Michael McCluskey, a journalist, presenter, broadcast executive and media consultant lived and worked in many regions and cities across Australia, Asia and the Pacific. In this interview with artist Debasmita Dasgupta, executive director of ArtsPositive, Michael shares his sources of inspiration as a storyteller and the making of his books.
What inspired you to become a storyteller?
With more than 35 years working in journalism and broadcast media, storytelling has formed the basis of my professional life. Stories are the essence of human interaction. They can convey real events and exchanges of ideas and also form the basis for human creativity and imagination. I love the process of creating imaginative stories that, even though they may be fictional, can reflect upon the real life actions and emotions in people’s daily lives. It is my hope that I engage with audiences to provide stories that are not only compelling and entertaining, but also provoke thoughtful and emotional responses.
Tell us a bit about your latest book. The idea behind?
With The Atonement of Grace O’Connell I wanted to tell a compelling, realistic story that demonstrated how hard life was for pioneering women, in rural Australia, especially those born out of wedlock. My main character is an extraordinary woman who uncovers deceit, betrayal and murder in her pioneering family’s past. Born in 1884 on an Australian homestead, she overcomes prejudice and persecution and gains love, happiness and fortune. With faith and tenacity she strives to atone for the sinful legacy of her inheritance. Yet, probing too deeply, she reveals shocking secrets that should have remained buried with the dead forever.
Is there any other exciting book that you are currently working on?
My book is available as an eBook or Paperback at my website. It is also available through Amazon and other outlets, including the publisher. I am currently working on a new novel relating to people’s senses and how they define our capacity to experience events, places, people and emotions.