A is for April

1. It occurred to me that so much of writing is waiting: waiting for ideas to come, or the next scene; waiting to see whether publishers like your latest offering; whether readers like it. Writing is, in this sense, the antithesis of modern life, modern communication, which is all instant, and rarely cause for pondering or reflection.

Peripherally related to this: at the recent Perth Writers Festival, one of the guests at the opening party talked about hard-copy publishers as legacy publishers, implying, perhaps, that they were going the way of dinosaurs. But such publishing, like writing, will always have its place, I think, even if its role changes. Hardcopy books invite slow contemplation in a way ebooks don’t (regardless of subject matter – who’s with me?!). Not all stories require contemplation to be effective, but it is one of the things that matters to me.

2. The book I’m writing with the incomparable Patricia McMahon continues to be a joy, and, not only that, but we’re getting closer to the/an end. The manuscript is fattening, and we’re still bristling with new ideas.

3. I’ve just finished reading Christos Tsiolkas’ Barracuda. It took me months to get through it: I wanted to savour every chapter. Has anybody else read it? It was thought-provoking at every conceivable level. Today the Miles Franklin long list was released, and it didn’t appear, which is baffling to me. (Maybe, as happened to one of my favourite YA books of last year, the publisher didn’t submit it?) Anybody else read it?

4. We’ve been getting out of the city on the weekends lately: visiting places not-too-far-away. Here is a picture of the moonscape-like Pinnacles. I’d never been there before – I’d always had the impression it would be underwhelming. It was not.

5. Life has been stressful lately, but I am lucky to work with great folks, with great ideas. Like, visiting new bars like Bobeche on a Friday night. Which serves a kind of tea I heartily approve of:

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