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Tag: Kapooka Tragedy

May 24, 2017

Today is the anniversary of the Kapooka Tragedy: 21 May 1945.
It took me 5 years to research and write this book. I am grateful to all those who shared with me their experiences, from whom learned so much, and because of whom there is something of a literary memorial to these men and the grief that is still felt.
Writing the book has left its mark on me. Today, I feel as though these men are part of my extended family.

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February 14, 2016

I have spent two weeks trying to find the photograph I wanted to accompany this post. If it turns up now, I will post it later. C’est le vie.

Following along the theme of Remembrance …

Article_KT – Personal Memorials

January 18, 2016

Hi. Next in the series of posts about the book is a short one, following on from the reflections on personal grief.

Have a good day.

Article_KT – National Mourning

January 11, 2016

Hi. A belated welcome to the New Year to you. Today feels like I have come back to work after a holiday – a bit rusty and reluctant, but already starting to fire up. The link is to a part of the draft that was cut from the final manuscript. Writing about a subject brings that subject close to me; I interact with it, get to know it, and it usually becomes personal. Writing ‘The Kapooka Tragedy’, reconnected me with my own grief.

Article_KT – Personal Grief

December 14, 2015

At the library readings, someone usually asks me what my connection with the Kapooka Tragedy is, whether one of my relatives was in or near the dugout. It is a question about motivation. It is a question I spent much time internally poring over in the throes of trying to work out a workable approach to the book.   This article, Article_KT – Why Me , is a window on my thinking in 2012/13. It is an excerpt from my last assignment for the Masters.

Have a good day.


December 6, 2015

Hi. This is the first of a series of articles backgrounding the writing of The Kapooka Tragedy. Some of this material comes from the initial drafts of the book; some comes from assignments I did to complete my Masters degree. Some I just wrote for this. The aim is to illuminate some of my writing process.

The first article is a detailed look at my motivations. The draft for this article came out of early attempts to both orientate the reader and explain why the work is important to me. At this point, I had decided against writing fiction and was struggling to create an approach that would make sense and draw readers in. The thread for the book was going to be my own journey into the history.

Follow this link: Article – Why Did I Write About This?

November 25, 2015

WAGGA LAUNCH – Monday, 9 November

Success! (See previous post.)

REMEMBRANCE VILLAGE – Wagga Wagga – Thursday, 12 November, 10.00 am:

RV is a retirement home run by the RSL and situated behind The Haven in Bourke Street. Ros Brown gathered up ten or so residents to hear me talk about the book. This was wildly different to the launch, and to every other reading on the trip. Some couldn’t hear well, others couldn’t see well, and couldn’t remember too well. But we enjoyed ourselves all the same. Without exception they could recall events from WWII. There was much nodding and the occasional question.  read more …

November 24, 2015


These are the upcoming dates for Tasmanian readings from The Kapooka Tragedy: remembering 21 May 1945read more …

November 14, 2015

The launch was a terrific event. We had about 40 folk in the room, and a diverse gathering it was – an AWAS from the base that day, Kath Weale, two young members of the crowd that lined the streets for the funeral, Evelyn Patterson and Dick Bostock, members of Wagga’s RSL Sub-branch and Historical Society, a member of the team that constructed the memorial, Damian Strauss, two of Jack Nixon’s nieces, locals, my wife, artists, historians and friends.

I was also able to publicly and personally thank Zita (DDD) and Maris (Textiles Anyone) for their efforts in bringing the book to print.  read more …

October 24, 2015

Here they are – aren’t they looking lovely?


All dressed up by Maris Herr of Textiles Anyone (many thanks) and ready for their coming out in Wagga on 9 November.  read more …