My Writing Journey

Renee Hammond Author

Back to where it began…

As a child I was a prolific storyteller, creating make believe worlds and writing scripts for anyone who was willing to act them out with me…aka, my sister–thank you for always playing the role of my leading man!

I kept a diary, and wrote short stories, mostly horror, as Stephen King was my hero and ‘I was going to write like him one day’! Haha, expectations I clearly didn’t understand.

Reading always topped my list of favourite things to do–some things never change. As a teenager, Francine Pascal’s ‘Caitlin’ series led me down a new path, to romance. Her books influenced me so much, I even named my eldest daughter after her heroine. From there I read all of my mum’s Danielle Steel books, a collection she has since passed on to me. And, then I discovered Nora Roberts. If there was anyone on the planet I could go out to lunch with, Nora Roberts would be the one. I am yet to read a book she’s written that doesn’t leave me inspired to write better than my current best.

After having my second child I dedicated time to my writing again. At that stage, witchy young adult novels were rare, so I focused on creating a series for teens. Everything down to merchandise and a marketing plan was set to go when Harry Potter became a hit. For fear of being seen as jumping on the bandwagon–which I now know is not possible unless you happen to have tens of thousands of typed and edited words hanging around on your computer–I discarded my project, believing there were too many others doing it better than me.

Two more children, a university degree and life kept me busy, until I stumbled upon the KSP Writers’ Centre. I phoned on a number of occasions, and frequently visited the website for information, but the idea of stepping onto the premises freaked me out…what if I was the worst writer there?

A six week writing course at TAFE, taught by Shane McCauley, gave me the confidence I needed to overcome that hurdle. End of February 2011 I signed up as a member of KSP, the oldest writing centre of its kind in Australia, and by October I became Chairperson. A role I filled for three and a half years.

All things books now consumes most of my life, and I love it.

I’ll share more of My Writing Journey soon, but in the meantime, feel free to tell me yours. I love to hear how others came to walk the writers path.

Renee x


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