The Divided Heart – Motherhood and Creativity


It’s summer 2010 and I’m sitting on my bed trying to read a book, it’s the first book I have attempted to read since having my baby. The book is The Divided Heart by Rachel Power, recommended to me by an old work mate from Melbourne. I read interviews from women whose work is familiar to me, less familiar and unknown. I read how women with more than one child balance their creative lives and parenting. I think how the hell do people have more than one? Am I ever going to do life things again?

A week prior to this I had been in hospital – where we had to stay for much longer than most due to many, many complications – and I recall a midwife asking me “So, what kind of artist are you?” It was one of the first times someone had addressed me and not my body parts. I remember out of the blur I focused on her expectant face.. I literally had no idea what she had just said, I had no idea what artist meant. “Artist? What?” And she said “Your notes say that you’re an artist. What kind of art do you make?”
I think I just shrugged and went back to sobbing.

That moment always sticks out to me. Artist had been a definitive part of my identity for as long as I could remember and I had had this experience which pretty much stripped me bare. I am forever thankful for my old work mate reaching out to me, her child a little older than a baby by then and she would have known or at least had an inkling, of where I was at. She gave me something that I would continue to go back to on this journey, it’s a bit like a reference guide. But you know, people’s stories and experience rather than statistics..

So, it is now 2015 and Rachel Power has rereleased this book with new interviews, including one with yours truly. I feel so incredibly lucky, I am so incredibly lucky, to be part of this.

Next week the book will be launched at Readings in Carlton, Melbourne by Clare Bowditch. Details of the event are here: linky

Rachel Power will also be appearing at a number of literary events which you can read about over at her blog The Rachel Papers.
I will be at the Williamstown Literary Festival with Rachel Power, Sally Rippin and Lisa Gorton in June, details here: WILLY LIT FEST

And the last handy link I will leave you with – you can buy a copy of the book here. Even if you have read it, maybe there is someone you could purchase it for, like my old workmate did all those years ago!


Road trip adventure!


I love to explore. This weekend had both the Newstead short story and Clunes book fair on so we made our way to those parts. In-between book buying, reading, listening to stories and eating cake with friends we went driving and walking and photo taking. The weather was spectacular, the autumn sun was very generous. Kidlet and I did drawing in my new sketch book ( Which I will post later ) – she drew a naughty woman who cut the hill in half and had a fanny on her head.

^ babe ^




We decided to stay the night in a motel, all sleeping in the same room. We haven’t done that in long time so it was really fun. It also meant we could go to the fire stories and stay for the whole event. I didn’t know how long we would last, but we managed to stay AND I managed to toast some marshmallows for us to enjoy.



The stories and music were great, kidlet danced and danced. I especially enjoyed the reading by Kirsten Krauth and Joe Dolce’s music and stories.



^ Photos by Gene! ^

The next morning we were greeted by a cup of tea in the warm sun, bird prints all over our car and chats with Lin while the horse next door trotted proudly about. We didn’t stick around, opting to take back roads from Newstead through Moolort to Clunes, so I could take some pictures.




^ Kidlet took this! ^

We came across and old bridge and pulled over so I could take some snaps. I took the wrong lens but found it to be so beautiful I had to get the other two to join me.


This is the McLennan Bridge – you can read about it here.






It is so beautiful.

Eventually we made to to Clunes and ate bagels in the sun. It was quite busy by the time we had arrived. I’ve never seen Clunes like that! We looked at some books and popped into see a few things. We got to see Tai Snaith and Nicholas Jones in action. Which was pretty special as I was just reading Tai’s latest book to kidlet just recently.


After that we though that maybe we should go home as we were running out of steam.
How awesome is Victoria!