Renee lives in Alice Springs with her husband, four children, and their wonder dog August. By day she is a social worker, currently working in a challenging and satisfying role in child protection that aims to improve professional practice and get real outcomes for families (in particular children) within the Northern Territory child welfare sector. By night, when her children finally go to sleep, she is a passionate writer who makes sense of life through words on a page. Sometimes she write short amusing pieces on mothering and life and sends them out into the mummy blogger sphere, but her passion and focus have primarily been on writing books.
In 2017, her first book, ‘The House of Lies was published by Hachette and enjoyed great success. Unravelling Us is her follow up and answers many of the questions her fans always ask her.
11 questions in 11 minutes - get to know Renee McBryde
- What is your idea of bliss?
- What is the trait you least like about yourself?
- What do you consider to be the most overrated virtues?
- Greatest regret?
- Who would be your nemesis?
- Which talent would you most like to have?
- Biggest dislike?
- Qualities you admire in a man?
- Qualities you admire in a woman?
- What is your best characteristic?
- What would your motto be?
For me, bliss is all the little moments in a day or week or month that make my heart shout Yay! You know those fleeting moments where the suns warming your face at the beach, or the stars are twinkling and everyone you are with are laughing at something silly that no one will remember later? Bliss is that moment when I’m driving with the window down and my favourite song comes on…or the dog and I are cuddling on the lounge, or the kids are all singing a song and smiling at the same time. They are always brief small moments, before real life takes back over again, but these little moments imprint themselves so much when they are happening that you catch yourself thinking – this is the best, I’m feeling so happy.
Bliss – see also: firm massages and silent reading in a clean house.
I can’t stand awkward silences and I always succumb to filling them…. and then I end up seeming like the really socially awkward one who can’t shut up!
In theory I think all the virtues in good measure serve to make people and the world better, but right now what I think is overrated is the obsession with virtue signalling! It is somehow now a real thing to shout from the rooftops one’s moral excellence by partaking in things like cancel culture and shaming people publicly when they make mistakes. I hate that online pile-ons, bullying, misinformation and scare tactics are being portrayed as passion for social change and activism.
No regrets – just lessons learned!
But if pressed on a lesson learned that I still think about, it would be this: When I was about 8 my Nan took me to a huge Young Talent Time Concert in the city and somehow,I was called up on stage because I won this amazing YTT guitar, but I was too shy to go up on stage and collect it! I really, really wanted it and I was trying to coax myself to go up or even just put my hand up to say “that’s me, that’s my name,” but I was too scared and my Nan was too shy too, so I just sat there and eventually they gave it to another little girl. I still think about that fear stopping me from reaching out for something I really wanted and was right there for the taking.
My nemesis is that voice in my head telling me that I’m failing, I’m not enough, I’m getting it wrong. I really hate her!
I’m what you’d call a jack of all trades, master of none, so I’d be happy to be really great at anything – maybe like a whizz bang chef or actually I’d love to be able to sew– I have an obsession with dresses so being a great sewer would be very handy!
I can’t stand women who bring other women down. And any type of meat in a can – yuck!
Being funny, compassionate, curious, smart and having a wild side.
Same as the above admirable man qualities but with a side of kick -arse “I am woman hear me roar” type vibe.
I’m a warm human with a lot of love to go ‘round.
You only live once – so do it all.