Ask me anything
Politics, international relations, writing, law, music, fatherhood, catblogging & whimsical nonsense, served with no ice, in the tiny hamlet of Bell on the banks of Merri Creek, Victoria, Australia
I’m at the Sydney Writer’s Festival this week, and I’m so excited to see the British poet Kate Tempest read this afternoon. Here is her powerful performance of her piece, ‘Icarus’. And here is some beautiful advice she has for young poets, playwrights and performers:
"Finish things. That’s how you develop your voice. Whether it’s a poem or a short film or a painting or a piece of theatre, whatever it is, finish it. Let it go and move onto the next thing. Lots of the stuff I’ve done I think is really, really shit but it’s fine because it’s finished. You’ve got to try to be a better artist today than you were yesterday. And if you never finish anything that’s hard because you’re always trying to be the best artist that’s ever been."
"Margaux [Williamson] is much messier and freer; she’s a painter. I think you can be more precise with language than you can with paint and you can go back to an earlier draft, whereas with painting if you make a line you can’t just go back to an earlier draft: you have to deal with the mess you’ve made. We’ve had this conversation a lot. Margaux thinks the writer becomes neurotic because you can go backwards, and because you can go backwards in your art you can go backwards in your life. With my other books I sort of feel that they’re clean and good and so on, and after I published them the response didn’t make me feel any less clean or good; this book is so dirty. The response to it, and allowing myself to do all these interviews or whatever; everything’s become messy and dirty in my life and in my sense of myself. The book’s effect on my life has been kind of radical in a way that feels counter to my nature and everything."