I’m a widely published travel and food writer, prolific guidebook author and successful blogger. See About Me for more details on my writing career, publications I’ve written for, guidebooks I’ve authored, and the destinations where I have expertise and experience. If you’re an editor who’d like to commission me, please email or get in touch via my Contacts page.
I’ve been writing professionally since 1987 and over those many years (eek, decades!) have written features, film scripts, two teen fiction novels, media releases, research reports, speeches, courses, presentations, you name it. If you’d like me to create content for your publication, website, blog, or social media channels, or develop a content strategy for your business or organisation, feel free to email me with ideas or a proposal.
Learn from me
I’ve been teaching since the mid 1990s when I was invited to speak about low-budget filmmaking following the premiere of our feature film, Come By Chance, Australia’s lowest budget film at the time. I soon found myself writing courses and teaching classes in film history, scriptwriting, directing and producing for the International Screen Academy, Sydney Community College, and WEA in Sydney, which I did for some years.
But it was a transformational experience in South America in 1997 when I serendipitously became involved in a participatory filmmaking project, teaching documentary video making to women in shanty towns in Rio and Lima that really sparked a passion and inspired a move into full-time teaching.
A year later I was hired to start a film programme at a women’s college in Abu Dhabi, where I found myself teaching young Emirati women how to write, produce and direct for film, television and multimedia. My students were the first in the UAE to make films (on digital), which screened at overseas festivals and won awards. We also held the first film festival at Abu Dhabi Cultural Foundation in 1999.
During my time in the UAE, first as faculty in Abu Dhabi, and later managing the communications programme at the Dubai women’s college, I was responsible for the creative development and success of almost a thousand young women. Over eight years, I taught dozens of classes in writing and production; edited and assessed hundreds of stories, scripts and films; wrote a dozen courses, including scores of lectures and course notes; and was responsible for the creation of two Bachelor’s degrees.
I’m now drawing on that abundant experience in education to offer a range of creative learning experiences for aspiring writers:
Workshops on Travel Writing and Food Writing
I’ll soon be announcing short workshops on travel writing and food writing which I’ll be holding in conjunction with a Siem Reap based tour company, cooking school, and street food operator. These will consist of short, punchy classes crammed with tips and hands-on workshops, crafted around enriching tours and culinary experiences that will serve as the inspiration and material for your writing. Watch this space!
Travel Writing and Photography Tours
My photographer husband Terence Carter and I hosted our first culinary travel writing and photography tour in Cambodia in May this year in partnership with Backyard Travel. We are will be holding a Vietnam tour with Backyard Travel in late 2016, however, in the meantime, we will be hosting a Cambodia culinary tour with an optional travel writing and photography component, which will top and tail the trip, in collaboration with a Siem Reap-based travel company in early 2016. More details coming very soon.
In addition, we are also offering specialised culinary tours, crafted with chefs, restaurateurs, food writers, and foodies in mind. See our Travel Services page for details.
Travel Writing and Food Writing Retreats
As we found with our tour in May, as wonderful as they can be, tours can also be exhausting due to the pace and time spent travelling and tiredness is not conducive to writing. For aspiring writers who prefer to stay in one place and stay focused on the writing, I’ll be offering travel and food writing retreats in partnership with River Garden. These will incorporate many of the enriching experiences from our tours, however, the pace will be slower, there will be longer periods set aside for writing, and we will be based in one place, the lovely River Garden on the banks of Siem Reap River. Again, watch this space for dates.
Travel and Food Photography
Why would I not draw on the expertise of my seriously talented photographer husband Terence Carter whose beautiful images have been published everywhere from National Geographic Traveller to Delicious magazine? Terence will offer photography workshops and be available to provide support and advice during my workshops, tours and retreats.