My professional writing and editing career began in 1998 when I enrolled in RMIT’s Diploma of Professional Writing & Editing. I was passionate about words and determined to ‘make it’ as a writer. My first published work appeared in Visible Ink, RMIT’s literary anthology, in 1999. While there, I also co-founded a student-run publishing group/collaborative with the aim of producing a yearly anthology of students’ work. The collective was called ‘Rant’ and the project resulted in two successful collections, RANThology and RANTevision.
I also began freelancing as an editor and book designer for the vanity press industry. I worked with first-time authors to fine-tune and publish their manuscripts. That same year, I wrote a K2 level children’s education title called Sea Jellies. The book was originally published by Barrie Publishing. The title was then acquired by several different publishers including Pearson. It is still in print and being distributed to schools throughout the USA (re-titled Jellyfish).
After graduating the Professional Writing & Editing course, I enrolled in RMIT’s Advanced Diploma of Professional Screenwriting. In 2002, my first short film, The Spider and the Fly... A Fable, was produced by an independent production company. It screened at several Australian festivals including the prestigious St Kilda Film Festival. I also began work on two feature-length screenplays. The first was a comedy called baggage which was a Top 50 finalist in the Australian version of Project Greenlight. I didn’t win the competition; however, in 2009, I was invited to Plume & Pellicule in Switzerland to workshop baggage with filmmakers and producers from Cuba, the USA, France, Germany, Spain, and the UK. The second feature film project was a biopic about Jean Lee, the last woman hanged in Australia. The unproduced screenplay was performed as a rehearsed reading at The Loft, at Chapel off Chapel, and at the Kelvin Club, a private members club in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. Jean Lee and baggage were both optioned by local producers, but sadly neither were realised as screen projects.
Later in 2009, I was invited to be one of several writers on a micro-budget feature-length horror film called Don’t Fall Asleep. Needless to say, the project required a lot of give and take; however, three drafts of the screenplay later and the script was declared ready. The film went into production and shooting was completed on schedule. It was ultimately distributed in the USA via digital download. It was an extraordinary experience that gave me the insight and courage to write and produce my own micro-budget feature-length movie, Killervision. In 2010, Killervision, a psychological thriller/horror went into production in the northern suburbs of Melbourne. It is currently being distributed exclusively in the USA and Canada by Maxim Media via DVD and digital download.
After Killervision, I began a collaborative partnership with Voyage Media, a film packaging company based in California. Voyage optioned two of my feature film scripts, a tentpole action sci-fi and a psychological thriller. While in Los Angles, I pitched my projects to several producers and production companies including the Head of Development at Constantin Film (Resident Evil series, The Mortal Instruments, Fantastic Four). Ultimately, my projects weren't in line with Constantin’s slate as their respective budgets were under $60 M. However, I was invited to submit further projects. As for Voyage Media, they not only optioned my projects, but offered me the opportunity to work with them. During that very exciting time, I wrote treatments, assessed manuscripts for their suitability for adaptation into screen projects (film, TV, web), and wrote feature-length script adaptations.
In 2014, my two business partners and I founded a boutique manuscript development and publishing business. We published several novels and children’s story book apps.
Regrettably, one of the partners was unexpectedly forced to pull out of the enterprise while it was still in its infancy. His contribution to the business was pivotal and attempts to find a new partner were unsuccessful. Consequently, that forced my remaining partner and I to reassess the business’s viability. Ultimately, we decided to take down our shingle and move on.
It was around this time that I completed my Master's Degree (Creative Writing). I also opened a new business as a freelance editor, and began work on my first novel. Set in St Kilda in the early 1980s, the novel is an ethnographic/autoethnographic story about a rock band attempting to make a name for themselves in the music business. Raw and unapologetic, the twenty-something-year-old main character is a heroin addict and a closet homosexual. One of my lecturers commented that the “…novel has a great deal of potential and is quite beautifully written”. I hope to finish it later this year.
Right now, I’m based in Melbourne, Australia where I teach creative writing at Victoria University.