Best reads of the month, a deadline and a writers' course flurry, and the promise of great things to come.
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from Nadine

For Readers

I'm doing a little research this week. Research on three fairly distinct projects: a novel set during WWII Paris and Berlin; Australian History from 1945 to today; and mulit-layered, multi-audience picture books. So my reading list looks a little like a jumble sale, but I have found some absolute gems in the piles:

"All the Light We Cannot See" by Anthony Doerr is absolutely breathtaking. In every way. One page of an intimate image conveys every nuance of the big picture. Totally intimidating stuff for a writer!

"Vietnam - The Australian War" by Paul Ham and Peter Byrne makes sense of web-like complexity, weaving the personal with the political, Australian with global, absolutely seamlessly. And it's not dry or even a little bit boring! And here I was thinking it would be my "drag yourself through this one" book...

"A Child of Books" by Oliver Jeffers has just put him up there with Shaun Tan as one of my all-time favourite picture book Gods. Now I have to buy everything he has ever written. What a shame.

So, now it's your turn - are you a history buff with some great recommendations for my next big reads? Or are you a picture book kind of person with the kind of collection that you claim is for your children's reading pleasure? Or have you read any of these and want to share what you thought of them?

Either way, I'd love to hear from you!


For Writers

You may be wondering what has brought on this sudden flurry of writerly activity. Or perhaps you're thinking "well it's about time!"

I'm a deadlines kind of person. I write my essays under the pump in precisely timed available minutes. I did an entire re-write of my memoir in four days (minus time taken to feed the infant) to make the closing date for the competition that got it published. You don't survive an Olympic final without being a deadline kind of person, so I've found myself  a deadline. A big one.

I have a picture book whose time has come. The stars are aligning and this is His year. The feedback from the critical reader/editor was overwhelmingly in the "PITCH NOW" direction. The illustrator is being bombarded by our character in her brain. And I signed up for the Australian Writers' Centre "Build Your Author Platform" course at the beginning of last year and my time to access the materials is running out!... Oh and did I mention I'm, going back to full time work in exactly 12 days?

What greater motivation could I possibly need to set it all up NOW! And if that wasn't motivating enough, the course is completely fantabulous. I've been a long-time fan of Allison Tait, following her blog from the time she was writing Life in a Pink Fibro. This course has made an overwhelming task seem do-able, and it's been so reaffirming for someone who continually doubts her authorly credentials, that this is and always will be a big part of who I am and that alone makes it worth sharing.

So, here we go...

Coming up...

Great books and online resources about child development, the power of writing the self, collaboration and more collaboration, and maybe a sneak peek into the world of an over-organiser.
Copyright © 2017 Nadine Neumann, All rights reserved.

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Nadine Neumann · PO Box 202 · Morpeth, Nsw 2321 · Australia

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