I have just finished the copyedit for the above novel. It's a very exacting process and I am happy to be head-ache free at last. The next job will be the proof-read and then my favourite part, the cover. I loved the cover for Mercy Street so here's hoping. I am starting an new tag for Banjo Crossing and will put all further news there.
I'm so happy that Harper Collins are going to publish my new book 'The Ballad of Banjo Crossing.' More news when I know more myself.
Today my friend Maria invited me to afternoon tea at her house where she and other friends, Mary and Bernadette, had a wonderful spread which included sausage rolls, cocktail frankfurts, fairy bread, choc wedges and cupcakes. All was set up like Rory’s party from Mercy Street. We even had party hats, balloons and a game of pass the parcel.
This continues the tradition which started with ‘Book of Lost Threads’ (a High Tea) and ‘The Memory Tree’ (a Vietnamese lunch).
I shall continue to put food in my books – I’d be crazy not to. (You may well find a pavlova in the next one as Maria is a great pavlova maker.)
Oh. And there were balloons and lolly bags to take home. What a great group of friends!
Yesterday I recorded an interview by Jan Goldsmith on 3CR’s Published…or Not'. Jan is a wonderful interviewer, and I felt very relaxed and comfortable with her. The program will go to air in a couple of weeks.
While I was there, David Mc Lean interviewed Barry Jones about his new book, 'The Shock of Recognition', a compilation of great music and literature of the western world – or, as Barry called it a ‘love song.’ Every time I listen to Barry Jones I marvel not only at his erudition but his passion. To retain such a sense of wonder as you grow older is an enviable state of being.
Mercy Street was Book of the Month for Angus and Robertson and now for Readings bookstore. Needless to say, I'm very happy with this and the positive and thoughtful reviews the book has received so far.
I've spent a goodly number of happy summer days catching up on my reading: Salman Rushdie, Jhumpa Lahiri, Emily Bitto, Peter Weiringa, Peter Carey. And I still have the new Jonathon Franzen on my bedside table.
My garden is looking great, thanks to good neighbours. Recently. my niece gave me a tea-towel with this wonderful saying of Cicero. 'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.' That sums it up for me.
Since its release, I've received many wonderful responses from readers of Mercy Street, some of them through this web-site. It's a feeling like no other to know that the book is being read and your characters cared about, not only by friends and family, but readers from all over Australia. Books and stories connect us, the community of readers and writers.
Mercy Street Launch
Apparently my book, The Memory Tree, is in the National War Memorial in Canberra. For those who haven't read it, one of the major characters is a Vietnam veteran. Anyway, I feel honoured that it's there.
At 2.21 today I sent off my final proofread for ‘Mercy Street.’ It’s a bit like sending your baby off to school. Will the other kids like her? Will the teacher see how precious she is? Next time I see my book, it will be nestled between the beautifully designed covers. The rest is up to the readers.