Thursday, March 3, 2011

Bris-Vegas research day 5:

What I am grateful for today:
1. RIVERBEND BOOKS & TEAHOUSE: I made my first trip to the Bulimba icon today, having a divine breakfast with owner Suzy Wilson (who also established the Riverbend Readers’ Challenge which grew into the Indigenous Literacy Project). What a wonderful way to start any day, sitting on the deck and devouring corn fritters, stuffed mushrooms, French toast with pears, almonds and Buffalo ricotta, and any number of delicious teas. I’ve never been to a gourmet bookshop before! Around me were local mothers yarning over coffee, businessmen having meetings, book lovers checking out their latest literary love. In between tantalising my taste-buds, Suzy, Frane and I talked books and events. (Pics of Suzy and Frane below)

Inside the store, I was greeted by cheerful, friendly staff as I marvelled at the groovy tee-shirts on sale, the vast collection of children’s books, and my own strategically position novels. I’ve signed them, so pop on over and grab one! And if you are Gen Y and reading this and want to be part of a bookclub then check out the YRead Bookclub at Riverben Books. Today I am incredibly grateful for bookshops like Riverbend that provide personal service, books across every genre and great coffee. My morning there inspired me even more as a writer and I can’t wait to go back. Maybe we could have the Beachbend Bookshop in Sydney one day?! Below Suzy, Kate and moi!

2. THINKING TIME: Every writer will tell you something different in terms of the most important aspect of their writing process. For me, it’s not the actual physical writing, but the THINKING time I need to consider characters, settings, storylines and so on. Today, I am grateful for the time I gave myself just to ‘think’ about what’s going to happen in my new Brisbane-based novel.

3. FLOATING TIME: I’m grateful I took the opportunity to think while floating in the pool where I am staying at Kangaroo Point. The pic above is the view from the pool. Terrible isn’t it? I mean, how could I find any creative inspiration at all looking at that scene for any length of time!? Yes, this is the writerly life, well, my writerly life anyway! On days like today, I am SO glad I set myself the goal some years ago to be a full-time writer, because now, here I am!

You’ve heard and seen a lot of Frane on my blog this week and in the past. Of course, she generously blogged her gratefuls in Japan recently. Today though, I am grateful for the presentation Frane gave at a SCWBI event held at the QWC in the SLQLD. There’s a few acronyms for you to check out! From her humble beginnings as an artist in Montserrat to her award-winning illustrious illustrating life now, Frane inspired the audience with her artwork that bears resemblance to that of Rousseau and Matisse. A book that influenced Frane was Paint as you like and die happy: the paintings of Henry Miller. I’m grateful for the inspiration I gained from hearing how Frane researches her books and works alongside her husband Mark Greenwood. Their most recent books being Ned Kelly and the Green Sash and Simpson and his Donkey. I’m also grateful to local writers Sheryl Gwyther (pictured below) and Angela Sunde who support writers and illustrators who visit this fine city.

And... one more grateful here... I caught up with the gorgeous Narelle Oliver whom I met at the Children’s Literature in the Centre festival last August in Alice Springs. Pic of Frane, Narelle and I above.

5. THE MUSE: The muse got pulled over by the police and breathalysed. I’m grateful he doesn't drink. I need a driver here in Brisbane!


Sheryl Gwyther said...

It was our very great pleasure, Anita. Love seeing you visit our city - we don't even mind if you make it your second home! :P

Dr Anita Heiss said...

Thanks Sheryl - had a ball in your town. Am so glad I chose it as the setting for the next book. Might be a SCWBI scene in it somewhere! :)
Was great to see you, catch you in April. Anita