I've just returned from a weekend in Adelaide, which included some time at the Adelaide Writers' Week. I was pleasantly surprised by how accessible the writers' festival is, with venues all very close to one another and most events free. The atmosphere there was great, with most Writers' Week sessions held on outdoor stages, amongst the trees in a park. It's a beautiful setting, and as at so many of the writers' events I'm lucky to attend, I couldn't help but get a bit swept up by the enormous hopefulness of it all. Writers' events exist as a celebration of individual writers' work, and as an important catalyst for discussion, but also as an affirmation for the rest of us: It's possible. Keep going. You'll get there: you are becoming.
Writers' events are a promise to the parts of us that, at times, doubt that we can actually do what it is that we do. In his session on Sunday, Robert Adamson said something that stuck for me: "Every time I finish a poem I think it's a miracle. Will I ever write another one?" I feel so comforted that Robert Adamson still feels this way after he's proven again and again that he can do it, and so wonderfully. He doubts himself just like we all do. He also accepts that he's never arrived at where he's headed - he's becoming, too. In celebration of this notion of 'becoming', each Monday throughout March we'll be hearing from writers on the theme, "Making It Into a Book". From a website yearbook to an erotic memoir, we look forward to sharing stories of what's involved in turning a project or experience into a book. And if you feel like you'd like to turn something into a book of your own, we'd love you to come and join us at You Are Here festival for 'DIY in a Day'. For this event, we're teaming up with our friends at rip publishing. The 'DIY in a Day' event will be held at the Publishing Fair at Gorman House on 23rd March, and we're taking submissions on the theme of "Where Are You?" to create a chapbook. More details on this event will appear on the blog soon. Also on this idea of 'becoming', we're thrilled to be unveiling the brand, spankin' new Writers Bloc site this week! We're very proud of it, and can't wait to hear what you think. Get amongst it this month. Dirty your hands in the craft, try and sometimes fail in your experiments, and accept that all creative work is a process of becoming - essentially, that's a hopeful thing. SvZ