If there’s one thing I’ve learned as an author – and let’s face it, this might be the only thing I’ve learned – it’s the ‘never dead’ principle. A manuscript, a short story, a book that for all intents and purposes appears to have been pine-boxed can rise up out of the ground and zombie along into new momentum.
I’ve experienced this with pretty much all my work, most notably my second published book, Most Valuable Potential (I won’t go into the gory details – suffice to say I believed it deader than a canary in a toxic mine the day it was shortlisted for the Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards). And just this week, Kindling joined the resuscitated ranks of its predecessors.
What gave it the kiss of life? Nothing so dramatic as a major award shortlisting; just a very kind, very affecting, very passionate review from someone who read Kindling for the first time, eighteen months after its joyous birth and twelve months after its doleful passing. It demonstrated to me once again that work out in the world makes its own way, in it’s own time. It assured me there is an immortality to words an author commits to the page; an unceasing story pulse that may vary between frenetic and faint, but ultimately won’t ever fail.
It was a timely reminder of the ‘never dead’ principle.