Sunday, April 17, 2011

Readers and radio hosts– I am grateful...

I’m finally in the swing of the Paris Dreaming book tour and having some fun meeting my readers and yarning with broadcasters. Tonight I’d like to acknowledge those venues, individuals and media who have supported me over the years and particularly with the release of my new book.

Many of you will be aware that I am currently in legal proceedings with one element of the media and can’t comment on it here, but you may like to read the words of Martin Flanagan in his column Saturday Reflections.

Right now, I’m looking forward to another week of meeting more readers and finding out why they like to engage with my characters and storylines.

Tonight, I acknowledge and am grateful for:

1. CRONULLA LIBRARY: I’m grateful not only to the staff at Cronulla library, and the local Berkelouw Books for coming along, but also all the wonderful readers, mainly from ‘The Shire’ who came along to hear about the journey of Libby Cutmore and her internationalisation of Indigenous art. At the library – with memories of the Cronulla race riots behind us - we laughed together, we yarned, we signed books and took some photos. It was a wonderful way to spend Tuesday night, and it makes me smile now writing about it.

2. UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN SYDNEY: UWS is my Alma Mata, and I am proud to be associated with the Badanami Centre for Indigenous Education as an Adjunct Association Professor (this is unpaid). I’m glad I chose UWS to do my doctoral studies, graduating in 2001. Because I had such a positive experience there, I am always happy to return to any one of the five campuses to speak to students, staff and anyone else who chooses to come along. I am grateful to Connect Books who coordinated my visit this week, where I delivered a lecture on writing commercial women’s fiction with Aboriginal themes and yarned with writerly and publishing types like the gorgeous Gail Jones and Ivor Indyk. Pic above is of Emma Joel who came all the way from Newcastle AND brought me homemade caramel slice. Ok, so she may just be my favourite reader!

3. JAMES VALENTINE: I debated James Valentine at the CBCA Conference in Sydney in 2006. The topic was ‘The movie is better than the book.’ The bulk of the voting audience was made up of teacher / librarians so it’s no surprise that James’ side FOR the book won! I think I am still a little scarred by that debate... but I’ll get over it, eventually. In the meantime, I’m grateful to James for the yarn we had on his popular program Afternoons. If you missed the program, you can listen to it here.

I’ve lost track of how many interviews I’ve done with Rhianna Patrick (pic above taken at the ABC) but they are always in-depth and entertaining, because she has always read the book she interviews me about. And trust me, it makes a difference. This week I got to yarn with her on Speaking Out and I am grateful for her time and professionalism.

5. BRUNCH WITH SIMON MARNIE: It was such a fantastic way to start Sunday, having brunch with Simon Marnie. Simon is a warm, well-researched, interested and engaging interviewer, and he can come over for brunch any day. If you missed our conversation which includes three of my fave books, songs and movies right now, you can listen to it on-line here. Pic above of Simon and I in front of my bookcase at home.

6. JULIE MCROSSIN: Okay, so it wasn’t a radio interview, but I just adore Julie. She’s a supporter of the Indigenous Literacy Project and a barrel of fun when it comes to having a yarn for QANTAS Inflight and 'Up and Away'. We had a yarn this week and it will be piping through the armrests of QANTAS flights in June this year. Pic of Ms J and I above.

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