When you can’t beat ’em…

It’s been a month since I last wrote a blog and I blame it all on Punch and Judy.

Since my last post, written while we were in Mudgee, I’ve been thinking constantly about books and writing. I’ve toured Tasmania, speaking at an AATE/ALEA Conference in Devonport and talking to thousands of kids from Penguin to Hobart. I’ve been to the Hunter Valley and talked books and babies with the lovely Alyssa Brugman. I’ve written grant applications, scraps of short fiction, worked on my new novel and generally got on with the business of being a writer. I’ve visited schools and libraries in NSW, and travelled from Newcastle to Port Macquarie to the Byron hinterland. This week, I’ve dined with fabulous teacher librarians on the Gold Coast and worked with students at Aquinas College. I’ve also read dozens of great novels. But every time I’ve sat down to write a blog post about any of the above and books and writing, which is what Magic Casements has always meant to be about, I’ve been distracted by Mr Punch.

The conflict of interest between writing about books or writing about Mr Punch has grown so intense that I’ve decided to start a new blog dedicated exclusively to Life with Punch. It might be a bad idea. Writing two blogs might mean less writing and less blogging gets done. But perhaps it will mean more of everything. Sometimes, when I’m working on a novel and find myself getting stuck, I start writing a completely different novel altogether. For some reason it seems to unlock the creative process.

I wrote my novels ‘Vulture’s Gate’ and ‘India Dark’ across the same time period, working intensely on one and then the other and each seemed to make the other more do-able. So hopefully keeping two blogs will work the same way. I’m going to try and keep Mr Punch’s long nose out of Magic Casements so if you want to find out what he’s been up to, and about our lives in the ‘Gas Bottle Republic’ as the Professor calls the world of caravanning, then you can follow my new blog, ‘Life with Punch‘. Stick around on Magic Casements for updates on all things bookish and how to write in the face of intense competition from puppets. When you can’t beat ’em – give ’em their own blog.

Kirsty is an Australian author of books for children and young adults.

“Books are windows into other ways of being.”

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