Dr Nickers talks to Little Steps Australia about capturing the day-to-day magic in everyday life

March 11th, 2024

Did you enjoy writing when you were a child? 

Since I can remember, I have wanted to write stories. Creative writing was one of the few subjects that I excelled in at school. There are several occasions where I recall being asked by the teacher to read my stories or poems to the class.

I think I loved story writing so much because I could make anything happen, no matter how outrageous. Stories have always felt magical to me, a place where anything can happen, where one can transcend reality, a glorious and wonderous escape.

What were your favourite books when you were a child? 

I loved Dr Seuss so much. My favourite of his books was The Cat in the Hat, I equally love Where the Wild Things Live by Maurice Sendak.  Enid Blyton was another dearly loved author, I am still so inspired by her writing style. I have read many of her books as a child, and as a mother I read them to my children, The Whishing Chair, Noddy, and our all time favourite The Far Away Tree. My friends and I were inspired by her tales of The Secret Seven and would pretend that we were kid detectives, creating mysteries, special codes, and clues for the group to solve.

Other books I loved during my primary school years and into my adult years are Alices Adventures in Wonderland, The Little Prince, Minnow on The Say, Shiva’s Pearls, Bridge to Terabithia. I re-read all these books last year (for the first time in over 40 years) and they were all just as wonderous and fantastical to read as they were when I was 9/10/11/12 years old.

How do you dream up new ideas and characters? 

Currently, my Characters are all based on actual animals, people, events that have touched my life. I seem to find myself making up funny stories, they seem to pop into my head at odd moments and that’s when I write them down. I like to think that my stories capture the day-to-day magic in a regular life.

Which writers, films or illustrations have influenced your work? 

Maurice Sendak, Julia Donaldson, Dr Suess, Enid Blyton, Lewis Caroll, Katherine Patterson, Philippa Pearce, Harriet Graham have all inspired me equally and in different measure.

What’s the best piece of advice you would give to young writers?

The magic happens best when you don’t over think things. Just write, have fun, and see what happens upon your page.

You can purchase your copy of Charlie and the Hall of Mirrors here:

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