Excited? The Sydney Writers' Festival is on!

The Sydney Writers' Festival looks insanely awesome this year!! Are you going to be there?

There are the likes of Barack Obama's Chief Digital Strategist, Anne Summers, Ruby Wax, Slam Poetry... ahhhh! I am so excited!

Are you going to be there? Who are you excited to see??

If you are free and around, maybe you can pop by and check out lil ol' me talking about big ol' issues like Women and Power and a "young lady's survival guide to life on the rigs"...

Should be fun ;)



Exciting News – Being Published!

  Hi all! Just wanting to share some exciting news with you all.  I have the amazing fortune to be a contributor in the Griffith Review’s awesome 40th Edition of Women and Power!  It will be available in late April.


The blurb for the edition is as such:

The empowerment of women it is one of the most remarkable revolutions of the past century. But like all good revolutions it is still not settled.

In a generation women have taken control of their economic fate, risen to the most powerful political positions in the land and climbed to the top of the corporate ladder. Just when it seemed there was general acceptance of this change, a misogynist backlash persists.

The impact of this revolution extends across the whole society – from homes to schools, politics to the military, marriage to media – challenging long held verities.

In Women & Power, Griffith REVIEW will bring an international perspective to these dilemmas, exploring the changing relationship between women and power in public and private spheres, here and abroad.

Have social changes caught up with economic changes? Are children paying a price for the rise of the two-income household? Can women have it all? Does it matter whether Julia Gillard's fruit bowl is empty or full?

Women & Power will bring provocative and insightful perspectives on these questions. The empowerment of women was one of the great changes of the past 50 years, handling its consequences remains a pressing challenge.


The piece is a short memoir about my life so far on the rigs… it comes out in late April! I will also be at the Sydney Writers Festival speaking on this, so quite excited indeed at the opportunities, Alhamdulilah!

The Griffith Review, edited by my amazing friend and mentor Julianne Shultz…

celebrates good writing and promotes public debate. It steps back from the issues of the day and gives writers the space to grow on the page.

Essays reflect on the underlying significance of events and trends, explain the details that get lost in the news and examine the unintended consequences of public policy.

I am really excited about contributing to this wonderful edition, so stay tuned – and maybe even get the edition!

Selfish, or Noble? On Our Personal Legacies


I used to believe that being forgotten was the worst fate that could befall me. However, I have come to accept not only my mortality, but my insignificance in the story of our universe.


This is not to say that we are all ‘insignificant as individuals’, as we are extremely important to those who love us and the community we are a part of; to deny this would be unfair. In fact, it would be wasteful of the gift of our lives if we disregarded our importance as people and individuals.

However, notions of grandeur and of everlasting importance are fanciful and ultimately selfish, are they not? Think about the thousands of years of humankind and the billions of people who have gone before us, who each had stories; lives, loves, struggles and triumphs…how many of those have been remembered? How many empires, on the other hand, have fallen due to an individual’s obsession with power and immortality?

Why do we feel like we need to be remembered?

On the other hand though, shouldn’t we strive to create and leave a legacy?

Wanting to be remembered is one thing, leaving a legacy is quite another.

One is about the individual, craving attention and validation of their existence.  The other is selfless, about leaving the world a better place than when we joined.

It is up to you to decide what your legacy will be.  Utilise that gift, and shape one that you are proud of.


*Source of pictures? Tumblr.

What do you do when the power goes out?

I'd just gotten back from working on the rigs, looking forward to a few days off with fast internet, unlimited downloads, nice cool weather, catch ups with friends and loads of sleep.

Exhausted, I collapsed into a deep sleep a few minutes before midnight, just after I arrived home.

On awakening, I was vaguely disconcerted by the stillness of the morning, but disregarded it as I sat up in my bed and began checking my social feeds, as I did every morning.  My phone's battery was at 80%.  Odd, I thought.  I was sure I left it charging...

It wasn't until I padded downstairs and found the family at the dining table did it dawn - the power had been cut!  Ah, this couldn't last for long, surely! We lived in Australia after all...


The first day of having no power (on holidays) wasn't terrible.   I took the opportunity to catch up on some reading and light housework...I still had charge on my phone and didn't have the good sense to conserve it, so texting and surfing Facebook was all go.

The first night, exciting.  We set up candles, told stories, ate the leftovers in the fridge and slept early.  It was a fun adventure, but I looked forward to being able to waking up to power.  The high voltage fault would be repaired in the morning, they said.


After 36 hours, the reality of the situation begins to sink in and you begin to realise how much you depend on electricity.

Automatically turning on lights as you walk into a dark room, followed by the brief moment of confusion before you remember and use the torch.

Planning to organise the cupboard and making a "washing" pile, and an "ironing" pile...before you realise you can't do either of those easily without the good ol' spark.

I am forced to scam power from the local shops.

"Can I charge my phone here?".  I feel dirty.


The silence.

No radio, no refrigerator hum and by this stage, no iPod or phone...

It broached on almost being uncomfortably quiet.  Are we scared of silence?

I felt my thoughts clamouring, grasping at the silence, in an attempt to fill the void.  Is this the normal state of affairs, usually subdued and suppressed by the constant audio-visual stimuli we expose ourselves to?  I wondered...

I take the time for extra prayers.


Day three.

Awake, again.  I switch my phone on.

20% battery remaining.  Darn.

"Would you like to connect to the wireless network?" the phone alert demands attention.

No, no, no...

I paused.  The modem was working!

I run downstairs and check the clocks.  The hum of the refrigerator is back.

I breathe a sigh of relief, force the questions about energy dependence from my mind.  Time to charge my phone, check my emails, watch the news...


Friends commiserated with an element of wistfulness.  It must have been great to take time off technology!

It was, to an extent.

How do we place being dependent on electricity? I didn't like to think that I couldn't live without it - and clearly, can survive without it without being overly bored or concerned...just uncomfortable?

If however, in this day and age, electricity is such an integral part of our lives, how important is it that we live without it? Is it a skill worth acquiring?

Perhaps we should become more comfortable with silence.  After all, when else are we forced to face our thoughts, without competing stimuli?