From Emerging to Established Author!

  

For over two decades I’ve been an emerging writer. Once you tip the scales and have several books, ie poetry (2) and novels (2) you’re an established author (it seems). I’ve recently applied for a residency in this category and now realise I have competition with the very best. It’s quite daunting when you think about your peers in your own state, those who have high profiles, get invited to writers’ festivals, attend public and community talks, etc. Suddenly you find yourself in a different category and wonder does this bring kudos?

MAYBE? I have noticed of late, that I am now being invited to submit my poetry to Australian online & print poetry journals. Sure, my publisher Adelaide Books in New York (I’m a listed writer) invites us all to submit to their Anthology Award every year. There are short stories, poetry and essays, all neatly packaged in a bound book for each genre. I haven’t been a winner, but I feel assured each time that my work is being supported and my prose poetry gets published. I’m now in their 2019 & 2020 Adelaide Poetry Anthology.

While I have moved over to fiction, my poetry has really taken a back seat. I do, however, write prose poetry from time to time, and I find that it’s fun posting to my Instagram @evangelynewriter with graphics to match. Getting back to the subject, twice now and probably it’s a “mutual friendly society” but I have been initially invited to Phillip Hall’s poetry journal “Burrow” – the first poem in the September 2020 issue and more recently another poem forthcoming in September, 2021. The latest invitation is from one of the Editors of a forthcoming publication – the Australian Poetry Journal, APJ 11.1. Fingers crossed, and a giant blog post to follow, if successful!

I thought I had left poetry behind, to move forward and fully concentrate on novels, but the old genre keeps pulling me back with plenty of surprises. I am also soon to write a poetry review for Miriam Wei Wei Lo on her 2nd Edition of Against Certain Capture. I used to write poetry reviews for Plumwood Mountain eco-journal which suddenly stopped. (I don’t think they liked me steering away from the ecological side and not all collections supplied had that theme). Still, I may have luck getting Miriam’s review published in the Rochford Street Journal.

I can hear my dad with his old fatherly saying, “Wonders never cease.”

2nd Writing Retreat @ KSP

RetreatWalk

One of the things that I like to do while in rereat is to discover the terrain around the place that I’m staying in. I’m spending another week at the KSP Greenmount and, of course, you can’t write 24/7. There is a need to get out into the landscape, stretch that curved-writing spine and exercise. For the last two days, I chose to walk in the John Forest National Park. It’s quite an extensive area, although a little hilly for my taste. Closer to the Ranger’s House, café and store is a smaller and more level paved-walk. As you can see from the photos, it is a pleasant meander around a lake cum water feature with ducks, bridges across to the other side and wooden resting huts. Or perhaps they are picnic huts for weekenders? An added feature, I’m sure are here for the tourists, are the kangaroos. One day, I counted twenty, all hanging out at the local store. It appeared that they were waiting to be fed. Not much grass around this picnic area.

RetreatWalk1

The John Forest National Park is also historical. There are plates showing the early pioneers, especially Lord Forest and Lady Forest. A nice surprise was to read one about Katharine Susannah Pritchard who is quite revered in this area. It doesn’t matter who you talk to, and I also visited a friend up here for coffee, most locals know about the Katharine Susannah Pritchard Writers Centre and the lady herself. It’s good to see that some history is preserved, especially here where I am. Her original writing cabin is next to my cabin. Back to the manuscript!

Review of Lost Memory of Skin by Russell Banks

Lost Memory of SkinLost Memory of Skin by Russell Banks
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Russell Banks is one of my favourite authors. Since reading his novel “The Sweet Hereafter” I have searched for more of his books. [The Sweet Hereafter was an excellent 1997 film by Atom Egoyan]. I also have “Cloudsplitter” waiting on my bookshelves. I’m now up to Page 140 in “The Lost Memory of Skin” and liking the novel so far. How does he do it, he mixes tenses seamlessly?
Now finished, it was a great read with so many twists and turns and definitely not predictable. I sympathized with the character Kid (main protagonist). Banks highlights how some people are victimized not through any fault of their own, but through a serious of life’s circumstances. The Kid, although an adult, is a convicted paedophile, wears an ankle bracelet which has to stay on for 10 years. However, you begin to realize that he is not really a criminal, that he’s been convicted through being young, uneducated both morally and socially. He is also a little naive and I liked him. I also understood the parallels with Banks’ other character the Professor. It makes you wonder about people in life, just who is the baddie?
I’ve now moved on to Cloudsplitter.
Helen

View all my reviews