Thursday, May 07, 2009

My literary space at LiteraryMinded

In the lead up to the Emerging Writers' Festival, Angela Meyer is featuring the 'literary spaces' of writers who'll be appearing at the festival on her excellent blog LiteraryMinded.

My literary space is the latest to be featured. I was asked to respond to the question 'Where do you write?' and basically mused on from there. It's an honest account.

In case you missed my earlier post, I'll be taking part in 'The Best Ways Forward' panel on Sunday 31st May, within the Melbourne Town Hall program at the festival. Looking forward to it...


  1. Did you see the post in the Overland blog about writers spaces? It was funny. I think Angela commented there too. Every idea has an origin I guess. Your space is very neat, where is the ashtray and the whiskey? I am looking forward to your reports on 'The Way Forward' for emerging writers. What happens when you have emerged from where into what? Did you see John Tranter's long incoherent self-indulgent piece of prose with linebreaks in the ALR? I guess his career could be used as a kind of rolemodel for the way forward, well maybe not forward necessarily but in some direction or other. I hope the discussion doesn't revolve entirely about careers and has some ideas about how to reconnect Australian poetry to an audience of nonpoet type readers by making it readable. Ahh, my innocent dreams,

  2. Ha... To be honest I did 'neaten up' the space a little for the photo. So maybe the photo is slightly less honest than the text? As for the ashtray and whisky, I used to be a heavy smoker, and quite a heavy drinker too. Meditation doesn't really go with either, but I still have the occasional drink.

    I'll check up on Tranter's latest.

  3. This was fun to read! Really...writing in the middle of a dancefloor?! I'm amazed you could filter the noise and bodies.

    It's always fun to see where writers work. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Thanks for visiting, Hannah.

    When I've written things in the middle of the dancefloor it's been all about trying to capture the sensory overload, but I suppose there's a kind of 'eye of the storm' aspect to it.

    Going back to Paul's comment about 'how to reconnect Australian poetry to an audience of nonpoet type readers by making it readable'. I'd argue that the places where nonpoet readers are likely to read Australian poetry are awash with 'readable' poetry. Firstly I'm thinking of the two 'Best' anthologies that come out annually. Then you have the likes of The Age, The Australian and ABR, who tend to publish work at the more accessible end of the spectrum (although Gig Ryan's selections for The Age are fairly diverse). And as a matter of fact I think that's true of virtually every major print poetry or literary journal in this country - I'd say the vast majority of what's published in print aims for a not-negligible degree of accessibility. Some journals will publish examples of more experimental, against-the-grain work, but I'd say that's more the exception than the rule. Online there's a slightly different playing field with the likes of Cordite, Otoliths and Jacket, although the latter two tend to publish a considerable amount of work by non-Australian poets, so they don't necessarily fit with the terms of Paul's comment.