Fabulous February News

by | Feb 26, 2020

Dear Reader, it has been an eventful time between last entry and this.

But before I give further details on the nature of the eventfulness, the Fabulous News is this:

Maddie in the Middle is a 2020 Children’s Book Council of Australia Notable Book, in and among a record field of entries!

I am so grateful to Fremantle Press and the CBCA for giving Maddie her chance to shine.

I am also utterly delighted to be on the Notable list with fellow Freo Press creators Holden Sheppard and Kelly Canby (whose name in my opinion invites an echo – Kelly Canby, Kelly Canby, Kelly Canby – no? Just me?), as well as our fellow Western Australians Megsy Caddy, Meg McKinlay (twice, as usual), Sally Morgan, Karen Blair, Michael Speechley and Briony Stewart.

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This news followed the most fabulous Literature and Ideas weekend (formerly Perth Writers Festival) during which I communed with my writing tribe, met new members of the same, and fangirled Christos Tsiolkas and Rick MortonA J Betts (whose Rogue should also have been on the Notable list, just by-the-by) and I had a great talk on controversy (Prince earworm) and then I was interviewed alongside Ingrid Laguna by our Curated by Kids hosts.

However (see above), when I got the news of Maddie’s Notable listing, the first person I wanted to call was my Mum. Which I could not do, as she died after a sudden and horrible illness on Boxing Day (having very thoughtfully delayed her exit so as not to coincide with my daughter’s birthday mere days before). A friend said to me that losing a parent is like having a nuclear bomb go off in your brain, and this is apropos.

My childhood best friend said: ‘Right now you are carrying a sack of boulders. One day it will be a small pouch full of precious jewels. But the rocks have to pound each other and you first, and let them. Grief knows what it is doing.’

Mum told me to remember the good times, and I suppose at some point I will be able to with some equanimity. In between times, love, friendship, kindness and yoga are getting me through. And this new addition to our family also:Woman holds dog


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