Jay Anderson: a chance to reinvigorate my writing practice.
Jay was staying at KSP as an Upcoming Writer-in-Residence in 2021.
On a Monday afternoon after a long day of work, bags packed, containers of curry and pasta stacked in a cooler bag, I made my way to the Katharine Susannah Prichard Writer’s Centre. The last few weeks had felt long too, as I prepared to take some time off work to focus on my writing. But now that I was here, it seemed like I had blinked passed them as my mind attempted to grasp memories of days passed made of smoke in air. It occurred to me as my car edged its way around the gravel road crowded with bushes and trees that led to my secluded cabin in the hills, that I had done very little writing in that year. A year that was so long and so slow and so short and so fast. Like the dying embers of jarrah burned in woodstoves you can smell and taste across the suburbs in winter. So what I gained from two weeks at KSP was invaluable. The cold clambered outside my cabin in the dark but inside I was quiet warmth by lamplight and reading and writing with the space, time and energy that I had not had for months and months. I was too many cups of tea, drops spilling onto dog-marked pages of books or between laptop keys. I was so many late nights, words spilling from my mind like the pounding winter rain. I was butter and honey toast mornings, trying to make sense of the storms of nights before. I was writing again, and it was liberating. During my time at KSP I made stories of the notes I had written on my phone from thoughts that had come and gone more than a year ago, I edited work that had been waiting for a deft hand for months, and I started to plan for new and exciting projects. I took steps in my writing practice, and steps towards my future endeavours as a writer. My stay at KSP was absolutely wonderful. Because the KSP staff are so generous, because the cabins are darling, because there is a community of writers there to be a part of. But above all else it offered a reprieve in a difficult year, and it gave me a chance to reinvigorate my writing practice.
~ Jay Anderson 2021