ON WRITING

“It’s very easy to quit during the first ten years of writing. Nobody cares whether you write or not, and it’s very hard to write when nobody cares one way or the other. You can’t get fired if you don’t write, and most of the time you don’t get rewarded if you do. But don’t quit.” Andre Dubus

JOIN YOLANDA RENEE ON HER BLOG TOUR!

Thursday, 10 November 2016

My life is a movable feast--in pictures. From Brisbane to Peregian Beach. Full time beach living, here I come!

Hello there!

Well, I don't know if anyone out there is blogging at the moment after the BIG NEWS of the AMERICAN ELECTION, but I'll try for some normalcy here. I spent the day glued to CNN and need some light relief, so decided I'd share some pics with you, nothing too deep and meaningful.

Some of you may have picked up that I've been living a split life for several years -- half a week in Brisbane teaching at the State Library of Queensland, living in an 1880's heritage-listed property, and half a week up at the beach, 100 kilometers (62 miles away) to a house we built and moved into on the night of the New Millenium...gah! 16 years ago!

As I say goodbye to permanent living in Brisbane, I took a few photographs to mark the move, and rattled around in my files for some more...

I'm grateful for Brisbane, a beautiful, friendly, laid-back city (hello Lynda Young!)

The sun sets on my Brisbane sojourn!The State Library in the right hand corner.

Inside the State Library. My Library Cafe on right. Also a great bookshop.

View across the river to the city from my teaching room where I tutored students one-on-one.
Favourite muffin and coffee in the Library Cafe
Awesome walkways which are dripping with red bougainvilla each summer...at the South Bank

Each Remembrance Day, the Story Bridge is festooned with red poppies
My writers group working on characterisation at the Brisbane Markets
The Brisbane Writers Festival is held at the State Library. Author friend Charmaine Clancy and I liked to relax and have a drink after attending classes



Always media students acting out on the banks of the Brisbane River
Our Heritage Unit in West End. On the deck when Nas and Ragesh Dean came to stay

They built a huge artificial beach at South Bank many years ago. It's permanent. Well used on those balmy days and nights in summer

The beach house needed extensive renovations as we've had it vacant for a time, rented it out as a holiday home and used it as a bolt hole occasionally, so the wear and tear was showing. It's a big house, so the renos have taken awhile--2 brand-new kitchen makeovers (upstairs and downstairs -- where we have made a private apartment for one of our daughters and which will become a Writers Retreat when she moves out), a new ensuite in a large downstairs bedroom, and the most exciting part--cutting off a little of the huge lounge/dining room for my own private writing room.

View of the sunrise over the Pacific Ocean from my writing room every morning. Inspired? I should think so...
We've been doing the painting ourselves, and finally finished the upstairs a couple of days ago. That's all we'll get done before Christmas.

On the beach at Noosa on the Sunshine Coast
Fishing at Peregian Beach at sunset
Chilling on the beach at Noosa - hmm - melanoma territory!
Peregian Beach's Baked Poetry Cafe's special breed of iced coffee. They even make the ice cream in house. Never tasted better and that's saying something! 
The inside of our beach house before renovations. The walls are now grey. More pics in future as Michael di Gesu has been begging!
My favourite spot at the beach house--sofa bed on the deck to read and think while I watch the whales frolic. They've been awesome this season!

I hope you enjoyed my nostalgic journey through Brisbane and onto Peregian Beach. We'll be renting out the Brisbane unit. Can't bear to part with all that rustic gorgeousness yet! And I've kept a few students who I'll be tutoring online and occasionally meeting up with through 2017.


  • How about you? Are you a beach or a city person?
  • What's been your most momentous move/career change so far?
As always, thanks for visiting my blog. I'll just go have a good cry now! And not just because there's a brand new MOST POWERFUL MAN IN THE WORLD. 








59 comments:

  1. Your timing is terrible! :P
    Love all the pics, though. So many places I've yet to discover in Brisbane. I do love South Bank. Originally we were looking for places to stay closer to there, but Kangaroo Point won us over.

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    1. Yeah, timing sucks, doesn't it? There's so much to discover in Brisbane. Not as much as Sydney, for sure, but it's a wonderful little town, er, city, with suburbs that have a certain flavour, depending what you're looking for...The South Bank is one of my favourite hangouts. I'm sure you'll feel the same when you get a chance to explore. And if you haven't already, catch the City Cat day and night. Beautiful!

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    2. Lynda, you've got to let Denise show you all the old/second-hand bookshops and the small retro cafes. I had amazing time when she took me around.

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    3. Nas, I definitely will! I found in South Brisbane. It had such a wonderful atmosphere.

      Denise, I think Brisbane is holding its own when compared to Sydney. I'll definitely need to catch the City Cat at night. Loving all the lights.

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  2. YAY, PICS!!!!!!!!!

    What a lovely tour of Brisbane and you amazing beach house. Whale watching must be EXTRAORDINARY!!!!!! I am so thrilled that you almost have the place finished!

    Still waiting here in Chicago to see if this appraisal ever happens on the loft! I amy have to postpone my trip to Florida for another month because if this does sell, I have to move AGAIN... Three times in three years! UGH!

    STILL in shock over last nights TRAMA.... but life goes on. I am seriously looking into getting my ITALIAN citizenship (paternal grand parents were born there) I may be moving to a lovely Tuscan village home next. Keep your fingers crossed! I KNOW YOU'LL COME VISIT ME THERE for SURE!

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    1. Once I saw your comment about moving to Tuscany I couldn't think of anything else. More chance of me visiting you there than in the US now. Oh, please, do it. You'll be inspired to write!

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    2. I am SERIOUSLY thinking about it. It all depends on how much red tape I have to go through to get my citizenship. Non of my aunts or uncles are alive now, so I don't have the access to my grandparents paperwork. But if it doesn't cost too much to dig a bit, I can get their birth certificates/marriage license, and when they arrived at Ellis Island. It could be quite interesting digging up the past, especially at the turn of the century in NYC...

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    3. That sounds fascinating, Michael. What a beautiful, different place to live. Hopefully, it won't be too difficult. Although Italian bureaucracy is mad!!

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    4. That's what I heard, too. But, with all the sites on line they have these days, it may not be too difficult. Let's keep our fingers crossed!

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    5. Then, I'll also have to learn Italian.... I do speak some French, so it may not be too difficult for me to learn...

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    6. I'm sure it won't be. Italian is easy to read but hard to follow as they speak so fast!

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  3. I'm more of a city person, as I burn easily if out in the sun (Scottish skin), but I love walking on the beaches. My most momentous move was at age 20, when I left the USA to come to Canada, to the beautiful city of Vancouver. I've never regretted that change which opened up opportunities I would never have had and met people who were great mentors and friends. Good luck Denise in whatever you do, but do keep us posted, eh?

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    1. Vancouver looks amazing. I'd love to visit one day. And having great mentors is easier in the city, I think, although Noosa, just north of me has a flourish writing community.

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  4. Oh lovely! Thanks so much for sharing. I like the beach and the city! --And the mountains and the desert.

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    1. And my biggest move was from the west coast to the east coast (USA).

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    2. Yeah, I like different landscapes, Holly. But I do prefer the beach over the country, although where i live is a bit of both.

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  5. A light post and some normalcy is definitely what I need right now.

    The State Library looks amazing. I would want to spend DAYS there. :) I enjoyed the photos and the tidbits about Brisbane. Thanks!

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    1. The State Library is amazing. The place for research, that's for sure.

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  6. I feel like I've been to Australia now :) Thanks for sharing all your favorite spots. I think they would be mine, too. Put me on the list with Michael for wanting to see more pics!

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    1. Yeah, as soon as I get the dust off everything Carol, another post on the beach will be up.

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  7. So nice!!! I'm jealous of the spaces (especially the beach ones!) but even more jealous of all the blog/writing buddies you've met in person!
    Thanks for the pics :)

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    1. It's great meeting blog buddies that's for sure Jemi! Have spent a fair bit of time with Nas over the years!

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  8. My biggest move was from one end of the country (Michigan) to the other (Louisiana) -- or from hand to foot (the shapes of both states!) I truly enjoyed your Brisbane pictures. Have fun no matter where you live, Roland

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    1. I will, Roland. I'm a fun person most of the time! Glad you like the pics.

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  9. Thanks for sharing the photos. A reminder that there is still a normal world outside of North America :)

    My biggest move was from UK to Canada. That was so scary, looking back, I'm amazed we did it and I have no wish to move again in the foreseeable future!

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    1. I don't think North America will ever be normal again, just sayin'.

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  10. Your view from the writing room is luscious! I second Michael in the demand for more photos. Brisbane looks amazing too, love rivers, so...I have been feeling bereft since the news broke on behalf of my family/friends in NAm so many thanks for the change of topic, much needed!

    My biggest move would be to Nigeria at age 8 - in terms of distance and of impact, it's led to an abiding fascination for all things African. Been moving city/country/continent ever since I was a toddler :)

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    1. I hope your family/friends have been comforted with answers to their questions. So now we have demos in several cities. Changing by the minute.
      I could move every year. Love it, except for all the packing and stuff.

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  11. Hi Denise - what a lovely selection of photos and anecdotes around the storyline of life chez Denise. Great photos - and yes I imagine Aus is similar to SA in some respects ...

    Lots of moves - which somewhat surprises me ... but interesting places - South Africa in Joburg, but visits to the Cape often, and around southern Africa ... and here then ... Surrey, Cornwall, London and now the south coast - with a few other hops and jumps around ...

    Interesting to read where everyone's been or come from originally ... lovely light post for us all .. cheers Hilary

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    1. I imagine it is similar, Hilary. You learn so much by moving/travelling. I envy you your African sojourns. Wonder if you have any more moves in the wings?

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  12. I think the sofa bed on the deck would be my favorite place. Great photos. Looking forward to seeing more.

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    1. It certainly is a treat to lie there during the day feeling absolutely decadent!

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  13. Not much of a sitting on the beach person, but sitting in a house with a view of the beach, I could do that haha

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    1. Not half bad Pat. We should all do that from time to time.

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  14. Hi Denise!

    I would miss staying in your City flat on our next visit for sure. It was so handy to just walk everywhere.

    But the beach house is very lovely with a great view. I wish I could come and stay there for inspiration and writing in longer spells!

    Lovely of you to share photos today.

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    1. Yeah, I'm definitely not ready to sell it Nas. I expect we'll be using it a bit this coming year. Or others are welcome, as are you if we don't have it rented out.

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  15. I've lived in a lot of places: huge cities, small towns, beach-side villages. All have their pros and cons, but I'm lucky to live in a touristy city on the beach with plenty of beautiful public areas, a big range of restaurants and tons of shops. I have to say your beach town appeals to me much more than Brisbane.

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    1. Where you live sounds wonderful Lexa.

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  16. I would absolutely love to have a beach house! We lived 3 blocks from the beach for a while, and it was amazing to just get out and go walking after dark--plus my hair was the healthiest it's ever been. Ah, good memories. I would take any form of nature--trees, beach, mountains. Florida has been hard for me in that regard, because it's so flat.

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  17. Lovely, lovely pictures. Congratulations on having such a wonderful opportunity and making the most of it. Hard work, rewarded! So glad the election is over, so sad for the results, but now the real work begins! Keeping such a man from destroying the world! :(
    Thanks for sharing, I'm sure Lynda and you will get to spend some time together!
    This time I copied it before hitting send. :)

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    1. I'm sorry that google ate your comment, Yolanda. Glad you returned and tried again.

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  18. Great pictures, Denise. Your beach place looks amazing, although I'm a city girl myself. I like Vancouver, where I live (with D.G.Hudson as a neighbor), and I don't want to move to a smaller town. The biggest move in my life was from Moscow, Russia to Vancouver, Canada. At the time, I felt that I moved from a city to a village. I still do, sometimes, even if I never regretted the move. Canada is so much better than Russia.
    BTW: thanks for your email. I was sure I was a subscriber to your blog, but it seems I only subscribed to the Wordpress one, and you stopped posting there. I'll rectify the situation now and subscribe to this url.

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    1. I knew you'd have an interesting story, Olga. Lucky you, living near to D.G. It would be so interesting to see Moscow though I'm sure I wouldn't like to live there.

      Yeah, I've been too busy to double post so WP has taken a break. But I'll be back soon!

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  19. Hi, dear sis. I've been going to comment but life has been ... well, up and down. And then I saw you commented on my Halloween story, belatedly you say. Hey, I know what a busy and it seems happy life you are living right now. These photos do indeed tell the story, and they're all stunning. How I would love to live in Brisbane. As for me, I'm really doing little blogging now, though I'm not going to ever again officially announce it. Probably will post something occasionally just to keep in touch with a few of my dearest blogger friends, but most I have felt close to in the past come and go, most of them going. And then there's life. Jen has been sick with a cold; we still have various aide problems and I'm often days on 24 hour duty alone. And though I'm told, and it's generally true, I look and act much younger than my 76+ years, I just can't do as much and all that I want in a day, I more and more don't sleep as well as I used to, and so my energy is going to be directed to something I feel very strongly about. I'm going to focus on writing my spiritual journey for my children and grandchildren, especially for my son and wife and two little boys who will definitely appreciate this. I WILL keep in touch with you and Hillary and Roland Yeomans. When you post I get notified via email :) and of course I want to know when you publish your next wonderful book. Wow, you'll get to have Lynda Young face to face - how marvelous. And I look forward to more stunning photographs of your awesome travels. Take care. Enjoy, enjoy. Many ((( ))) from me and Jen

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    1. p.s. I'm also back to reading nonfiction books that I began before I got myself into the WordPress thing. And watching wonderful series like Heartland (set in Canada) with Jen. I get more satisfaction from these sources than anything else.

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    2. Ann you're amazing. I wish you didn't have so much trouble with your aides. You must be exhausted at times. I hope you'll always stay in touch whether you blog or not.

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    3. I WILL stay in touch. When I come here when you put up a new post, just know I'll return to get your reply as my blogging is truly at an end. Many, many ((( )))

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  20. Awesome pictures. I used to live in a beach town on Lake Michigan. I love, love, love the beach and walking on the pier. So miss that experience.

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    1. I never like being far from the beach either.

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  21. Thanks for the beautiful tour around your part of the world! I felt like I'd just taken a vacation.

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  22. I'm a mountain person, but I love the beach, too. I grew up in coastal cities until I was twelve, and now we go back and visit my favorite ones in Oregon when we can. Lovely photos. Thank you for sharing. And now I desperately want that iced coffee.

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    1. Ooh, I'm glad someone mentioned that iced coffee. It truly is amazing!

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  23. There's that sofa bed again. How I love that sofa bed. Never mind the beach and the ocean view and the Poetry Cafe -- what a great name. I really wish you'd host a writing retreat one of these days!!

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