1. What was it like growing up?

Hakea– I lived some of my life with my mum and dad, some of my life as a kid with my grandparents and then I moved back with my dad as a teen. I was a book worm- I kind of used books as a way to escape reality and dive into other worlds.

Carl- I grew up in Halls Creek in the desert of the Kimberley Western Australia. I was a wild, snotty nosed bush kid who rode horses, ran around catching goanna, fishing and swimming with mates.

2. Where do you get your book ideas from?

Hakea and Carl– Events or snippets of real life. For instance, Jy shooting down birds with a shanghai (slingshot) was a real thing that happened when I was teaching in Halls Creek. Or the way the grandfather makes Jy eat the bird was what happened when we went out bush with our mate TJ and his family. We kind of also think about stories we wish we had or stories we wish our son and daughter could read.

3. Who is your favourite author?

Hakea- Isobelle Carmody, Ian Irvine, John Marsden, Tristan Bancks… do I have to just pick ONE!

Carl- I love sports biographies, crime or interesting Australian autobiographies.

4. Who is your writing role model or mentor?

Hakea and Carl- Our editor, Shel Sweeney from A Worded Life, was the reason we had the guts to even submit Black Cockatoo to be considered with Magabala Books.

5. What is the hardest thing about writing a book?

Hakea and Carl- Finding time and a quiet place that we can actually write together.

6. What is the best thing about writing a book?

Hakea- Seeing that book finished… then seeing other people enjoy it!

Carl- Seeing my family members reading my books. Knowing that I am telling stories that have Aboriginal stories and faces in them. That my stories matter.

7. What is your favourite food?

Hakea- Today it is mash potato… next week it will be something else! I kind of have these food moments where I will eat so much of one type of food over a week or two then not touch them for a year. One time it was Magnum icecreams every single day, another time it was Nutrigrain, then one time it was hummus and dip.

Carl- bush foods. Turkey, barra, goanna.

8. What is your favourite show?

Hakea- I’ve been loving Bluey (ABC Kids), The 100 on Netflix and probably… the News? I don’t watch too much TV 🙂

Carl- I love watching sports! AFL is my favourite but I also enjoy basketball and every sport.

9. What is your favourite movie?

Hakea- I’m not sure I have one!


10. What advice do you have for someone wanting to be a writer?

Hakea- It took me until I was 29 and had inspiration from Carl and support from our writing mentor (Shel Sweeney from A Worded Life) to find my voice. Write stories you love… and it won’t matter when or if you get published.

11. What is your next book about?

Hakea- We have a few on the go at the moment! A handful of children’s books based in the bush and a novel about football.

Carl- I won the Black&Write! Fellowship for my Backyard Sports Series  so I guess that’s out next for me.

12. Do you ever do school visits or Skype?

Yes, we do! Contact us on our Contact page or on social media.

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