking both voices; the rest were collaborations with other poets.

These are very short books — but, I hope, not slight!

They are ebooks. I don't intend to produce them as paperbacks.

My Amazon page, set up by my publisher, surprised me in a couple of ways. For one thing, I found out I am included in a Bibliography of Australian Literature — but I am unlikely to find out what they say about me, as the volume costs around $80!  Next time I am in a major city with a major reference library, perhaps I'll check.

The other surprise was to find that my 2005 publication, SECRET LEOPARD, is selling second-hand for over $400! In fact that's the lowest price. Other used copies are selling for over $700! I assure you that neither I nor Amazon set those prices! And if anyone is foolish enough to buy at that price, I won't see any of the money. I did sell it through Amazon myself when it first came out, but it wasn't exactly a best-seller, and Amazon eventually dropped it. Now some sellers are evidently treating it as a collector's item. It's true there are not too many left, but until they run out you can get them from me at $10 each, plus postage. Clearly a bargain!

2.9.14

Party time! Virtual book launch

'People who haven't seen me for a while sometimes ask, 'Are you still writing poetry?' To which the answer is always yes. It's how I've spent my life since the age of seven, through all other events and circumstances.

Occasionally I produce books of it and/or get published in literary journals or anthologies. I mostly play online these days, so the journals and anthologies are as often as not digital only, and now I'm branching out into ebooks of my work. 

First cab off the rank is actually a collaboration with three other women: Helen Patrice of Melbourne, who has been a  close friend for many years, and Delaina Miller of Kansas City, Missouri and Leigh Spencer of Tucson, Arizona, whom we've got to know online. We love each other's writing, so after we all participated in a month-long poem-a-day challenge earlier this year, Delaina suggested we combine the results.

It's been a heck of a project, time-consuming, exciting and challenging, and we've learnt heaps. As you may know, I was once an independent publisher of poetry; some of my books even got international awards. Creating an ebook is whole a different experience, with different requirements. But we did it!

The book is now available on Kindle, iBooks and Google Play. It is also available as a pdf file. It is 155 pages long and only costs $7.77 (USD).

We asked four poets of stature online (one a Kindle poetry best-seller) to write some blurbs for us. We received an embarrassment of riches — not just a few polite sentences but paragraphs of generous praise — and had to do some reluctant cutting. 

Obviously I am saying all this to convince you that you might like it even though it's poetry!  

We're having a virtual launch on facebook this coming weekend, where we'll answer questions, tell outrageous true stories, do a reading via YouTube (not yet available to the general public), run competitions and give away goodies as prizes.

But what if you can't come? Well you can still get the book, in whatever format suits you best, via the link here; look top right. Yes, it's the book called She Too, with purple cover and Venn diagram. (That's the back cover illustrated left.) There are various options to click on to buy it in your preferred format. 

Or you could go direct to Kindle, iBooks or Google Play and do a search — in which case you'll need to use the whole title: She Too: Four voices in (almost) harmony. I think doing it via the link here is easier.

Of course, if you happen to be on facebook but not connected to any of us there, you are still very welcome to join in the fun at the launch party. You can register for the event ahead of time, here.

26.8.14

Book Tralier

While you eagerly await the virtual launch of SHE TOO, why not entertain yourselves watching our book trailer?


28.7.14

SHE TOO – an exciting collaboration

I've got a new book coming out! Not all by myself, though. WE have a new book coming out! Four of us: Helen Patrice, Leigh Spencer, Delaina Miller and me. Four friends, four poets, "four voices in (almost) harmony" as our subtitle says.



How did that come about? Thisaway:
























Back in 1988 Helen read my poem "Universe Cat" and sent me a fan letter.  It was my first ever, and included a cat poem of her own. Touched, I replied. Shortly afterwards I met her at a writers' gathering. and that was the start of a long friendship. By now we have total permission to call each other on our shit, insult each other outrageously, demand to know intimate details of what's going on with each other (and get answered honestly), and request — and receive — all kinds of help or rescue at a moment's notice.

In 2008 Leigh and Delaina both attended a workshop at the University of Arizona and, as Leigh tells it, bonded afterwards over a 99 cent bean and cheese burrito the size of a football. That both were poets and feminists no doubt helped.

In 2009 Leigh and I both participated in one of the September poem-a-day challenges John Hewitt used to run at his Writers' Resource Centre website. I was enraptured by her writing, and at one point felt moved to hunt her up on facebook and make a friend request, accompanied by the message, 'I love a woman who isn't afraid to say "fuck" in a poem'. Then John Hewitt started the facebook group Free Verse for Fun and made both Leigh and me co-administrators.

Helen asked if I knew any online poetry groups worth joining, so I added her to that one. She agreed that the members are the real deal as poets, not the "bunch of wankers" she'd found elsewhere, and entered in with cries of relief. And at some point Delaina joined too, and we started taking notice of her words. We discovered we're all very much on the same wavelength. We're mad about each other, and about each other's poetry.

John Hewitt doesn't do the September challenge any more, but there are various April challenges in conjunction with National Poetry Month in the US (which, online, has become international). This year, after we all participated, and shared the results on facebook as well, Delaina suggested we join forces to produce a book of our April poems for 2014.

So we did, and it's been a lot of work — which has taken place in great harmony, all contributing according to our strengths.

We're starting to get it up on various ebook sites and are planning the virtual launch, with all sorts of goodies to give away to those who buy the book then.

Stay tuned for date and details!

14.4.14

My Writing Prpcess – Blog Tour

Step one: Acknowledge the person and site that involved you in the blog tour.

That's the wonderful — and busy! — Canadian poet, Pearl Pirie, whom I met online years ago when we both responded to a month of poetry challenges at John Hewett’s site, then known as Writer’s Resource Centre and now an extremely useful archive. Pearl's own blog tour astounded me just now, when I read about all of her activities! (And that's just the literary ones.)

Step two: Answer the 4 questions below about your writing process:

1) What am I working on? 

There are two collaborative poetry collections. The main one is a year-long collaboration with three other poets, Aussies Jennie Fraine and Helen Patrice, and Brit Michele Brenton. It's a renshi, a Japanese form consisting of a series of linked poems. As we write them, we're posting them on a blog, "Poems by the Followers", and our intention is to turn them into a book. I am already enthralled by the way this is developing. Some of the last lines can be quite a challenge for the next person to take as a starting point!

The other is also a collaboration with Helen and Jennie. In 2013 we all did a series of moon poems spanning a lunar month. We recently decided to choose the best to combine in a book: Three Cycles of the Moon. It has been compiled. Currently we're looking at ways to self-publish it as a e-book, and are seeking the right cover illustration.

I'm also working on a memoir about the experience of widowhood (my husband died in September 2012). That too is taking the form of a blog at present: The Widowhood Chronicles. Again, the plan is to turn it into a book, perhaps covering the first two years, which people say is the usual period of readjustment. 

I have poems on this subject as well, naturally, and have created a chapbook covering the first six months, which I am getting ready to submit to a publisher.

And I’m putting together a chapbook of poems I wrote (some in collaboration with others) for a somonka challenge issued by Robert Lee Brewer of Poetic Asides. A somonka is a pair of tanka, one responding to the other. One by American Bruce Niedt and me was runner-up in the competition and has been published in a recent issue of Writer’s Digest Magazine.

I have a memoir about the spiritual/magickal aspects of my life, again in blog form so far, but I find it hideously confronting to put that intimately personal stuff out there. (I’ll tell you about my sex life, my financial situation, my politics, but….) So I am discontinuing that blog and will be writing the stuff somewhat more privately until I think it’s ready to become a book.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre? 

Only by being mine, in my voice and style. There's no huge, dramatic difference otherwise. I haven't reinvented the chapbook or the memoir.  And I write all kinds of poetry; I love to explore. 

The renshi project is unashamedly based on a similar book by four Hawaiian women poets, No Choice but to Follow(It's available in Kindle and paperback. Helen picked up a copy of the paperback on a trip to Hawaii and asked for collaborators for a similar project. I read the book while visiting her, and now own the Kindle edition.) Our imitation is meant as flattery, so our collection is likely to resemble more than it differs from theirs — except in some details, e.g. in our case three of us are Australians and one British, and we are not sponsored by a literary magazine as they were.

3) Why do I write what I do? 

Poetry's a vocation, the thing I can't not do. It began when I was a small child. I hope and trust it won't stop until I die. It sustains me. It is my comfort in sorrow and my companion in joy. Although I am on a low income, it makes me feel rich. 

I began the widowhood memoir simply as a blog, for emotional release, and in the hope it might be helpful to others. People found it beautiful and begged me to publish.

People have been asking for years that I write a memoir about my esoteric experiences. I can see that it might have value to seekers, and hope to slant it that way. Though I find it so difficult in practice, I’m not averse to the idea in principle. I think there must be lots of past lifetimes of needing to keep that knowledge secret, so perhaps I need to clear some blocks.

4) How does your writing process work? 

Poetry starts with a line or two in my head. That might turn out to be at the beginning or end, or somewhere in the middle. It might even end up being discarded — but it's important to write it down asap, or else I might lose the whole iceberg of which it's the tip. 

In recent years I have sometimes also written poems to prompts. They can trigger ideas and memories that might otherwise have lain dormant all my life.

I used to write by hand in notebooks I could carry with me everywhere. Nowadays I compose straight onto computer, and love to take my trusty iPad mini with me for writing as well as reading. (I uploaded the free Pages app.) I still carry a tiny notebook and a pen too, “just in case”. (In case of what? I haven’t yet specified that to myself.)

When I was the mother of young children (long ago), if I couldn't get straight to pen and paper when inspiration struck, I’d memorise the line or lines in my head and hold them there until I could. These days I trust my unconscious more, and allow things to percolate unattended if necessary. They’re there when I arrive at the page. Or the idea is, and it finds its words. Mind you, I try not to leave it too long before arriving at the page, or they can fade away and be lost.

A friend recently said she thought  my poems just flowed out spontaneously, without a lot of revision. I wasn't sure whether to be flattered or insulted. I do a great deal of tweaking and polishing at the point of creation. I do also come back to them after time has elapsed, and re-examine them.  I have been known to scrap things and do complete rewrites in other forms, styles, whatever. But it’s supposed to be good if one’s art appears effortless, so I decided to take my friend’s remark as a compliment — even while acquainting her with the facts! I thought she seemed a mite disappointed that her theory was wrong.

I do a lot of revising and editing of the prose, too.  

In prose, it is usually the idea that comes first and then I find the words — except for prose poetry, which I write occasionally; and unless I am journalling, which is a dump straight on to the page (and may or may not need a lot of cleaning up afterwards if I decide to make it public).

Trained by being a mum, and then by Natalie Goldberg, who suggested writing in cafés, I don’t need perfect peace and quiet in order to write. This is very useful!

Trained by poetry communities which issue prompts, and perhaps also by decades of experience, I can now toss off a creditable first draft quite quickly. Participation in these groups requires that the drafts go up on my blog straight away. I do come back later — sometimes a lot later — to revise and if necessary make changes, but most people see the first draft and probably don’t revisit. This is perhaps a good reason for submitting “finished” poems to literary magazines and anthologies (usually online nowadays) and for creating chapbooks.


Step 3: Who’s Next?  

I was asked to choose three other bloggers to whom to pass on the torch. At first I couldn’t find anyone who didn’t feel they were too busy. Then two people agreed: American poet and social media (content and design) professional Delaina Miller, and Aussie poet/muso/digital artist Phillip Barker (aka Soma).

If anyone else would like to jump in, please do! Email me for details.

(Cross-posted to my SnakyPoet blog)


Magic is science for which we haven't yet found the scientific explanation