Monday, February 24, 2014

Notes from the South, Part 1....

So I have moved cities and life has changed comprehensively. So far I am still in the 'this is surreal' phase. Or 'weird'. I am cheating using words like these and not giving you a wider description of how it feels and what it means. The brain is still whirring and clicking and cogitating. I am still in the midst of conclusifying. It is mind bendery.

But I intend to talk about it. Again it is a little like having children or having a first book published. As much as you ask questions about it beforehand and think you have it sussed about what the change will mean in your life, what the reality of it all is, you cannot really know until you are immersed in it. And even then it takes a while to settle into all the ramifications. And I think this whole ramification thing might have a very long tail.

It is novel to be in an environment where there is no expectation of you other than that you will write, and perhaps sometimes talk books with other folk, and you will be paid to do so. And the money is not rewarding the end product, (which is how a writer's financial life is usually arranged and strangely after bleeding yourself onto the page the recompense still most often seems tied to things other than your personal effort), but rather the act of just writing itself. I think, perhaps, this is a big part of the adjustment I am experiencing. I am, for the next six months, actually employed to do one of the jobs I love best. It is a novel kind of freedom.  I'll let you know how it goes

I cannot thank the University of Otago's College of Education enough for the existence of this brilliant opportunity, or the fact that they gave it to me. Or how wonderful their welcome has been. Enormous thanks too to Creative New Zealand for co-funding this amazing initiative. And to my family who said 'go' and who understand what this means to me. Man, I love you guys so much!  How lucky am I????

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