Paying attention: the writer’s superpower

I began to wonder why the verb that goes with ‘attention’ is ‘to pay’. Is it a debt? A duty? A tax? An outlay of energy? Work seems to be involved in the phrase, or perhaps sacrifice. And what do we get back, if we pay it?

Helen Garner

Helen Garner’s reflections on her writing life – featured in this year’s Melbourne Writers Festival – were as welcome as could be to this HG-starved aspiring author. Immersing myself in the writing life of other writers feels like relaxing back into a warm bath. These are my people.

Helen Garner - one of Australia's leading writers - in a Melbourne Writers Festival publicity shot
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The Weekend by Charlotte Wood

The first DIY Woman book review – I hope it will open up a discussion about books that helps create a connection for those who love to read.

I’ve wanted to read The WeekendCharlotte Wood‘s latest book – ever since I heard about it on Radio National’s The Bookshelf. Its basic premise – the 30-year friendship of four women, a weekend away after the death of one of them – was one that appealed to me.

Book cover of The Weekend by Charlotte Wood including the silhouette of a dog
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DIY Woman’s guide to getting published

There has to be an alternative to doing time on the slush pile on the rocky road to becoming a published author.

Slush pile of manuscripts | more on www.diywoman.netSlush pile of manuscripts | more on www.diywoman.net

I’ve already likened my passion for writing to the urge to reproduce. I could say  the same of my relentless pursuit of a publishing deal. I am guilty of every crime in the self-promotion book. Schmoozing. Pitching at a minute’s notice. Imposing on the goodwill of strangers. It’s a litany of misdemeanours.

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