Alumni

Lea McInerney

Lea McInerney

‘I did the course, because I wanted to write like a human, not a bureaucrat,’ says Lea McInerney, who completed half corporate subjects and half creative subjects at PWE. Already working as a policy and planning writer, she wanted to write reports, papers and emails in a more accessible way.

The subjects taught by Penny Johnson (editing and corporate writing) were built around the principals of plain English. Lea was engaged by both the content and the teaching, learning to develop a real sensitivity to the client’s needs and helping them gain clarity, while at the same time knowing and insisting that there was a better way to communicate.

‘Out of the confidence gained with PWE, I picked up two amazing gigs that have become long term and ongoing.’

Penny was definitely her inspiration in the course. ‘If I was writing something and thinking, Oh I’ll just take a short-cut, I’d think, “No! What would Penny do?”’ Stephanie Holt also inspired Lea with her incredible eye for detail, while at the same time understanding how the whole industry works. Sian Prior encouraged Lea down a path she didn’t even know she wanted to take …

Lea drafted a piece for Sian’s Journalism class about being unable to find a house to live in. As part of the workshopping process, Sian asked a question that provoked Lea to think about the emotions around this experience, which ‘really opened up the piece for me. It got published in The Age. That was fun!’

The Griffith Review is a journal Lea loved when she was studying that she held up as somewhere she’d like to be published. And she did! She’s still being contacted about her first essay published in 2013, drawing on her nursing experience, about death and grief.

Lea appreciated PWE’s celebration of writing, while at the same time being encouraged to strive.

Find out more about Lea at leamcinerney.com.

This profile was written and researched by Ann Bolch from A Story To Tell.