Sunday, September 19, 2010

Lower Picnic Area content alert*

*This post contains references not suitable for children or the easily offended.

The wonderful and with-it Simmone Howell put me onto this blog, which contains stories of various girls' and women's First Times.  The sheer range of experience is moving, thought provoking and fascinating.  I wish I'd read it before I wrote The Virginity Book (like that title?), although I have to say, I had no shortage of source material from my friends and colleagues, which generally flowed more freely after the consumption of wine.  When the novel comes out, I'd like to collect one-sentence descriptions of FTs, so start thinking about that one.  (Yes, you'll be anonymous.  I promise).

And speaking of vaginas, watch this.  I'm still laughing.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Things various

Some thoughts:
1.  After my decision to quit YA, I thought I'd be relieved.  Instead, I felt depressed (and also really touched by the sweet responses I had from folk - thank you).  I'm not sure what kind of perversity it is, to want to do something you have no time to do, but there it is.  I wanted a resolution.  There is none.
2.  It is spring, and I have daffodils.  I planted the bulbs, and was convinced they had failed.  Then one day there were green shoots.  A few weeks after that, glorious, heavy-headed flowers.
3.  On the weekend I had brunch in a cafe in Kings Park with writing buddies Kirsty Murray and Patricia McMahon; a Health PR reunion, replete with singing and percussion; and a catchup with some women I worked with at Parliament.  Last week one of the guys I worked with at Health died suddenly, and the only good thing to come out of the shock was to make me realise how important it is to celebrate the friendships we have, to be grateful for those still with us - to make sure, in the busy-ness of days, there is time for what matters. 
4.  I have a day off today, to walk on the beach, sit in silence, listen.
5.  Kirsty suggested the novel be called The Virginity Book.  What do you think?

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The end of the line

Wordle: V girls

This is the first couple of chapters of the V novel, put into Wordle (thanks to Meg McKinlay).

Neat, huh?

It seems to me as if I've been writing this novel forever, and one of the things to come out of my editorial meeting was the decision to push back (to coin a phrase) the publication date to early 2012 (as my publisher said, it's not exactly a stocking filler :)).  The pressure of day job means that I can't do the book justice otherwise, so I am both a bit sad and relieved to have some more time. And I think that unless something extraordinary happens (like Lotto), this will be my last YA novel, as I can't continue to try to write such complicated, long work amidst the rest of my life: I have run out of steam, and have got to the point where effort far outstrips rewards. I am satisfied with the YA novels I've produced, and now need to be realistic about what is possible, given all the other constraints I have. So I want to go out with a bang - and to do it right.