I first sent a submission to Westerly last century. It was 1999, and it was a poem about leaving home to move to Perth for uni. It came back rejected with a single word circled – I’d used “obstinately” instead of “ostensibly”. I felt a little mortified. There’s no room for getting a word wrong in poetry. (It wasn’t the only reason for its rejection, I’m sure.) Since then, I’ve racked up a couple more rejections – I think two short stories, one of which nearly made it. And now sixteen years later in a third genre – that of the biographical essay – I have finally appeared in the pages of Westerly. It’s the story of Katharine Susannah Prichard’s childhood, and it’s adapted from chapter two of my PhD. I’ve written about it over on my biographer blog.

A Biographer in Perth

Source: Westerly 60:2 – Westerly

My biography of the early years of Katharine Susannah Prichard is a couple of years from completion, but a modified version of chapter two has just been published in Westerly 60.2. My essay is called “‘The memory of a storm’: The Wild Oats of Han and the childhood of Katharine Susannah Prichard, 1887 to 1895.”

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