Twelve months might seem like a long break, I suppose. It's been a big year.
Relocated to Canberra, started working for the public service and stopped trying to do the PhD. Bliss. Not being a postgraduate student is about the best feeling ever. In fact, I recommend everyone start a PhD and then drops out of it, on the same principle that you should hit yourself on the head repeatedly with a rock, because it feels so good when you stop. I don't know how long the feelings of relief, lightness and joy will last, but basically it's been like a year of honeymoon.
And being a public servant is surprisingly satisfactory, despite the fact that many of my colleagues do, in fact, wear grey suits. Not all of them though.
And last night I managed to attend the Prime Minister's Literary Awards. The Prime Minister was there, although for considerably less time than any of the other attendees. None of the rest of us had to rush off to continue running the country. There was some elevated company, including the Minister for the Arts (not dancing), Tom Kenneally, Rhys Muldoon (from Playschool!!!!) and diverse booksellers, publishers and delightful people who administer the Public Lending Rights. Bless them. They are clearly good hearted and generous souls, and not only with sharing of government money.
If I had been tempted to get above myself by swanning around Parliament House eating prawns and sipping bubbling wine I was positively deflated by having to wait half an hour for a bus to get home afterwards. Canberra public transport is more of an aspiration than a practice.
It was odd being at a book event with so few Brisbane literary celebs. In fact, I don't believe it's constiutional to hold such a thing without any ex-students from QUT creative writing attending, so it was lucky I was there. Phew.
Oh, and my column got cancelled last week, so I have plenty of time to blog. Lucky me.