Perth Poetry Club Performance at The Moon, Northbridge, Perth. Twenty minute feature act slot, so had time to cover a range of topics from technology modernisation to the Margaret Thatcher days of mining strikes. Such a cool poetry institution in Western Australia with an engaging crowd who were certainly up for some audience participation.
Such a privilege to be invited to provide two poems to accompany artworks being auctioned for charity. Heartlines for Lifeline host an annual silent art auction. The two poems were kept in sealed envelope for the winning bidders. All proceeds went to Lifeline, a national charity providing all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services.
So relaxing hanging out at The Temple of Words this week at Bookoccino, a book haven owned by Raymond Bonner, a Pulitzer Prize winnign former foreign correspondent and author, and dedicated bibliophile Sally Tabner. Fab crowd reading poetry, meditating, and drinking good ginger tea - Fuel for the soul indeed.
I chose a couple of readings on bullying and domestic violence, taken from Graffiti Lane, my Poetry Collection. This one is called Eggshells.
The official launch of Graffiti Lane was held in Perth, with friends, family, and many from Perth's writing community attending. The venue was the eclectic and hip Wolf Lane, with walls painted with storybook murals and the laneway spray-painted with street art.
Inside the venue, a new form of graffiti took to the mic. I was totally stoked to be joined by publisher - Karen Mc Dermott, HarperCollins author - Tess Woods, and performance poet - Scott-Patrick Mitchell giving amazing speeches and performances.
Thank you to everyone who attended on a rainy Tuesday night to enjoy the bubbles, canapes, donuts, and to make the event a success.
There is no better way to spend a Sunday morning than relaxing at the wonderfully eclectic Just Add Passion Emporium in Stoneville in the heart of Perth's hills. Owner Michelle Greening invited me along for an intimate setting with poetry readings from Graffiti Lane, book sales, and signings, with a glass of bubbly and nibbles to add to the ambiance. The morning rolled with an incredibly deep discussion with the group who attended, delving into life's complexities. Poetry has away of making people relax and open up the soul to bare. This event was no exception and I thank everyone who attended for the candid chat on so many important current issues. Just Add Passion also stocked up on signed copies of my book - it doesn't get much better than that!
Launching Graffiti Lane around the country has been incredible. The Melbourne event was the first cab off the rank with a Literary Evening spent with on stage with two other authors, talking about resilience and the power it can have on shaping your life. Hosted by journalist Susan Wakefield, I had the privilege of speaking at the Library at the Dock with Danielle Aitken and Michelle Weitering. Each of us shared stories of resilience and overcoming obstacles. My own journey from being bullied in high school to where I am today is shared through elements of the poetry in Graffiti Lane, while Michelle has written her family memoir relating to her son Jesse's struggle with anxiety after being relentlessly bullied at school. Danielle Aitken talked about the somewhat taboo topic of IVF treatment that has been unsuccessful. Publisher Karen Mc Dermott flew in from WA to speak at the event and was joined in the audience by international rights agent, Natasha Solomun from The Rights Hive. Local press picked up on the event.
Whirlwind weekend at Perth Festival attending Fremantle Press Business of Being a Writer and Pitch breakfast sessions, plus a wonderful meeting with my agent, Clive Newman and the beautiful energetic Natasha Solomun from International Rights Agency, The Rights Hive. Great to network with so many publishing professionals as part of the emerging writers First Edition Fellowship awarded by KSP Writers’ Centre and still managed to squeeze in a lovely relaxing lunch on a beanbag with my poetry editor, Teena Raffa-Mulligan. Learned so much talking to Fremantle Press authors like Jon Doust (highlight of the day was hearing about his boarding school bullying stories first hand), James Foley, Amanda Curtin, Norman Jorgensen, Anne-Louise Willoughby and Holden Sheppard.
Thrilled to have a flash fiction piece shortlisted by Lapidus International, a not-for profit organisation. Lapidus use words and expressive arts to promote well-being and good mental health. The piece about kindness will be published in an e-book later this year with eight other authors. Writing with a cause #fuelforthesoul.
After a particularly crazy day at work, interacting with amazing colleague's in Japan, it dawned on me to mellow out with a short Japanese Haiku poem.
By Kelly Van Nelson
Peeking above ground,
yellow head catching first light.
Blowing loud trumpet.
A new tune singing brightly,
Like every writer, I like to squeeze a good book into every spare minute. I devour many, but the ones that tend to stick in my mind the most are where a strong message shines through. I love books that challenge the mind, question morals, and turn the status quo on its head. Here are my favourite recent reads.
2017 Pick of the Bunch
Just in case you missed it…