Strawberries in the Desert

Story telling from Australia

Mentors and teachers

With inspirational teacher Rae Luckie

With inspirational teacher Rae Luckie at Berry CWA

Budding writers need encouragement – masses of it. Insecurity goes with the territory of long hours spent alone, scribbling away without anyone telling you it’s time well spent. So often, the only voice you hear is a chattering monkey on your shoulder – or in my case embedded deep in my head like an undercover agent – telling you what rubbish you’re producing and wondering why you’re bothering to spend such a long time producing it. Other writers are surely far more productive, more creative, more interesting… you get the idea.

When I was living in Broken Hill a creative writing teacher called Rae Luckie came to town, and the library advertised her workshop. At that stage I’d been trying to write my first book, Dream Wheeler, for three years. I’d sent draft manuscripts to endless publishers and agents without success and I was on the point of giving up. I didn’t see how a one-day workshop was going to help me produce anything when I’d flogged myself to the point of miserable exhaustion after three years, but then again why not attend? What harm could it do?

Rae’s workshop was so inspirational – and equally important so relaxing – that magic happened. I’d been lugging around a battering ram, slamming it against closed doors, and Rae simply offered me a key to unlock the door. I’d love to tell you how she did it but I can’t, I only know that magic happened that day and the words began to flow. I revised the manuscript, sent it out again and the rest, as they say, is history.

We all need  teachers and mentors and I will always be grateful for Rae Luckie’s class in the Broken Hill library, and I also know I would never have got this far without Clyde’s on-going support and encouragement.

Rae is travelling to northern NSW and Queensland over the next three months, offering workshops and mentoring to budding writers. You can find out more here.

Clyde and Rae were both at the CWA talk in Berry on Saturday, as were other friends like Kate and Inga and Gaye who came to offer support, and I am hugely grateful to them all.

Rae blogged about the talk and she’s such a marvellous writer herself, as well as a great teacher, that I will simply leave you to enjoy her post….


4 comments on “Mentors and teachers

  1. Jo
    June 15, 2015

    If only she would come to Western Australia………we are almost another country over here! xx


  2. rthepotter
    June 15, 2015

    How fortunate to meet the right person at the right time!


    • debhuntwasinbrokenhill
      June 16, 2015

      I sometimes wonder if the ‘right’ person appears in our lives many times – in any number of ways, to suit all sorts of situations – until the point when we are finally ready to notice them. Maybe I had to slow down long enough to notice 🙂


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This entry was posted on June 15, 2015 by and tagged , , , , , .

I'm a writer based in Australia with a passion for gardening, remote places and people with a story to tell.

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