Today I’d like to welcome a brand new Australian voice and novelist Georgia Madden to The Never Ending Bookshelf as she shares a bit about her books, bookshelves, and writing with us all.
Georgia Madden is a first-time author, journalist and frazzled mum-of-two. She is an interiors journalist and a frequent contributor to home and lifestyle magazines in Australia and the UK. She lives in Sydney.
Her début novel Confessions Of A Once Fashionable Mum was released on April 22nd this year and is available from all good bookshops. Click here to read my review of Confessions of A Once Fashionable Mum.
It would also make a great Mothers Day present if you haven’t got mum anything yet 🙂
What are you currently reading?
Emily Bitto’s The Strays. The story is really resonating with me; like the main character, I was also brought up in a fairly straightlaced household, and when I was ten or eleven became good friends with the daughter of artists living up the road. They were complete bohemians and made me question everything I’d accepted as a given.
What’s the last book you bought?
Do you prefer to read books in print or electronically?
Print, all the way. I’ve read a few books on my iPad, but find it quite a different experience. I tend not to lose myself in the story in the same way I do with a paperback; I’m always very aware of the device in my hands. Now, I guess that’s showing my age!
If I was to walk into your house right now, what would your bookshelves look like? Do you have an organisation system (genre, colour, author…) or are you just happy to go with the flow?
I’ve written several features for House & Garden magazine over the years on how to organise and decorate with books, but seem to be incapable of taking my own advice. Step inside my place and you’ll find books everywhere; towering on bedside tables, piled on the floor, stacked against the bathroom cabinet. A couple of times a year, when they threaten to take over completely, I’ll do a bit of a purge and share them out with friends and family. Until then, I like to keep them close.
How often do you read?
More often than I probably should. Housework, cooking and the like certainly take a backseat to a story.
Describe what you would expect to find in your dream book?
Honesty, humour, interesting, well-drawn characters, and a twist or a message that I didn’t see coming, but which makes absolute sense.
How do you choose what to read next?
I’m not keen on heavy, serious book reviews – I far prefer to ask people what they’re enjoying, scour Goodreads and check in with my favourite book blogs (of which The Never Ending Bookshelf is top of the list, of course!)
I also spend a lot of time perusing the shelves of our wonderful local bookshop (St Ives Book Review), and pop into the library as often as I can.
So you’ve started a book and discover it’s not for you. Are you more likely to discard it or finish it?
Discard it. Life is too short for bad books when there are so many good ones out there.
If you could read any book again, for the first time, what book would you choose?
I had to really think about this one. It would probably be We Need To Talk About Kevin. Such a brilliant read, with an ending that I absolutely did not see coming (was I the only one?)
What is about books that appeals to you so much? What is your favourite part about reading?
I love diving into someone else’s world and someone else’s mind. It really is a gift. There have been several times in my reading life where I’ve wanted to hug the author and thank them for having the courage to sit down and write.
Was there any particular book that inspired you to start writing?
I do remember being pretty taken with The Magic Faraway Tree. Enid Blyton created a whole world above the clouds, and as a child that seemed like an incredibly powerful thing to do. My seven year old is currently obsessed with her books, and it amazes me that in this era of computers and iPads they still hold that kind of power.
Do you have any advice to other writers out there?
I’ve only just begun my journey as an author, so I’m not sure that I’m qualified enough to offer advice. But one important lesson I have learned is not to be too critical of yourself or you’ll never get past the first page. Write fast and have fun; the time for close questioning comes later. Your first draft is unlikely to look anything like your final one.
And lastly, what are you currently working on?
I’m busy tinkering away on the next instalment of Confessions, set five years down the track when Ally’s daughter Coco starts school and she’s thrust into the world of the playground mum.
Confessions of a Once Fashionable Mum is available at Booktopia and wherever good books are sold.