I am back from Children's Book Week in Melbourne, having seen parts of the city and suburbs never before encountered, and boggled again at the variety of the place, and marvelled again at the wonderfulness of the inner city - the laneways, ACMI, the restaurants, the bookshops. Marvelled in a less good way about how fricken cold it was, but it's Melbourne in winter, so you get that. I had thought-provoking gigs at Beaconhills Christian College in Packenham, Thomastown Secondary College, the Academy of Mary Immaculate in Fitzroy and MacRobertson's Girls High School - the schools filled with vastly different kinds of kids, but all attentive and alert. It was a lovely change, being able to be a Writer all week, and had productive and gorgeous meetings with my editors and publisher. Still searching for a name for the virginity novel, so if you have one that might to do the trick, please submit (note: it's for upper high school, needless to say, and the V Girls is its working title, but we want something that captures the essence of the novel. I know, hard work, isn't it?)
Now I am back, cooking chicken soup to drive away what may or may not turn out to be the flu. And yes, for those of you wondering, I did wear my mask to and from Melbourne (although removed it on the way back to talk to witty fellow-traveller Jon Doust). It worked, but gee I got some looks. I did find out that my habit of whipping out the alcohol gel is very Noo York, so there. Better cosmopolitan than neurotic, I always say.