While Knitting and Other Stories was published before my time at Margaret River Press, I’ve long been familiar with the work of Jacqueline Wright. It was a pleasure, therefore, to catch up with her via that magnificent mode of communication known as email. Not surprisingly, Jacqueline was informative, and helpful, and pretty much the best thing since cheese scones…
Since being published in Knitting and Other Stories, I’ve managed to check off the top five stressful situations in life. I separated from my long-term partner, moved house and changed career paths. Then my youngest became a teenager and my parents got old really quickly. Perfect writing content and I milked it for all it was worth. While writing a second novel is way out of my time jurisdiction, I’ve still managed to publish some short pieces – stories, essays and my, new best friend, Creative Non-fiction. Filling in the fact-gaps with fiction and making it up as I go along is right up my ally. Although, I still have a lot to learn with this snarly genre.
Career-wise, the move from editor at Magabala Books, an independent Indigenous publishing house, to ABC Open Producer has entailed a steep learning curve in video making and editing, but essentially it’s just another way of telling stories. Except that it is “a dance between words, vision and sound,” as another Open Producer nicely put it. It also gives me a chance to listen to other people’s stories.
I am lucky enough to live in a spectacular place with a living library of people who enjoy telling and sharing their stories in all kinds of ways. Where am I based? In Broome but I’m working with people in the east and west Kimberley, an area around about the size of Spain with just six regional towns in it.
Jacqueline Wright has a creative arts doctorate from Curtin University where she is an Adjunct Fellow. Her first novel, Red Dirt Talking, won the 2010 TAG Hungerford Award and was longlisted for the 2013 Miles Franklin. She has since published short stories and creative non-fiction pieces in Knitting and Other Stories (MRP), Kimberley Stories, Summer Lovin’, Purple Prose (FP), Looking West (Griffith Review) and Westerly 61.1 (UWA Press). Jacqueline currently works as ABC Kimberley’s Open Producer.