Next week there’s another ‘Spineless Wonders presents…’ event in Adelaide. I love being a part of this gig – local actors read short stories by Australian authors while we sit back and sample the Wheaty’s featured brews. Can’t think of anything wrong with that. Come early – it was standing room only last time.
Two days after that I’ll be heading up to Darwin to participate in Wordstorm and the Australian Poetry Festival. Looking forward very much to reconnecting with the Territory and its amazing writers, as well as all those impressive guests. I’m running a workshop on the Saturday morning, spreading a little more of the short story joy. Book in early as numbers are strictly limited. There will also be readings, panels etc aplenty.
After that I go directly to a three-week residency at Bundanon, with a side trip to Sydney (more on that later). I’ll be watching for wombats and sniffing the residual paint fumes in Arthur Boyd’s studio and generally putting my head down and wrestling with the new book.
It’s odd thinking about this book as the book I thought I’d be writing this time last year, when I applied to Bundanon. I’m still writing it, but after a long hiatus to work on other things (like the short story collection) it’s taken on quite an odd shape: a huge, unwieldy, gaseous-planet type shape. It looms at me. I’ve started calling it Jupiter.
Methane hurricanes! Ice moons! Sky gods, by Jove!
It’s humbling to realise (again) that this is how it is going to be – that writing is always going to feel out of control and unmanageable, no matter how much I try to make it easy for myself. I’ve actually been thinking about it as a kind of essential clumsiness, that the stumbling and fear are part of unlocking that subconscious creative force, which is accidental by nature. I’m enjoying the work, and all its bruising revelations. But it’s a long way off where it began, and a long way away from where it’ll end. I’m just trying to take it one little storm at a time.
(image via hubblesite)