The Places in Between

Welcome to this website, where you’ll find some of my essays, articles and other writing. As well as putting up links to new pieces as they’re published, I’ll be posting short reads here from time to time.

Over on the About page you’ll find some information about me – birthplace, brief work history, publishing record. This piece is a chattier version of that.

I grew up in Australia in a small town a couple of hours from the nearest city. My family and I lived in an old bluestone house across the road from a railway line. Beyond that were hills and bush land where my siblings and I played often. When I finished school I moved to the city. All up, 30 odd years later, I’ve lived in seven places. For now, it’s Melbourne.

At a job interview a few years ago, Natalie, the woman who interviewed me, wasn’t so interested in the jobs I’d done as the transitions between them. Why did I make the move from midwife to palliative care nurse? From palliative care nurse to policy analyst? From policy analyst to training and development facilitator? From there to setting up my own business as a strategic planner and report writer? A constant pleasure through my work has been writing. Unusually for a nurse, I liked writing the patient reports at the end of each shift. In the early policy jobs I had, I was writing a lot of government reports and one day realised that how I now wrote was pretty bureaucratic, in the unflattering sense of that word. Long sentences, muddy language, convoluted explanations. I took myself off to a new city to get a professional writing qualification, convinced I needed to remove myself physically to break some bad habits. I did a mix of editing subjects and corporate, nonfiction and fiction writing over three years, and bit by bit learned better ways to write.

It opened up other doors too. A journalism subject led to my first two pieces of writing being published. Since then, I’ve combined work as a facilitator and plain English writer with creative writing.

If you’d like to know when new pieces are posted, you can follow me on Twitter, like me on Facebook, or email me at lea@leamcinerney.com. Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy what you find here.