We came, we saw, we talked, we drank and ate free food – as all good writers do.
Tonight was the Artists Party at the Emerging Writers’ Festival, and the day started with promise: you know, torrential downpours, freezing gushes of wind, car windows so foggy you can barely see out of them and then you yell at get angry at ghost cars behind you who DON’T PUT THEIR DAMN LIGHTS ON and you can’t see them and almost crash into them.
Yeah, the day was fun.
But the night was even better!
I prayed and prayed to the Rain Gods that it wouldn’t rain as a) I didn’t want to get my pretty dress or jacket wet and b) it’s about a ten minute walk from where I parked my car (god bless free car parking, thank you father!) and that’s a long time to walk in the rain.
(Well, it is for me. I hate the rain.)
Thankfully it didn’t rain and so off I went, carrying my huge heels in my hands and ducking into a door way on Little Lonsdale to take off my flats and shove them in my bang.
Tonight, let’s be honest, probably wasn’t the best time to be trialing out new heels.
They’re platforms with a huge heel and I felt very tall as I towered over people (this is huge for me as I’m usually quite short). Of course, I could barely walk (my single goal for this evening was not to stack it, and thankfully I didn’t!!) and about ten minutes in my feet ached, but hey! They’re very pretty and I love them. Oh, thus are the sacrifices a girl must make!
There was lots of fabulous people there, and I had lots of wonderful conversations.
I caught up with Paul Collins which is always a pleasure, Jeff Sparrow, Tully Hansen - who just won the Monash Prize hooray! – Andrew Finegan who is back from Japan hazzar!, met Melissa Keil - who is the first signed author at the Amerpsand Project- and together we gushed over the gorgeous Shirley Marr.
They’re just the people that I can recall now; the party was a haze of loud noises, bending in to hear people talk, celebrating words and writing, talking with lots and lots of people, cheering Lisa Dempster for such a fantastic period as director of EWF and nursing one glass of wine all night, as I drove.
And then there was Emily Maguire.
I’ve seen her talk heaps of times, read her work, followed what she’s been doing (so fully-fledged stalker here).
I saw her at Sydney Writers’ Festival and after conversing briefly on Twitter (she followed me! FOLLOWED ME!) and realising she was going to the Emerging Writers Festival, I started to get excited.
And then I saw her at the party tonight and knew that I’d regret it if I didn’t say anything.
So for most of the night, as I mingled and talked to people, I kept half an eye on where she was.
(Yes, arrest me for stalking, officer.)
Then as I was talking with some friends, I saw her duck out and my heart sank. I’d missed her!
But alas! I hadn’t! She was back in the foyer and I knew I had to make my move before she ducked out again.
So I excused myself, ran as fast as my heels would allow, and tried to come off as a normal person, rather than a crazed author stalker (I joked to someone earlier that I needed to learn to bottle my crazy!).
Emily was so humble and lovely and generous with her tim;, we, along with Anita Sethi, had a wonderfully long conversation.
I was a bit star-struck but Emily was just so lovely.
After talking to Emily, as I went back inside, we were being kicked out! Twas time to go!
A quick goodbye later and off I slunk into the night, taking my heels off less than a block up the road.
Bottom line: fantastic night.
See you at the Town Hall Conference tomorrow?