Category Archives: Character Interviews

Meet Elisabeth Sharman, star of AUTOMATON

This is an interview with Elisabeth Sharman, senior solicitor with the Australian Capital Territory Legal Aid Service.

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Melissa George
Melissa George is the actor I would like to play Elisabeth Sharman if a film were to be made of AUTOMATON. She has that classy, fragile but inner strength look I want for Elisabeth. Photo from

Elisabeth, it’s lovely to finally meet you. I’ve been wanting to talk to you ever since the revelations that came out during Russell Montgomery’s trial. I thought we could tackle it by starting at the beginning and working our way from there.

Elisabeth: Sounds good to me.

 What prompted you to move from Sydney to Canberra?

Elisabeth: I love Sydney but not to put too fine a point on it I felt I had to leave. Work and life there were no longer tenable.

You were with Legal Aid and you moved to the Canberra Legal Aid office. So it wasn’t Legal Aid as such that you wanted to move away from?

Elisabeth: No. It was more that I kept running into someone I wanted nothing to do with.

Would that be Thierry Richards QC?

Elisabeth: Look … regardless of how I feel about that person I don’t want to … would you mind if we moved on.

Okay, let’s talk about when you arrived in Canberra. You jumped in at the deep end with the Russell Montgomery case.

Elisabeth: I’m really sorry… but do you mind if we don’t talk about that either.  It’s still very raw.

Not a problem. I understand. Let’s take a step back. Describe yourself to me. How do you see yourself?

Elisabeth: Okay. Let me attempt a bit of objectivity. Short spiky red hair. I used to be able to sit on it but had it cut before coming to Canberra. Typical redhead’s colouring … white, no freckles because I’ve never been a sunlover, size 10, 5’7” in bare feet, and I’m 34. How’s that? Oh, and shall I tell you what Robert said about my eyes? Green as deep ocean on a sunbright day.  I was speechless when he said it. No-one’s ever described them quite like that before. So now you’d know me in a crowd, yes?

Yes, I believe I would.  Next question: What do you hope to achieve in life?

Elisabeth: That a big question. Many things I suppose, but happiness has to be at the top. Nothing’s worth it if you’re not happy.

And are you? Happy, that is.

Elisabeth: I’m working on it. 

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Elisabeth: I’m a walker. For the exercise but also because I love it. Getting out and exploring and letting my mind wander. Never fails to refresh and re-invigorate.

Your friend Honey Milton was often a walking companion I believe.  What is she to you?

Elisabeth: My best friend.  Always will be.  She’s gorgeous.  I adore her.  I miss her like crazy now that I’m in Canberra.  We used to see each other all the time because her man travels a lot.  He’s an actor and tours with his company.  And as you say, we both liked walking.  Not so often together nowadays, given we now live in different cities.

What about Robert Murphy?

Elisabeth: Robert? I liked him the moment I met him. He’s straightforward, sincere, good at his job.  What’s not to like?  The fact that he’s very attractive is a plus … .  He stuck with me from the start despite the fact I couldn’t have been very likeable.  I had my reasons, but he didn’t know that.  But I count him among my good friends now.  I hope he feels the same way about me.

As much as I’d like to explore that further I know you don’t want to, so let’s turn to the trial. What was it about the Stavros family that irked you so much?

Elisabeth: Every single one of them was lying and I knew it.  But proving it was almost impossible because of Russell’s amnesia.  Thank God for Robert and Joe Gaudry.  In spite of me being no help they kept pushing.  It was entirely because of them we got to the truth.

Let’s finish with what’s made you the woman you are today?

Elisabeth: Mmm. That may be a question better put to others.  But I’ll have a go at it.  On a personal level I was very young when I made the decision that altered my life.  At the time I felt it was the only choice I could make, I believed I was too young to do anything else.  I still believe that.  But I feel the weight of condemnation from some people.  I try not to let it bother me.  On a professional level, law was something that always interested me.  When I started university I began a Bachelor of Arts, but the law components really gripped me so I changed and ended up doing a combined Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Economics.  I still like law.  But that’s not to say I wouldn’t be happy doing something else … if something else came along.

Elisabeth, thanks, I know you weren’t looking forward to this and what I might have been planning to ask you.  How about we go for a drink.  My shout.

Elisabeth: It’s Friday night so why not.  Great idea.  Just so you know though.  Anything I say under the influence is not for public consumption.

Fair enough.  Grab your bag then.  There’s a new bar opened up in Garema Place.  I thought we could see if it’s any good.

You can find Elisabeth and get to know her story in AUTOMATON

Melissa George’s IMDB page

@mgeorgeofficial on Twitter

Melissa George on Facebook

Interview with David Cameron, star of IMBROGLIO

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Today I was lucky enough to corner David Cameron for half an hour to talk to him about recent events in his life. It’s fair to say, and I don’t think he’ll contradict me, they were catastrophic and life changing for him.

Chris Hemsworth is the actor I would like to play David Cameron if a film were to be made of IMBROGLIO.
Photo from

Thanks for agreeing to sit still and have a coffee while I interrogate you.

David: No worries. Although it remains to be seen what I’ll actually answer.

I can see by the grin you’re not going to put too many obstacles up. I’m going to raise Noel Valentine straight the way. Putting it mildly, your meeting was unorthodox.

David: Putting it mildly, yes. But she saved my life twice, so I can only be grateful.

Twice? I know about the car accident but …

David: The second time was after the accident, when I was hospital. Who knows? If she hadn’t done what she did I could still be there and still be in a coma. No-one mentions it but it couldn’t have been easy for her, in any number of ways but one, specifically, was that she was injured herself and what she did must have caused her pain.

You’re right, no-one has brought that up before. How did you feel when you thought she was lost? Sorry, it’s obviously something that makes you uncomfortable.

David: No, not uncomfortable … Panic … still … every time I think about it. And if I still feel that way imagine how her parents, her family, still feel.

I apologise for mentioning it. What are your plans now everything has settled down? Do they include Noel?

David: If she wants it, yes. But let’s not jinx anything, huh?

Phoebe Tonkin--
Phoebe Tonkin, the Australian actor I would like to play Noel Valentine if a film of IMBROGLIO were made.
Photo from

All right, let’s talk about something else. You were sporting quite a few aliases there for a while. How did you keep track of them?

David: With difficulty. Glad to be done with them and be myself again.

How are things with your mother now?

David: Still a bit tricky but at least we’re talking. I spent several days with her in the States a few weeks back and it went well. And I’m glad. I gave both my parents a hard time when I was growing up and neither of them deserved it. I’m pleased to be back in the fold, so’s to speak.

The company, Gem Techtronics, I understand you’ve been working around the clock since taking over. Are you going to be able to save it?

David: I think so. It’s looking that way. Marion’s putting her heart and soul into it too, I couldn’t have attempted it without her. But she’s got the two kids, Elizabeth and Robin, and I’ve got to keep reminding myself to let her have that work/life balance.

I wondered at one time whether you had a soft spot for her.

David: I did. And I do. She’s one in a million. She has my undying gratitude and friendship, but if you’re asking if she has my heart, no. And she wouldn’t want it. She thinks I’m dangerous!

In what way?

David: To tell you the truth I don’t know.   When I asked what she meant she just gave me that gimlet stare and said ‘You don’t change overnight’.  You’ll have to ask her.

Maybe I will.   I’m talking to her soon.  You’d led a pretty free and adventurous life before all this happened. Do you think you’ll be able to settle permanently or do you think you’ll get itchy feet again? What’s so funny?

David: Excuse me while I crack up. What’s so funny? The question. What I’m doing now couldn’t be called anything else but adventurous. It’s just a different kind of adventure and it’s exactly what I want … and what I need. I’d already had enough of my old life, that’s why I came home. Life now is exactly what I want it to be. Or almost, anyway.

You’re talking about Noel.

David: And that’s where this interview ends. Thanks for the coffee, I’ve got to be going.

I wouldn’t be worth my pay grade if I didn’t try. Thanks, and good luck. It was nice to meet you.

Read my interview with Noel Valentine.

You can find IMBROGLIO star David Cameron and read his story in IMBROGLIO

Chris Hemsworth’s IMDb page

@chrishemsworth on Twitter

Chris Hemsworth on Facebook

Meet IMBROGLIO star Noel Valentine

IMBROGLIO star Noel Valentine agreed to this interview with Kathryn E Jones for her blog A river of stones a while back and both Noel and Kathryn have said I can reproduce it here on my blog. Given Noel is the star of my novel IMBROGLIO I’m pleased to be able to add it to my website IMBROGLIO page.

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Hello Noel, lovely to meet you.  Thank you for agreeing to be interviewed. There are so many questions I’d love to ask you about David and why you got involved but that would spoil the surprise for readers who haven’t yet discovered you. So I’m going to keep them general. Would you tell me a little about yourself (where you live, who you are, what you look like, what you hope to achieve, etc.)

My name is Noel Valentine –Alana hijacked my story for her conspiracy mystery thriller IMBROGLIO. I live in a studio apartment in Elisabeth Bay on Sydney Harbour. I work in the city as a PR consultant with William T Hall Advertising. I’m 25, 5’8”, pretty slim, have longish dark hair and my eyes … I like to say topaz with green flecks. These scars on my hands and arms—it’s okay to ask about them—the doctors say they won’t look so bad after a while. It’s only been a few weeks … I was on holiday in Cairns in Queensland and was behind a car that ran off the road down an embankment. It burst into flames. I managed to pull one of the men out but not the other—the police say he was dead already. And I got these burns.

Phoebe Tonkin--
Phoebe Tonkin, the Australian actor the author would choose to play IMBROGLIO star Noel Valentine if a film version were made.
Photo from
Eliz Bay view to seaThe view Noel has from her studio apartment in Elisabeth Bay, Sydney. Photo by Alana Woods

As for aims in life; once it was to be at the top of the PR game but that was before … well, before things went haywire. For the last couple of years it’s just been putting one foot in front of the other every day. But since all that’s happened in the last couple of months I’ve been able to look at the bigger picture again and I have to say that life has improved. I’m thinking that maybe I’ll stick around to grow old after all.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I swim. I find it incredibly relaxing mentally. My father taught me when I was little. Most mornings I’ll swim at Coogee but my parents have a pool and if the weather’s no good I’ll duck over to their place and do a few laps.

Coogee Beach with baths

What is your favorite colour and why?

White. I know people say it isn’t a colour but I like it. It’s not the only colour I wear but it’s what’s predominantly in my wardrobe.

What is your favorite food? Why is it your favorite?

I been known to have fads ☺ Last one was Italian, current one is Thai. Why? The flavours.

What would you say is your biggest quirk?

Gloves! Ever since my hands and arms were burnt. I can’t go into a shop now without making a beeline for the gloves section. The last ones I bought were these lovely little lacy things, like gossamer, but enough to disguise the scars.

What is it about your antagonist that irks you the most, and why?

That would be Nick Donaldson, the lawyer managing Gem Techtronics. Everyone thinks he’s an upstanding pillar of society but he’s a criminal and one day I’ll prove it. And he’s a sleaze, which really is the icing on the cake. He cornered me on his motor cruiser the other night; it was a work thing and I was there with William. Such a sleaze!

 What or who means the most to you in your life? What, if anything, would you do to keep him/her/it in your life?

Family. Definitely. I lost my dad when I was young. Mum remarried a terrific chap. And I have two younger half brothers who drive me insane but I love them to bits. I’d do anything to keep them in my life.

What one thing would you like readers to know about you that may not be spelled out in the book in which you inhabit?

I’m not a manipulative bitch. I know, given what’s happening, there’s a tendency for people to think I am. But, please, look a bit closer at the circumstances and what I’m trying to do before making up your mind about me.

If you could tell your writer (creator) anything about yourself that might turn the direction of the plot, what would it be?

Don’t put me in the water! I can sort out my issues without being put in that kind of life-or-death situation.

Ask me any question. I’ve always wanted to know what a character thinks about writers like myself.

I’ve been wanting to get this off my chest for a while now, ever since I found out Alana had written a warts-and-all about my life without consulting me. Why do writers believe they can do that? Write someone’s story without asking first. And why do they feel entitled to include the most intimate of details; things, at least as far as I’m concerned, I’d never in a million years have revealed to my mother let alone the world.

Noel, thank you so much!

You can find IMBROGLIO star Noel Valentine and read her story in IMBROGLIO

Phoebe Tonkin’s IMDb page


This interview first appeared Kathryn E Jones’ blog A river of stones

Read my interview with David Cameron