Thursday, April 26, 2018

Meet our Members . CWD Member Interview – Shane Brigg


Each Thursday in 2018 we will be interviewing one of the members of Christian Writers Downunder – to find out a little bit more about them and their writing/editing goals.

Today we interview Shane Brigg.

Shane Brigg enjoys good coffee, chats and a walk with friends and family

BOOKS MUSIC MOVIES PLACES and PEOPLE

Question 1: Tells us three things about who you are and where you come from.
In our bedhead we have a bookshelf. Beside my mind all night long I have the key influential books of my life. It is as if the ink comes to life each night in my resting and dreams and visions and scoping for the day ahead. A little book with a faded cover is here. My Side of the Mountain by Jean George. I first read it as a young boy who loved nature, wanting to find my way in the world and seeking to know the Creator. I grew up in South East Queensland. My Mum and Dad instilled in me a love of nature.  I remember hours exploring the creeks and forests near our home. Perhaps this is what lead me to study Environmental Science. I love bushwalking, gardening, walks along our coastline and noticing the wonders of the world. This has not only meant exploring and studying wild valleys, forests, swamps, caves, mountains, deserts, animals, plants and landscapes worldwide. It has meant stepping through the open doors, gateways, arches, and homes full of human life in towns and cities across our globe.   I have an intense passion for the things of creation but particularly for the humanity our Creator died for to reveal His love.  

Adventuring in Life and Nature. Shane on top of Mount Cooroora

I love people. All sorts of people. Those environmental studies lead me into discovering more about humanity as anthropology and sociology was offered to me. Assignment work amongst homeless young people living on the streets of Brisbane, ministry amongst Indigenous communities, leading teams cross culturally into South East Asia have punctuated my journey.  A song that has become a theme for my life is “Rose Coloured Stain Glass Windows” by Petra.

When I first heard it, it moved me so much I cried. For me it was the story of my passion for seeing what I had discovered of a saviour who had stepped out of His position to save me and the world around me, and He wanted his people to do the same. Go into the world. Reveal His love. That is what defines me. I am a Chaplain of one of the largest schools in Queensland. Loving families from all walks of life. We live in the University of the Sunshine Coast precinct. Here our missional community reflects the more than 40 Nations represented. Each week we connect personally with dozens of new friends from many different tribes, many of whom are only just realising that the Creator is real and loves them intensely. We are blessed to call them family.

Connecting with International Students inspires a global depth to Shane's Writing 

Question 2: Tell us about your writing (or editing/illustrating etc).  What do you write and why?
My writing reflects all this framework. I write about and for people. My writing expresses the needs these populations have. Most of my writing happens because it must. Communicating happenings, helps, honest musings and happy celebrations. Things like articles produced in magazines, school newsletters, newspapers, online platforms are a regular happening for me. Academic writing, helping students, training, resources for learning, coaching, empowering ministry tools are also prime to my writing.
More creative pursuits provide a personal outlet for me. I have several projects concurrently underway that many of the aforementioned writings take pre-eminence over due to real time constrictions. And yet a Trilogy that I started some 33 years ago continues to take shape. It started as random writings that seemed to come together miraculously and now has a reasoned synopsis, powerful authentic characters, and situations that are reflective of my own life journey expressed as a fictional pre-dystopian narrative. Other projects include a young adult Graphic Novel, a fun Aussie school-based reader for junior primary, and a fantasy novel that delves into the principles highlighted in the book of Ephesians. I have also written scripts and screenplays, with storyboarding and artwork to compliment.

Creating Narratives with a Challenge in mind for Young People



Question 3: Who has read your work? Who would you like to read it?
The primary audiences for what I have written have been those within the communities I have the honour of serving as Pastor, bible college lecturer, Chaplain, and friend. Students, families, readerships across entire regions in newspapers, our families of faith, deliberate, opportune and often nonintentional audiences. I look forward to watching how publishing my major creative works can impact lives as they are read by the young adults and children they are aimed at.

Question 4: Tell us something about your process. What challenges do you face? What helps you the most?
Much of my creative work is an expression of occurrences and real-life situations I have encountered. They are a sort of journaling on my behalf. But I write through the lenses of my key characters in a fictional world.  I am inspired by the works of Stephen Lawhead, Tolkien and various adventure and fantasy sci fi writers. Movies such as Blade Runner, Hacksaw Ridge, Lord of the Rings, Blood Diamond, and They Killed My Father motivate me to write to themes that move people to action. 

Creative Journaling is a foundation for Shane's Writing.
My Son Vietnam.


  
Question 5: What is your favourite Writing Craft Book and why?
I do not have a favourite writing craft book, but a major premise I gained from a book about
CS Lewis’s writing style has been very liberating. Truth does not have to be factual. What this means is that often Truth is discovered in unreal settings. For example, Aslan in CS Lewis’s writings is not a real entity but holds Truths about Christ. He is not a tame Lion.

Question 6: If you were to give a shout-out to a CWD author, writer, editor or illustrator – who would they be?
I have been blessed to reconnect recently with Nola Passmore. When I was ministering at the Uni she was lecturer at in the 1990’s, we prayed together with a group of academics, started a forum for students we called Catalyst, and now I am blessed to have her inspiring my journey as a writer. http://www.thewriteflourish.com.au/

Question 7: What are your writing goals for 2018? How will you achieve them?
The main goal I have is to create the structural framework around each of my works so that much of what is (at the moment) in handwritten form can be easily transferred into a digital format. I have about 3 archive boxes of handwritten material. sigh.

Question 8: How does your faith impact and shape your writing?
My faith journey is dynamically (if not overtly) reflected in everything I write. I aim to write from a point of authenticity and passion. I hope the love I have discovered in our Creator is revealed in humble expressions that bring my characters, plots, teachings and inspirations to life. Family is vitally important in my faith journey. Our own family is a huge inspiration. The family that we embrace within our faith journey brings light into a world that needs the brilliance of the Saviour’s love. This has a vital influence on my writing too.

Shane's Family. 

3 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed your interview Shane. Your childhood sounded idyllic - being able to explore creeks and forests near your home when you were young would certainly have instilled a love of nature. I love it how you are able to live a life of passion and service to our Creator and also invest in many lives. All the best with all your creative writing. It sounds like there's a lot ready to spring forth! Every blessing in your writing journey Shane. God bless you.

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  2. Thank you for this fabulous interview Shane. Your childhood sounds quite similar to my own. What a generous and mindful Creator we have. It's so reassuring to see God's hand in everyting we do, isn't it? God bless you as you continue on your writing journey.

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  3. So good to hear someone interviewed that I haven't seen interacting on the FB group. Sounds like there is lots of potential there that hopefully we will one day see in some accessible books.

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