My friend and colleague Felicity Castagna contacted me a couple of weeks ago inviting me to the launch of her new Young Adult novel The Incredible Here and Now at Gleebooks. Sadly I had to send my apologies because I would still be in Adelaide teaching at the Life Writing Bootcamp at the SA Writers' Centre. Turns out I was back in time, and so this afternoon I headed in to see my gorgeous friend in her moment of triumph. I h ave been a fan of Felicity's ever since I read her first book, Small Indiscretions, which I reviewed in the Singapore Review of Books.
Felicity is something of a superwoman. As well as producing this beautifully written and startlingly original collection of short fiction set in Sydney's Western suburbs, she has also produced a beautful baby boy and been awarded her doctorate of creative arts. All, it seems, while barely breaking a sweat.
The new book has been published by the wonderfully innovative Giramondo Publishing, and publisher Professor Ivor Indyk (full disclosure - also my academic supervisor) was there offering a few wise words, followed by a fulsome launch speeech by YA author Irini Savvides.
|One of Felicity Castagna's images of Western Sydney|
Felicity read some short segments from the book, which were all briulliant, as well as showing some of her stark and occasionally meditative images of Western Sydney.
|Felicity Castagna launches her new book|
In the audience I spotted novelist Gail Jones and Michael Richardson, one of the editors of the soon-to-be-published collection of essays on trauma, Traumatic Effect.
Irini Savvides exposed the breadth of her reading by asking me if I was the person mentioned in American author Doreen Virtue's recent book on the Virgin Mary, Mary, Queen of Angels. I admitted that it was indeed me, and that the stories I told in its pages were all true. You really should check it out.
|Walter Mason has Felicity Castagna sign his copy of her new book|