I grew up in the seventies and eighties with a bit of an 'alternative' background, and lived in Australia, New Zealand, England and Europe, finally finishing my last year of high school in L.A.
Back in Australia I spent the years between 17 and 35 living in Sydney, Melbourne, the Northern Rivers and Brisbane, working a variety of jobs: waitressing, dancing, reception, massage, apprentice chef (dishpig), checkout chick - you name it, the dodgier the better. My first job ever was working as a cook/deckhand on a prawn trawler out of Cairns. I had an early morning watch where I had to drive the boat until the day I crashed it into a reef.
I started my first Simone Kirsch book, Peepshow, in 2000 while living in Elwood and St Kilda. I'd always wanted to write, but had found it much easier to talk about than to do! I was attempting a Diploma of Professional Writing and a Private Investigator's Certificate (never finished either) and I think that by creating Simone I was paying homage to the hard boiled PI novels I loved, while replacing the private dick with a female character who managed to be an ass-kicking bad-girl and feminist, all at the same time.
I completed a BA in Communications at the University of Technology, Sydney in 1998, an MPhil in Creative Writing at the University of Queensland in 2008, a Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults in Hanoi, 2009, and a Grad Dip in Teaching in 2011. I'm currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Wollongong, researching Australian Noir fiction.
After living and teaching in Vietnam for 4 years I've recently moved back to Melbourne where I'm teaching ESL and Creative Writing and raising my two sons aged 3 and 2. I'm also hard at work finishing the 5th Simone book, Repentance Creek, which I hope will be out in 2015.