Who am I?

A fresh face kid at the Rockhampton Morning Bulletin newsroom, who just managed to scrape through High School, but failed maths (hence his lack of fortune) To a reasonably respectable corporate flyer with friends in high places and a clutch of loyal, long term clients.

Adapted from an introduction to a lecture by Ken at a Writer's Group -

"I am a commercial wordsmith.

I collect facts and, like the fish and chips, wrap them up in a parcel to take home. I am a mechanic, but having said that I like to think that a lot of what I do is creative.

I've never attempted writing for pleasure - I'm flat out writing a letter to my mother. I wouldn't dare attempt poetry - my repertoire extending as far as The Sentimental Bloke, Ogden Nash and a few filthy limerics.

Every time I think about writing a play or a book - which I would like to do one day - writing for money gets in the way. I am a living example of the ability to succeed as a commercial writer - with few other qualifications other than curiosity and a highly developed survival instinct.

I was taught to write by old newspaper sub-editors who told me to get out of the office and hang around the pubs and the courtrooms.

I am an example of the ability of the human brain to switch - computer like - from one program to another in an instant.......a press statement one minute, a complex technical script the next, followed by a piece of comedy writing for a newsletter and then a report for a Senate Committee of Inquiry. And I do it all at a speed which most CEO's could only dream about.

I am a former journalist - I don't admit to it too often these days considering the growing entertainment quality of the media.

I came in from the cold and joined the real world - writing on a variety of subjects in the public relations industry.

My forte is script writing - documentaries mainly. I have learnt to adapt writing styles to a range of commercial pursuits. I see everything in pictures. When I play music, I see pictures in accompaniament. This is an important talent to have for script writing.

So does journalism and writing have anything in common.

A mate of mine who was never a journalist, but who came up through the advertising industry and developed a great writing talent, used to review some of my early documentary scripts. His instruction was brief - "Ken, when are you going to stop being a journalist and become a writer." In examining myself in more detail at that point, I found that I was full of tired old reporting cliches - they still use them today.

Is journalism simply literature in a hurry. Is journalism, in the words of Oscar Wilde, unreadable, and literature unread.

On the other hand is literature simply news that stays news. Is indeed writing the only profession where no one considers you ridiculous if you earn no money.

As we all know, there's a great power in words, if you don't hitch too many of them together. Another great man said, 'If you would be pungent, be brief; for it is with words as with sunbeams - the more they are condensed, the deeper they burn.'

The more you say, the less people remember. The fewer the words, the greater the profit. ....and to finish my repertoire of quotations about writers and journalists.....I was brought up to think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people."

Putting together a website is more than just an electronic brochure of my capabilities.

I've chosen to make this website a window on my life. It is a technology that enables me to assemble a great number of memories and stories and pictures in a way in which the casual browser will find something to amuse or criticise.

It may also become useful as a family resource, hence my plan to put the Newton family history in a section of this site so that my 40 or more years of off-and-on genaeological research can be shared with other family members.


My exploits probably explain my grey hair. I'm not fazed by the possibility that younger people might make me redundant. I just don't think that's likely. I've helped train a lot of university graduates and quite frankly - apart from the couple of letters after their name, they all remind me of me, at the same age and just as naive and just as unworldly.

The reality of this day and age is "There are no university or TAFE courses in wisdom".

That's my cutting edge.

I've put a lot of my pictures in a picture scrapbook on this site. Would you like to see them. Click here.












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