Category Archives: Books

Life is easy to chronicle, but bewildering to practice*

God, hasn’t it been a while? I don’t think I’ve ever gone this long without posting. I started several posts over the past months but all of them were bullshit.

I was thinking about blogging yesterday, and why we read blogs and why we write them.

For me, there are two types of blogger. The one who shows you the sweetened condensed version of life, the one who skates over the nasty sinkholes in life, and reading their blog is like dipping your hot feet into a cool stream. You want their peaches and cream life, and the simple perfection of their Instagram-worthy moments.

Then there are the bloggers who are brutally honest about those potholes. They tell you about the nasty shadows that live down there and warn you about what will happen if fall in. They are in and out of those potholes, and reading their posts is painful and addictive. You want to help them, you worry for them, but you can’t read them often because their lives are just so deeply difficult.

I don’t know where my blog fits into that. I don’t have a brand. I should have one, according to publishers and so on, but I don’t because my life is a shift between refreshing cool streams and dark sinkholes.

I could tell you about the past few months of moving house, and not really liking it here because it’s not for very long, and the neighbors are fuckwits, one of whom quoted local council by-laws at me the day we moved in, or the one across the road who drove into a friends car and then took off without a note or word.

And I could tell you about writing four scripts for TV shows and loving every single minute of it, and being able to work with my dear friend Edwina Exton, which is us just drinking cup of tea and laughing at each other and then writing down the jokes. And how I wonder if I will ever be asked to write more.

I could tell you about deeply personal struggles that I’m still wrestling with, but I don’t want to give them any airtime.

I could tell you about my sweetpeas which have finally blossomed and the baby raven we have been feeding who now plays with Bert the dog in the back yard.

I could tell you about the three ideas I have for screen and book form, but then in the next sentence tell you I doubt that I will ever have any good ideas again.

I could tell you about my new job and how much I love the work, and in the next breath tell you I think everyone hates me and that I will be fired at any minute.

I could tell you about my perfect Saturday, pottering, resting, reading, cooking, but you won’t know that upstairs a loved one was sicker than I’ve seen in a long time, and my day was spent with one ear open for their calls from above.

I could tell you about how proud I am about my new book, and I know it’s the best one I’ve written, while knowing it’s not selling as it deserves due to decisions out of my hands.

I could tell you about the Saturday night I spent in a hospital, worrying for a friend of my kid, and the gratefulness I felt for my daughter coming to the hospital at 3am to wait with me. The juxtaposition of her winged eyeliner and her diamonte choker and hooped earring, against the stark walls, made the nurses smile as they passed her in the hallway.

I could tell you about the TV series I sold, and how I worry what they will do with it and if my ideas will be pushed aside.

And finally, I could tell you about the excitement of my girl heading overseas and applying for university interstate, and the overwhelming sense of loss that looms when I think of her not being in my house anymore.  That even writing that sentence caused my eyes to burn with hot tears.

This is life. Peaches and cream, and sinkholes galore.  I have come to learn about darkness and light in every moment.  Standing by my father’s body was the most painful yet beautiful moment. The deep love I got to share with my family over the eleven weeks of his illness was incredible. Seeing the astonishing love, support, and friendship that have surrounded friends who have had awful and invasive cancer in their lives making them feel so alone,  illustrates the dichotomy of life.

While I don’t know if anyone even reads this blog anymore, and I don’t say that so people tell me otherwise, there is so much on the web, why check in on a dormant blog, I do know it’s good for to read about other people’s lives for reference, especially when they’re honest about the sludgy moments and those confetti filled days.

So here I am again. One blog post at a time. One sinkhole and peach pie at a time.

It’s good to be back.

Happy Monday.

 

  • Title by E.M. Forster from A Room With A View.

What next?

 

Finishing a book brings odd feelings. First you hope your editor forgives any typos throughout, and then you hope you served the characters well. Did they end up where they hoped? Was justice served? Did insight happen? Will my readers be entertained? And last of all...is it a banger? 😉

This past six months was the longest time I have spent writing a book,  and since my beautiful editor gave me time and space to write the book, I wrote what I wanted to read. Having the extra time allowed to keep working the day job, develop a TV series, and care for my family through a tough year. This book ended up becoming an escape for me from the above life, which is what books should be, and I don’t think it doesn’t matter if you write them or read them as long as they take you away.

Ten minutes after finished the book, I messaged Dave, and my agent to say I’d delivered a healthy 410-page book named Daphné Le Marche, I sat and thought, ‘what next?’

I am supposed to have another one in the planning stages, but I don’t know what the story is yet, or any characters, nor a setting. So basically, I don’t have a book but I don’t want to be too pedantic about it.

I need to refill the well of creativity. Yes, that sound very pretentious, but think of it like a craft box filled with gorgeous scraps of loveliness and bits of pleasure. My pandora’s box is empty and I have to replenish the vessel.

How do I do that?

I read.

Yep. I will read between 8-10 books between now and the New Year. I will read the backlog of magazines sitting on my iPad, waiting to be opened. I will read poetry, and revisit old journals of ideas. I will look at Pinterest, and Tumblr and visit libraries. I will reread childhood classics. I’ve had a yearning to reread The Secret of Spiggy Holes, which belonged to my Mum.

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I’m going to wait to see who wants me to tell their story and then I will get cracking again. Bring it on.

2016 is going to be exciting in a good way. I can feel it in my waters.

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