Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Who's afraid of a new laptop?

Holey Moley but I am slack. This is an ongoing theme. Another deadline has been and gone, another 40th has been attended (this time in Bangalow, NSW, near the glorious but oh-so-rainy Byron Bay) and a new financial year diary has been started. Oh how I love the end of the financial year ... such a good excuse to buy new stationery. Of course, the thing I need more in life is excuses to faff around with filing, new pens and stationery!

I also have my new – dribble dribble – HP laptop which is shiny and fabulous but which has not been hooked up yet. It’s been almost six years since the old Toshiba I’m banging on now first entered my life. The arrival of the new ‘portal to the virtual world’ is quite a watershed. The Toshiba was my big purchase to launch my life as a freelancer and a self employed gal. It got dropped on the floor and damaged in the first weeks while it lived with me for three months in a granny flat in Byron Bay and it has done some rounds since then but, in recent times, it has been anchored to the desk in my sun room and it has churned out the work that I realised today has culminated in a whopping 288 or so invoices. There is probably more but I did not have my handmade invoice system quite refined. So … what will a new laptop bring? Bloody digital TV viewing for a start! And what does that say about the development of my bumbling career? That I am more interested in watching telly than working perhaps?

So … Edward Albee was on the 7.30 Report the other night. I confess I did not even realise he was still alive. Came across as a very civilised (81-year-old) man. Hard beginnings - adopted by a family who seemed to have no understanding of him and for whom he felt little affection. You don't hear people admit to that often ... everyone these days is too busy talking about being grateful and bla bla. He did acknowledge that they'd provided him with a fine education and the worth of that could not be measured. My folks - whom I did feel a great bond to and who did not adopt me but had me forced upon them by the good Lord himself (or the bloke down below depending on who you talk to) - also directed their funds into my schooling rather than buying a home and other grand investments and I have always, always, felt that that was money well spent and put me on a path of abundance they could never have imagined.

Apparently Albee is in Australia to conduct script development workshops. Man how do you find out about such things and which lucky sons of bitches get to go? I confess I've only read Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf. Such a pleb I am!

Albee was particularly erudite on the topic of race relations in the USA. He once wrote The Death of Bessie Smith, based on a night in Memphis in the 30s when a celebrated blues singers bled to death after a car accident because a white hospital refused to treat her. I've just done my favourite thing and placed an order on Amazon for the play so stay tuned. I haven't read a play since The Little Foxes. Should be fun.

Should I mention the passing of Michael J? Everyone else is ... I'll just say that on Friday night Mrs Peters and I cut the rug to a bit of Jackson 5 in the loungeroom and I did do a memorial moon walk in the office last week, just to show my respect you understand. (And, of course, Farrah died and we all know the impact the hairy one had on me recently.)

Back to bookish topics, have you heard about BookCrossing where people leave perfectly good books lying around in public spaces to be read, shared and passed on anonymously to anyone, anywhere? I heard about it on The Book Show, of course.

Here's the organisation's spiel should you be interested:
BookCrossing is earth-friendly and gives you a way to share your books, clear your shelves and conserve precious resources at the same time. Through our own unique method of recycling reads, BookCrossers give life to books. A book registered on BookCrossing is ready for adventure.Leave it on a park bench, a coffee shop, at a hotel on vacation. Share it with a friend or tuck it onto a bookshelf at the gym -- anywhere it might find a new reader! What happens next is up to fate, and we never know where our books might travel. Track the book's journey around the world as it is passed on from person to person.

Cool huh?

Monday, June 15, 2009

Time travelling

I am so bad. I mean, how long was the last time I wrote here - about 800 years ago? So much has happened. So much does happen doesn't it? Unless you're locked up in an iron lung somewhere.

I mean almost a month has gone past since I bleated and blogged. I know I only do this for myself but surely I could be a more faithful and dedicated correspondent to me, my one and only reader.

Everyone says you have to keep blog posts brief. I make it a habit to listen to everyone and believe all that they say. So, in a snapshot, recent writerly connected activities include:
  • The writing of my final folio piece for my RMIT 'Introduction To Fiction Writing' short course (we also presented it in front of an RMIT big wig and now I must decide if I will enrol in Professional Writing and Editing next year and actually try and pen a novel).
  • A small piece by moi in Epicure, The Age, about the Henry Jones Hotel
  • The writing of a press release and the various hawking of it to get coverage for The Rehe Family Benefit we recently held. See Patsy Fox - aka illustrator Angie Rehe's - artistic presentation of moi above. Her pencil flatters and lies but it's nice to be immortalised like this. Angie I have blatantly stolen this from your site!
  • Interview after interview for the September issue of Get Creative magazine (find out about Biddy Bags here for instance)
  • The writing of a media release for Circa, The Prince


  • The finishing (finally) of Middlesex for the Mrs Underhill Book Club - so heads up book club members ... let's pull our arses into line to get some discussions happening. I need a vote on whether we stick to online only or gather for an 'on wine and on cheese' format. Get it? Genius hey?

As usual I am behind on everything and the emails and so forth are piling up. My attendance at the Cleary Horror Seminar has led to a group challenge to write a thriller horror piece - I have nightmares regularly so this should be a shoo in* - and the RMIT class has turned into a fortnightly Tuesday night writing class at The Victorian Writers Centre.

Life is kind and good to me, so much so that I feel forced to head up to Byron Bay the minute I close my computer from this deadline and flop there for my bestie's 40th. Spoiled? Me? So?

*PS: Shoo in = was originally a racetrack term, and was (and still is) applied to a horse expected to easily win a race, and, by extension, to any contestant expected to win an easy victory (Find out more at www.word-detective.com)