1. Sometimes words are not sufficient, even for a writer. Last month, I lost a woman who meant more to me than she could know, although I tried and failed to explain it to her on many occasions. She was my substitute mother, an unjudging ear, my pole star in times of flux. She was a role model: her gusto for life and her generous heart were unparalleled. I loved her without reservation, and I do not quite understand yet that the next time I go to Melbourne, she won’t be waiting for me at the airport, ready to hear the news from WA. She was the Marianne in Bye, Beautiful, though she thought she was Sandy; she was fearless and loyal and always open to new things, new ways of thinking; she lived her life fully and not one person had a bad word to say about her. My cousins and I danced under the stars at her wake: she would have joined us, if she could have.
2. I am no longer Usher of the Black Rod: I have relinquished the position for personal reasons, but I will miss the role and the get-up (see below). My new title is rather less sexy, and I will miss waving my black stick around.
3. I am about to head north, to visit places I have not seen since I was a child. I am stupid excited about this.
4. My/our new work-in-progress, Lark (sings) Jaz, written in partnership with the wondrous Patricia McMahon, got its first public airing in the chapel at Rottnest at the annual SCBWI retreat. We were exceedingly gratified by the response we had. I didn’t realise how much fun it is to write with others. (Tony Eaton, are you listening?!)
5. Perth is funking up: a bunch of us did this tour with Two Feet and a Heartbeat on Saturday night and had a ball. Do yourselves a favour and see your city with new eyes.