Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Reading the Writing

Last night I read extracts from chapter one of Alzheimer's: a Love Story at the third Wheeler Centre Debut Monday. The other three writers on the night were an energetic young philosopher, an American born novelist and a loud performance poet. They were all amazing - talented, polished and confident. Beforehand we hung out in the Green Room, chatting about writing-related topics -such as the fun for young parents of leaving children with grandparents, and how good Russell Crowe's American accent is. (This second issue has puzzled me for some time now: given that we Aussies can pick a fake Australian accent in a second, does Russell Crowe's American accent convince an American? According to the author of Dancing Backwards in High Heels it does.)

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the evening. Most of my time as a writer is spent refusing invitations. I am desperate for solitude, hate the phone and other interruptions, crave the company of my own thoughts. But last night I loved the performance aspect, hearing the audience react when I hammed up a line or played up the pathos of a situation. And I had a ball afterwards, chatting with my writer friends who'd come to cheer me on.

I'd describe myself as a shyish person, so I was surprised by how much fun I had. And I get to do it all over again tomorrow night at the Sandybeach Centre in Sims Street Sandringham when I'll be delivering a talk about my book. I'm sure I'll be nervous at the time, but right now I'm looking forward to it a lot. Meeting readers and discussing my book with them - what could be nicer!

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