Alice Nannup and my Nan

Alice Nannup and my Nan

Tall And True Short Reads

Alice Nannup and my Nan

Episode 67 (30 January 2023)

Henry Rollins said, “A great way to learn about your country is to leave it.” And I learned a lot about Australia while living overseas from 1987 to 1996. Books like Alice Nannup’s When The Pelican Laughed (published by Fremantle Arts Centre Press in 1992) helped my education. And from her memoir, I learned about the Stolen Generation and a connection with my Nan.

Please note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are warned this podcast episode contains the names and words of people who have passed away.

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Alice Nannup and my Nan

Show Notes

Episode 67 (30 January 2023)

Alice Nannup and my Nan is a memoir post from the Tall And True writers’ website, written and narrated by Robert Fairhead.

Please note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are warned this post and podcast episode contain the names and words of people who have passed away.

Read the post on Tall And True: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/blog/alice-nannup-and-my-nan

When The Pelican Laughed on Trove: https://trove.nla.gov.au/work/20347900?selectedversion=nbd8151722

Podcast website: https://www.tallandtrueshortreads.com

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Writer’s Insight

I returned to Australia in February 1996 after living and travelling overseas for nine years. While away, I’d followed Henry Rollins’ advice and learned a lot about my country and our real Indigenous history through reading and reflection. Alice Nannup’s When The Pelican Laughed and conversations with my Nan helped me with this journey.

And in July 2020, on the 24th anniversary of the passing of my Nan, I wrote and shared this reflective post on Tall And True.

I hope you enjoy listening to the story of Alice Nannup and my Nan. You can read this memoir post and all my short stories, blog posts and other writing at TallAndTrue.com. You can also buy my short story collections from the Amazon Kindle and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be released shortly. In the meantime, check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from Seasons One, Two and Three.

And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps me share my stories with other listeners.

You can support this podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

And finally, please tell your family and friends about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity.

Episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

Acast Podcast Supporter Page

Support this show: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

Contact Us

Alice Nannup and my Nan

The New Fifty

Tall And True Short Reads

The New Fifty

Episode 66 (16 January 2023)

Eighty is the new fifty, or so I’m told. But my back wasn’t this dodgy when I was fifty, and my knees lasted longer than a circuit of the park with the dog before seizing up. And I wasn’t caught short so often that I needed to memorise the location of the nearest public toilet for emergency pit stops!

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The New Fifty

Show Notes

Episode 66 (16 January 2023)

The New Fifty is a short story from the Tall And True writers’ website, written and narrated by Robert Fairhead.

Read the story on Tall And True: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/fiction/short-stories/the-new-fifty

Robert’s dog posts on Twitter: https://twitter.com/MyDogPosts

Robert’s dog posts on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mydogposts/

Podcast website: https://www.tallandtrueshortreads.com

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Writer’s Insight

I wrote The New Fifty in September 2022 for the Australian Writer’s Centre’s quarterly Furious Fiction writing competition. The brief for the 500-word short story was:

  • The first sentence had to contain the word FIFTY
  • The story had to include a four-legged animal
  • And the words EMERGENCY, BRUSH and BOARD. (Longer variations were acceptable as long as they retained the original spelling.)

As a long-term dog lover, the four-legged animal for the story was an easy choice. (I even have Twitter and Instagram accounts for my dog posts.) And, as usual, it wasn’t hard to find places for the required words, for instance, pairing BRUSH with a dog.

However, after submitting it, I had a crisis of confidence in the story. In the original Furious Fiction version, the protagonist was fifty, not eighty, and the first sentence was:

Fifty is the new thirty, or so they tell me.

I’m sixty, and it occurred to me that the thoughts I attributed to my protagonist were of an older man. So I flipped the opening line and perspective of the story to:

Eighty is the new fifty, or so I’m told.

By coincidence, shortly before sharing The New Fifty on Tall And True, I saw a story in a local newspaper headlined, “Eighty is the New Forty”!? Does that make sixty the new thirty? With my back and knees and growing need for “pit stops”, I doubt it!

I hope you enjoyed listening to The New Fifty. You can read this and all my short stories, blog posts and other writing at TallAndTrue.com. You can also buy my short story collections from the Amazon Kindle and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be released shortly. In the meantime, check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from Seasons One, Two and Three.

And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps me share my stories with other listeners.

You can support this podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

And finally, please tell your family and friends about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity.

Episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

Acast Podcast Supporter Page

Support this show: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

Contact Us

Alice Nannup and my Nan

Kris Kringle – Xmas 2022

Tall And True Short Reads

Kris Kringle – Xmas 2022

Episode 65 (22 December 2022)

I’m taking a short break from writing and podcasting over the Xmas/New Year holiday period. But as a special treat for podcast listeners, I’ve put together a Kris Kringle collection featuring three “festive” episodes from the Tall And True Short Reads archive: The Gift, The Special Tree and The Spirit of Xmas.

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Kris Kringle – Xmas 2022

Show Notes

Episode 65 (22 December 2022)

The Kris Kringle stories in this collection first appeared on the Tall And True writers’ website and were written and narrated by Robert Fairhead:

Podcast website: https://www.tallandtrueshortreads.com

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Writer’s Insight

I’m taking a short break from writing and podcasting over the Xmas/New Year holiday period. But as a special treat for podcast listeners, I’ve put together a Kris Kringle collection featuring three “festive” episodes from the Tall And True Short Reads archive:

The Gift was my short story for the Australian Writers’ Centre’s December 2020 Furious Fiction writing competition, and it had to include a GIFT of some kind. While I didn’t opt for a cliched Xmas theme, the story proved to be an early Xmas “gift” for me as it was one of the most fully formed I’ve devised and written, submitting it 12 hours before the competition’s midnight deadline.

The Special Tree was my December 2021 entry for Furious Fiction. Part of the brief was the story had to include a TREE and, once again, the temptation was to fashion a festive season scenario. As with The Gift, however, I wrote a short story that had nothing to do with Xmas or Xmas trees. And instead, I drew on my boyhood experience of climbing trees for the protagonist and plot.

The Spirit of Xmas is a blog post I shared after spending Xmas 2019 with my West Australian family in Margaret River, south of Perth. Unfortunately, COVID and state border closures meant I couldn’t return to WA for another three years. And I released this episode in January 2022, dedicating it to my family and other families who spent Xmas 2021 separated or alone due to COVID.

At the end of each Kris Kringle story is an expanded explanation of when, why and how I wrote it.

I hope you enjoy this collection. You can read all my short stories, blog posts and other writing at TallAndTrue.com. You can also buy my short story ebooks, Both Sides of the Story, Twelve Furious Months and Twelve More Furious Months, from the Amazon Kindle and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be released shortly. In the meantime, check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from Seasons One, Two and Three.

And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps me share my stories with other listeners.

You can support this podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

And finally, please tell your family and friends about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity.

Episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

Acast Podcast Supporter Page

Support this show: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

Contact Us

Alice Nannup and my Nan

Memories and Imagination

Tall And True Short Reads

Memories and Imagination

Episode 64 (12 December 2022)

The writer John Banville observed, “Memory is imagination, and imagination is memory. I don’t think we remember the past, we imagine it.” I have vivid memories of my early childhood (I believe they’re memories, not imagination), which is why the #5YearOldSelfie hashtag challenge on social media caught my eye.

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Memories and Imagination

Show Notes

Episode 64 (12 December 2022)

Memories and Imagination is a memoir piece from the Tall And True writers’ website, written and narrated by Robert Fairhead.

Read the piece: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/nonfiction/biography-memoir/memories-and-imagination

Link to my #5YearOldSelfie tweet on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tallandtrue/status/1159625729455222784

Young Minds UK: https://www.youngminds.org.uk/

John Banville: http://john-banville.com/

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Writer’s Insight

I wrote Memories and Imagination in August 2019, inspired by the hashtag #5YearOldSelfie challenge on social media. And the “Memory is imagination, and imagination is memory” quote by Irish author John Banville, whose 2005 Booker Prize-winning novel, The Sea, I’d just read.

As I admitted in the piece, I invoked a writer’s licence for the challenge. For a start, I didn’t “tag three friends to help spread the love” on social media. And in the photo posted, I was closer to four than five. But unlike my son and his generation, born and raised in the digital age, I don’t have hundreds (or perhaps thousands) of photos of the younger me.

The three things I told the child in the photo, however, were from the heart:

  • Don’t cry, you’re not the only one in the world whose parents have separated.
  • Tomatoes and peas aren’t that yucky, but you’re right about Brussels sprouts.
  • And save up your pocket money and buy Apple shares.

And sorry, Mum, I didn’t imagine the guinea pig. I remember having one when I was five. 

I hope you enjoyed my memories and imagination. You can read this memoir piece and all my short stories, blog posts and other writing at TallAndTrue.com. You can also buy my short story collections, including my latest collection, Twelve More Furious Months, from the Amazon Kindle and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be in your podcast feed shortly. In the meantime, check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from Seasons One, Two and Three.

And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps other listeners find my writing.

You can support this podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

And finally, please tell your family and friends about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity.

Episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

Acast Podcast Supporter Page

Support this show https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

Contact Us

Alice Nannup and my Nan

Are We There Yet?

Tall And True Short Reads

Are We There Yet?

Episode 63 (22 November 2022)

“Are we there yet?” Milly whines from the back seat. “I’m bored,” adds Tyler. “Oh, for goodness sake!” I snap, eyeballing the pair in the rear vision mirror. “It’s only been two hours.” Kids nowadays! The drive has been smooth and fast compared to the narrow, windy roads of my childhood family holidays.

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Are We There Yet?

Show Notes

Episode 63 (22 November 2022)

Are We There Yet? is a short story from the Tall And True writers’ website, written and narrated by Robert Fairhead.

Read the story: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/short-stories/are-we-there-yet

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Writer’s Insight

I wrote “Are We There Yet?” in September 2022 for a Flash Fiction Competition hosted by the South Coast Writers Centre and Berry Writers Festival.

The brief for the competition was that the short piece of fiction must be under 500 words (my story is 498 words). And writers should include the theme or word “berry” but “interpret the theme in a broad and creative way”.

My interpretation, however, was literal, about the town of Berry, on the NSW south coast, two hours south of Sydney. And it was inspired by a conversation with my twenty-year-old son.

My son is currently working in Berry. But he has a long association with the town because we used to stop there for a break on the drive to our old south coast holiday house. And one of his favourite places as a young boy was Apex Park, running about its lush lawns, playing chasey around the rotunda and, of course, playing in the playground.

My son mentioned the new Boongaree Rotary Nature Play Park and said if the playground had existed when we used to stop there, we would never have got him out of it!

I haven’t been to Berry since we sold our holiday house in 2016. But talking to my son about the new playground and his memories of the old one had me reflecting on our family holidays. And while I didn’t win or get short-listed for the Flash Fiction competition, I’m happy I wrote this short homage to Berry.

I hope you also enjoyed the break in Berry. You can read “Are We There Yet?” and all my short stories, blog posts and other writing at TallAndTrue.com. You can also buy my short story collections, including my latest collection, Twelve More Furious Months, from the Amazon Kindle and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be in your podcast feed shortly. In the meantime, check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from Seasons One, Two and Three.

And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps other listeners find my writing.

You can support this podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

And finally, please tell your family and friends about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity.

Episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

Acast Podcast Supporter Page

Support this show https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

Contact Us

Alice Nannup and my Nan

Timeline Memories

Tall And True Short Reads

Timeline Memories

Episode 62 (8 November 2022)

I dread mornings like these when Facebook floods my timeline memories with posts and photos of Jas and the kids. On social media, we’re still a happy family. Whereas in the real world, I live alone and only see the kids on weekends. But that’s not Facebook’s fault. It’s just an algorithm.

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Timeline Memories

Show Notes

Episode 62 (8 November 2022)

Timeline Memories is a short story from the Tall And True writers’ website, written and narrated by Robert Fairhead.

Read the story: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/short-stories/timeline-memories

Blog Post with photo of Jet: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/blog/introducing-tall-and-true-short-reads

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Writer’s Insight

I wrote Timeline Memories in July 2022 as my entry for The Big Issue’s September 2022 Fiction Edition. The magazine received more than 900 short stories and selected 12 for publication. Unfortunately (for me), mine was not one of them, but I enjoyed the writing process.

The story draws on parts of my life — I post to Facebook, my son’s grown up, and I have a rescue dog — and pure imagination — I’ve never been to a toga party.

I suspect older parents (like me) will recognise the melancholy felt by my main character scrolling through his family posts. And dog lovers (also like me) know the comfort of having a dog on a mat beside your chair. And if you read my September 2020 blog post introducing the Tall And True Short Read podcast on the Tall And True website, you’ll see a photo of my rescue dog, Jet, on his mat beside my desk.

I hope you enjoyed my melancholic tale. You can read Timeline Memories and all my short stories, blog posts and other writing at TallAndTrue.com. You can also buy my short story collections, including my latest collection, Twelve More Furious Months, from the Amazon Kindle and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be in your podcast feed shortly. In the meantime, check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from Seasons One, Two and Three.

And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps other listeners find my writing.

You can support this podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

And finally, please tell your family and friends about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity.

Episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

Acast Podcast Supporter Page

Support this show https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

Contact Us