from our correspondent in the South – missives from Melbourne #2 Jennifer Vuletic on writing

….a melancholy mood in the latter part of the day. It was a cold morning – bright, but not encouraging me to spring from my bed. And besides, I was luxuriating in the freedom stretching before me, after a long, intense, physically and spiritually demanding day at work. In gaol. Fending off attacks, orchestrating violence, bribing authority figures… you know how it is. I was looking forward to a day of leisurely and yet industrious autonomy. To read (Jill Soloway, but more of them later)… to partake in an online Pilates class (de rigeur in these days of closed gyms – a brief visit in the window of non-lockdown was like attending a crime scene, so much hazard tape wound around forbidden areas and fitness objects)… to stroll to a local coffee haunt (for takeaway, natch)… to drink it on a favourite log near an expanse of green (and thwarted because the area, like so many, was “temporarily closed”, COVID style)…to record some children’s books for the Debney Meadows Story Time group (the kids in the “infamous” police-guarded-lockdown, no longer able to have stories read to them in person by visiting narrators, so one of my glorious big-hearted work colleagues dreamt up the Vimeo alternative).

I did all of these. But…all with slightly leaden metaphorical feet. Not sure what it is – the continually high numbers and the threat of more stringent restrictions. Don’t misunderstand – I will do whatever it takes in compliance with regulations and measures taken to do battle with COVID19. I am enormously impressed with our state leader’s grace, patience and daily deliverance of horrifying statistics in a calm and continually ameliorative manner. He never succumbs to petty politicking or responding in kind to snarly jibes. It’s just … the ominous nature of this COVID cloud. Its in-our-pores, in-our-minds presence. 


Jill Soloway (Transparent, see earlier) inspired me this morning. In “She Wants It”, they talk about writing and blocking scenes in terms of motivation. Really, superobjective. In terms I understand. What does this character want? Need? What are they doing to get what they want/need? And beats, and how change in beats shifts the action, advances it. Stanislavskian stuff.

And from that, I started asking myself the question, how do the arms – of all the small rough creations/critters I’ve fashioned – how do these little arms link and create a bridge in space as they float out of the space capsule into the unknown?

have written. This blog, for instance. And last weekend I created two pieces of the puzzle. They still look like bits of sky or lawn (you know, those bits that you know belong but, which bit of sky? Which bit of green? Upside down or lengthways?) The pieces concerned, specifically, 1) a brazen pirate queen and 2) the sexual beings we are as children, adolescents, young humans. How discovery leads to seeking more, to that adventure, that teetering into space, floating tinglingly in the unknown.

And I’m writing more this weekend. I know this, because I’ve scheduled it. Set aside time. I will sit on my green ottoman close to a big picture window and feel like I’m outside while I’m inside. And I’ll do some puzzle arrangement. Stretch out the little arms and see if I can get the fingers to touch. Maybe even hold hands.

Am I mixing metaphors, or just mixing?

Jen and I emailed after her blog – I was suggesting (small) edits -and thought I was helpfully assisting with clarity of the idea. That exchange developed into a questioning of what kind of writer you (people) might be…

It was a terrific and affirmative exchange of words and ideas – as creatives usually do (not always, as can sometimes happen)… very unfiltered; thoughts off the tops of our heads; things from the heart…

and we’ll put it up in a week or so. Because it moves the process on so clearly.

Jen, the clown, just pre-re-mullet for another shoot… photo Jenifer Vuletic.
Jen, the clown, just pre-re-mullet for another shoot… photo Jenifer Vuletic.