Cottage news, awards and competitions (for you), film news and a studio that requires imagination

Blog time.

Go, Jen, go.


The hunt is over! We bought a cottage in the country!  OMG! This Easter we got ten substandard Easter Eggs and a 1930s cottage with two big trees, a wasp nest and a headless statue.

Exhibit A:


We move in winter. Lots of time to declutter — the house, our brains and possibly our hearts…

Hand me a paper bag. Melbourne, I will miss you!


But I’ll only be ninety minutes up the road.

Deep breaths.

And there’s so much to look forward to.

Gum boots. Cakes. Visitors.

A puppy. A garden.

A wood fire.

And last but not least, a new studio! (Hopefully in my lifetime.)

IMG_4671 2

Because the house is not officially ours yet (there are lots of letters to type, coins to count and promises to make)  it would be rude of me to post pics. So here’s an ambiguous one. Inside my new studio.

Yerp. It’s a garage.

But what a garage!

There’ll be space to write and draw and record creative writing videos for the duckies. All in one space. Separate from the house. No more tripping over extension leads and tripods and half-written books and overturned art trolleys. A place for everything, and EVERYONE in their place. Fit for a Queen.

I saw a video with Shaun Tan recently. He was so happy to finally have a studio. He referred to all the years spent working in the front bedroom of rented houses. I laughed out loud. So true. (Why, this very blog and most of my books are brought to you from the front bedroom of a rented house.)


Speaking of Shaun Tan (nice segue, Jen), just before Easter I had a meeting with the Truly Tan film peoples. Nice peoples. Funny peoples. In case you missed it (ha!), Truly Tan has been optioned for a live action film. The producer is Sophie Byrne from Passion Pictures. Sophie produced Shaun Tan’s academy award winning short film, The Lost Thing.

Film Meeting Upshot: the Truly Tan film is now in the outlining stage. This could go on. FOR. EVER. But I still reckon it’s exciting. And so do the Pictures people. More as this unfolds.



Together with Team Duck we’re working on the inaugural Scribbles Creative Writing Competition/Awards. The comp is for Scribbles participants only and first prize is, um, ME!

Yep, three lucky winners will get a written manuscript assessment from me, a track changes edit from me, plus a one hour Skype session with me to discuss their work and their creative journey. When too much Jen is barely enough!

The comp will be in October 2018 and there’ll be Highly Commended awards, too, (as well as Highly Commended judges) and all sorts of other Good Stuff. But I have to stress, you must be in Scribbles to enter.

Do you know about Scribbles? If not, CLICK HERE. You should join us, you’ll learn heaps! Plus, all the recorded calls from the recent Live Round (that six hours of extra footage!) are now in the Bonus Treasure module.

If you’re on my mailing list,  I’ll keep you updated with the Scribbles competition details as they unfold.  CLICK HERE to join my mailing list. Remember, following the blog is not the same as being on the mailing list!

Meantime, what else?

I’ve been writing. And drawing. And collaging. And playing with several new characters including one called Elsie True who is not new at all. She’s been with me for years. But lately she’s demanding her fifteen minutes.


Last week, I was featured author on the fabulous Writing and Wellness blog. A brilliant resource, a great blog to follow. You can read my piece (and get permission to eat chocolate) HERE.


I think that’s about enough, don’t you?

Thank you for sticking with me. You’re a star.

Stay well. Stay creative.

Chat again soon!

Jen Signature_web

PS Here’s a pretty pic from inside the cottage. I know. I can’t help myself! 😉


7 Replies to “Cottage news, awards and competitions (for you), film news and a studio that requires imagination”

  1. Just the word ‘cottage’ gets me excited. Wowee, this is all fantastic, Jen. Can’t wait to see more pics and having your own space will be awesome! And your film, well that’s just super exciting.

    1. Thanks, Kaye. And very exciting about your new book! Please keep us posted in the Pond, it really looks beautiful. Such a profound story. Best wishes.

  2. Jen, this all sounds immensely exciting.

    Have very limited time, can’t read properly, can’t write properly, little people could demand attention at any time – apologies if this is obvious – is there a specific starting time for each round of ‘Scribbles’ or do you do it at anytime? I’m currently completely a Faber course and would like to wait until mid year before I start Scribbles – would this work?

    Thanks so much!

    1. You can join whenever you’re ready, Angela. Scribbles is a self-paced course and is bound to augment what you’re covering in Faber. See you then! Jx

  3. Oh a cottage in the country. Perfect! Especially one with a headless statue. (I have a similar one…the statue not the cottage.) I am so excited to see photos when you can share and extremely pumped about the competition in October. Lovely post. Cheers-

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