Stacy grew up out west on a remote sheep station west of Cunnamulla, Queensland.
‘I was most fortunate,’ she says. ‘I got to get up close and personal with nature from an early age and revelled in her profundity and her whimsy. I also had parents who instilled in me a love for words, reading, big ideas and art.’
At age six, Stacy went to boarding school in Cunnamulla, and later in Toowoomba, where she discovered the world of people and she began to pay attention to what they did and how they interacted.
After school, Stacy got on with the business of life—she studied science, education and career development at university; married Richard; had three children and lots of pets; loved deeply; travelled to remote and curious places; walked and talked and read and wondered, lived in Toowoomba, Brisbane, north Queensland, Perth; worked as a shearers’ cook, waitress, scientific research assistant, high school teacher, and careers counsellor; battled cancer and other demons; published two books …
Her early love of nature, words, reading, big ideas, art and people are still with her, leading her always toward her own unique, multi-layered peculiar.
When I was diagnosed with cancer,
people—and the media—kept telling me
how important it was to be optimistic and
have a great attitude. Usually, I consider
myself to be a positive, optimistic person
but how was I supposed to have a great attitude when I had all these negative voices in
my head telling me I wasn’t enough—loved
enough, lucky enough, strong enough?
I began to think of these voices as the
“committee in my head”, as described by
When the committee found out about my
cancer, all hell broke loose. They started running around chewing on pencils,
pushing spectacles onto their foreheads,
and wringing their hands. Everyone was
talking at once, throwing hands into the
air, and trying to shout over each other. Some became so hysterical that their
only contribution was to hold their face
between their hands and moan, ‘You’re
going to die. You’re going to die.
Australian Television Host
This book is beautiful. It’s raw, it’s honest,
but most of all—it’s inspiring. Stacy shares
the truth behind her journey, and I feel incredibly humbled that she found comfort
in my words, as much as I have now found
comfort in hers. This book connects us
all. It’s not only for those that have been
through breast cancer but for anyone that
just needs a reminder that they are braver
than they think … and Stacy shows us exactly that. A truly amazing read.
Pauline Waugh, Goodreads
Stacy’s characters come to life as surely as if they were one’s next-door neighbours. After the Flood is a must-read debut novel, and Stacy’s readers will no doubt eagerly await her next literary effort.
Author, CEO/Founder of iDareU
I ADORED this book. I was with Stacy through
every frightening, funny, reflective, and powerful step of her journey; at the same time, I was on
my own journey of self-reflection and discovery.
This is a wonderful tool for people who are going
through or have been through cancer but regardless of a person’s circumstances, I think it is a great
read for just about anyone.
Stacy's thoughts about creativity and being an author
Stacy’s debut novel, After the Flood, was published in 2019 and her memoir, Breastless, was released in 2021.
Stacy has always been an observer of life, a feeler of feelings, a dreamer of possibilities and a creator of other worlds. She loves the challenge of finding words to express her observations, feelings, dreams and inner creations and this has led her to read many great books on writing. In 2020, she discovered Elizabeth Gilbert’s wonderful book, Big Magic, Creative Living Beyond Fear, and her podcast series, Magic Lessons. This was a serious ah-ha moment for her as she began to understand her own creativity in a whole new way. In her book, Elizabeth talks about the poet David Whyte who calls this call to creativity 'the arrogance of belonging,' and claims that it is ‘an absolutely vital privilege to cultivate if you wish to interact more vividly with life. Without this arrogance of belonging, you will never be able to take any creative risks whatsoever. Without it, you will never push yourself out of the suffocating insulation of personal safety and into the frontiers of the beautiful and unexpected. Because often what keeps you from creative living is your self-doubt, your self-disgust, your self-judgment, your crushing sense of self-protection.’
If someone is excited because they’ve painted a picture or written a book or done some other creative thing, I want to share in their joy. It doesn’t matter if I think what they have done is good or bad – there is no good or bad when it comes to creativity. If a person has or is experiencing the joy of creating, then it is always good. This is what I believe. I ask you this – who should get to decide if art is good or bad? In Brene Brown’s well-known research into shame, she found that 50% of people experienced shame about their creativity as children. Most, like me, will abandon creativity once they feel this shame. I ask you this - what hope is there for the human race if we don’t open our hearts to the creative process and put our focus there rather than simply on what the end product might look like or sound like.
One of Stacy’s favourite quotes, by Terri Wendling, is -
Community, friendship, art: stirred together, they make a powerful magic. Used wisely, it can save your life. I know that it saved mine.
― Terri Windling, Welcome to Bordertown