Creative Time Residential Fellowship Adventures! Part 1 by Deb Fitzpatrick
My time in Canberra was absolutely perfect. Before I arrived, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel on my own all day every day, but in truth I lapped it up. In the mornings I wrote in the studio (which was perfect), and if I couldn’t write I went down to the local café with paper a pen and wrote there with a coffee to help kick-start things. At the beginning of my residency I had a loose idea of my novel's key characters and story. In the precious seven days of my corona-interrupted residency, I was able to flesh out those characters’ voices, as well as those of more peripheral characters; firm up a working structure for the novel; and write about 5000 words. I’m absolutely delighted with that progress and look forward to resuming my residency as soon as the world gets back to normal!
When I wasn’t writing, I did a heap of reading, focusing mainly on Australian fiction. I also took long walks around Mt Ainslie and Lake Burley Griffin, and visited the National Gallery of Australia and the Australian War Memorial. I was also looked after incredibly well by Virginia, who took me to the Arboretum, which I loved, and on drives around the city showing me all sorts of points of interest, such as the National Library of Australia, the embassy district, and the many beautiful artworks located around the city. She was exceptionally kind and thoughtful and I’m really grateful to her for looking after me.
While my residency was cut short, not a moment was wasted nor taken for granted. I can’t wait to pick it up again once things have settled down and life can resume some sort of normality.