Tag Archives: video

My conversation with Kate Grenville about her novel – A Room Made of Leaves.

While I am waiting for the publication day for A Letter to Layla: Travels to our Deep Past and Near Future (Text Publishing) on September 29th, 2020, I am enjoying events like this one above where I interviewed the excellent Australian writer Kate Grenville on her new novel A Room Made of Leaves (Text Publishing) […]

Video interview with Sir Simon Schama, Melbourne May 2nd, 2019.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Sir Simon Schama ( @simon_schama ) on May 2nd 2019 at the Atheneum Theatre in Melbourne when he was a guest of the Wheeler Centre for their Mayhem series. You’ll find the link to the event below.  Sir Simon Schama is University Professor of Art History and History […]

Writing in Dark Territory: a conversation with Helen Garner and Anne Manne

In 2016 I moderated this conversation with writers Helen Garner (This House of Grief) and Anne Manne (Narcissism) . They  have written on some of the darkest aspects of the human experience: murder, violence against children, and the contemporary culture of narcissism. In conversation with me for La Trobe University’s Ideas and Society program, they […]

What do scientists have on their bookshelves? Reading on Vocation @ The Wheeler Centre

I’m currently putting the finishing touches to my new book Bloodhound: searching for my father  (Text) to be published on May 1st, so I haven’t been able to blog much. But here’s a blast from the recent past – In this instalment of Reading on Vocation, I introduce the reading habits and histories of three noted scientists […]

A conversation with Robert Dessaix

I can’t tell you how how pleased I was to speak recently to  Robert Dessaix at Melbourne’s Wheeler Centre. It’s not just that his new book, What Days are for, is perfect. And it’s not just that his voice is singular – his knowledge, his wisdom, his sense of humour, his sharpness, his candour, his ways with […]

The Monthly Book – November 2014, Michel Faber’s The Book of Strange New Things

This month’s Monthly Book should keep you intrigued for the summer – it’s a novel of love and grief, a dystopian travelogue, a triumph of imaginative fiction with interests in story, language, the body, the environment and the power of belief. My interview with Michel Faber and the transcript appears below. Michel Faber was born in […]

Richard Flanagan wins Man Booker Prize!

The Narrow Road to the Deep North is Richard Flanagan’s wonderful novel which has just won this year’s Man Booker Prize! You can watch my interview with Richard for The Monthly Book  here or read the transcript below: Heroism, goodness, mateship, war, enmity, class, memory, self-delusion, passion, guilt, honour and loyalty – these are just some […]

James Wood in the New Yorker discovers Elizabeth Harrower

Congratulations to Elizabeth Harrower for the wonderful feature on her work from James Wood in the New Yorker magazine this week. Here’s our conversation for The Monthly Book from October 2013. And below, my introduction to her wonderful novel The Catherine Wheel, just republished by Text in their Classics series. Playing with Fire by Ramona […]

The Monthly Book for October – Erik Jensen’s Acute Misfortune: The Life and Death of Adam Cullen

This month’s Monthly Book is Erik Jensen’s Acute Misfortune: The life and death of Adam Cullen (Black Inc.). You’ll find an interview with him here, and the transcript below. This is Jensen’s first book, a finely written account of the self-destructive, charismatic Australian painter who won the Archibald Prize for portraiture in 2000 and died […]

The Monthly Book – September 2014 – Helen Garner’s This House of Grief

  The Monthly Book for September is master storyteller Helen Garner’s new non-fiction work: the devastating, utterly compelling This House of Grief (Text Publishing). Here’s my interview with Helen Garner conducted at the Opening night event of the Melbourne Writers Festival. (The transcript appears below.) Helen Garner begins This House of Grief in a time-honoured way, […]