After some thought, I decided not to post my Sydney diary to the blog as I did with the Chatauqua diary. This one was too personal, trying to deal with all the stuff that was coming at me, and I'm not one who believes that blogs are for totally spilling your guts!!
Some highlights of the past 10 days, however, include:
- Meeting Tim Winton and talking briefly to him, and also meeting and reading with Sam Wagan Watson. Sam's book of poetry, which won Book of the Year, is great and has sparked off several poems for me.
- Meeting the two publishers, Sharyn November and Marion Lloyd. This reinforced what we know so well but forget - that every editor and publisher is different, they all have particular ideas about what their list is, they all have different tastes, they all have different ideas about what might sell. And they still mostly have to answer to the bean counters and the marketing department.
- Hearing David Fickling (publisher) speak again about his passion for great books. His quote "If you write it, they will come" says to me that I have to write what I feel passionate about, what fascinates me, and keep at it. Never give up.
- Having time on my own to think, wander around Sydney (climb all over a sailing ship the Endeavour), write, think some more, and then think some more. Being at home, even when alone, doesn't somehow allow this.
When I came back to Melbourne and realised that the only publicity was going to be self-generated, I spent nearly a whole day on it, helped along by Victoria University where I teach part-time. Their media dept. was great. Don't ask me about whether the publicists at Penguin did anything...
So no writing, up until yesterday. Then I started a new short story that I am quite excited about. But can I pull it off? It's ambitious. Probably a good thing. And I tell a lie. I have been writing poems.
Now to go back, yet again, to the middle grade novel and work on Draft No. 6.
I plan to update my website this week and include photos. Coming soon...