TW: This episode contains discussion of the experience of living with an eating disorder, and also discussion of the Black Saturday bushfires.
Confidence. How do you foster it? Kate went to see Madeline Dore interview with Zoe Foster Blake at the Melbourne Writers Festival and they chat about why this was a lightbulb moment in terms of working out what confidence looks like on the stage. (Kate’s also a massive fan of Madeline’s newsletter out of Extraordinary Routines) Katherine poses an excellent exercise for building confidence and Kate proposes a ‘confidence spray’.
Then Kate speaks with writer Alice Bishop.
Alice grew up in Christmas Hills and now lives in Thornbury, Victoria. Her first collection of short fiction is A Constant Hum, published in 2019. The beginnings of A Constant Hum have been commended in the 2015 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript and then longlisted in both the inaugural Richell Prize and the 2017 Kill Your Darlings Unpublished Manuscript Award. Alice’s work has also appeared in Meanjin, Southerly, Australian Book Review, Griffith REVIEW, Overland, The Suburban Review, Visible Ink, Seizure, Voiceworks, and the human rights publication Right Now.
They talk (and cry at one point) about:
- how Alice’s high school English teacher inspired her writing (shout out to Glen Pearsall)
- being published for the first time in the fabulous Voiceworks
- ‘the space to read and write’ Alice found in returning to study creative writing at Melbourne Uni
- the Black Saturday bushfires, their aftermath and writing A Constant Hum
- Josephine Rowe and Tony Birch as mentors
- the beauty of a great editor and how A Constant Hum came to be structured
- submitting to unpublished manuscript awards including the Unpublished Manuscript Award for a Victorian Writer, Penguin Manuscript Prize, The Richell Prize and the KYD Unpublished Manuscript Award
- Alice’s essay Coppering and her approach to writing creative non-fiction, she mentions Tony Birch’s essay Two Fires and Fiona Wright’s Small Acts of Disappearance
- Having a Wheeler Centre Hot Desk Fellowship (like other guests Jamie Marina Lau, Khalid Warsame & Rajith Savanadasa)
- Dealing with rejection
- The wonderful writing community in Melbourne, particularly small journals such as The Suburban Review
- Being a guest of the Northern Territory Writers Festival
Alice recommends Josephine Rowe’s East of Here, Close to Water as her fave debut novel.
Reach out to Lifeline on 13 11 14 if anything in this episode impacts you.