Anyone paying the slightest bit of attention will realise I've streamlined the title of my project. I'd wanted a descriptive title, but what I'd initially settled on was nothing short of clunky. Besides I couldn't say it without a stutter which was a sterling indication it needed to be changed.
As I write, we are just under 24 days to launch and excitement is building. I don't even have time to even acknowledge feelings of being slightly overwhelmed. I'm so grateful that the more I talk to people about the project, the wider the circle of support and encouragement grows which helps build confidence that this is going to be truly worthwhile. And on a personal level, I am enthused to have embarked on a massive learning curve (largely regarding podcasting but also in terms of being comfortable reaching out to others to participate and/or support which is right outside my comfort zone). I have such a terrific line up of people to talk to throughout the year, and I'm looking for more, so please feel free to share information about the project. The more the merrier.
I had a most convivial and relaxed Zoom chat with the delicious Margo Tantau of Windowsill Chats/Tantau Studio (that's a link, fyi) a couple of weeks ago. She is a wonderful champion of all creatives, whilst being a maker and entrepreneur herself, so connecting with her at this time was great for me. I don't really remember much about what I said, and I hope it's usable because a podcast episode of our chat will be released any day now. I must say, Margo's podcast "Windowsill Chats" really is a must listen for creatives of any discipline: for motivation as well as practical advice and information about all aspects of the creative process AND business tips whilst also delving into the nitty gritty of artists' lives and backstories. She also generously gives us the benefit of her own lived experience as she chats to her guests, so if you feel like "sitting with friends" for an hour and listening to them yarn while you go about your day, this is a podcast for you. You can find it on Apple podcasts, Spotify or anywhere you get your podcasts.
If you read the last blog post you'll know I'd applied for a grant to subsidise Where Art & Grief Meet but my application was unsuccessful. It was an huge shot in the dark to even apply but I must say that going through the application process was ENORMOUSLY HELPFUL in nutting out my aims and objectives at a very granular level: an essential undertaking, really, if you're serious about what you're doing. So although it was disappointing news in some ways, it was definitely time and energy well exerted AND it meant that when I knew one way or another about the funding, all that needed doing was adjusting deliverables and opening other lines of potential funding in order to ensure I could continue the work.
That said, I have opened a Patreon so anyone wanting to sponsor this one year project is invited to sign on and support the work as well as receive tokens of appreciation as we go along.
If that wasn't enough I've also inexplicably decided that THIS is the moment for me to bring to life a picture book idea that's been kicking around in my head since BabyNyx, our second pup came into our lives. It is inspired by Pluto, my doggo number 1 and came about because of something I find myself repeatedly saying to him as he negotiates life with a little sister (who's now bigger than him) and the very deepest desire he has to be top dog. Watch this space and my IG feed for updates on my progress.
Winter has definitely set in here in Melbourne. Along with bitter winds, we finally have some welcome rain which is turning the grass green and encouraging our citrus trees to flourish. It's a lovely time, perfect for being creative and moving everything forward. So in the words of someone who said it before me, ONWARD!