Today was spent attending the Reading Matters; conference, and I'd quite forgotten how amazing it is. It's events like these that remind me how awesome it is to be working in the children's / young adults literature industry, and how awesome it is to live in Melbourne.
I also spent some of the evening attending the Artists Party at the Emerging Writers' Festival. Again - awesome to be living in Melbourne.
It's certainly these things that I'll be missing most when I move to Japan. However, I'm also feeling a healthy injection of inspiration to get myself in gear where it comes to my own creative work. Part of the reason I quit my last job was because it was such a drain on my creative energy, and I need to get back into the zone. The isolation of Japan will be good for this, and the experience of being in a new place will also be an impetus for creating new landscapes in my writing.
I'm also becoming ridiculously aware of my age, and seeing so many bright young things who are already past the "emerging" status of their art makes me feel, frankly, embarrassed that I haven't achieved enough with my life so far.
So, I promise myself this: I will use my time in Japan productively. If I can't find fulfilling work that will stimulate my career, then I will use my time to write all the stories, all the songs, and all the rhymes that are currently waiting to be committed to paper. I will return to Australia with a catalogue that is long through every passion ranging - of ballads, songs and snatches, and weepy lullabies.
My year in Japan will be the much-needed sabbatical that I've been promising myself for the last two years.