Book Diaspora

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Today nine people wanted copies of books from me. Its fun to see your book suddenly taking wing and being sent to London, the Middle East, Africa, and other such places. Along with that joy, and the joy of people wanting to read my book baby altogether, I saw Deputy Dan into another shop today. Its a special one: the Christchurch Cathedral Gift Shop. The Cathedral people are really lovely to deal with. Nice folks. Every time that I see the book in a shop I pinch myself. Its all new and exciting.

To add to this day of book related progress, somebody pointed me to this. Which was a total surprise. I took the interview some time ago and had no idea it was up yet.

Last night I went to Oliver, as performed by Van Asch Deaf Education Centre’s Dramatic ensemble, with Daryl Low a local theatre director. It was lovely to be guested there, to see the kids putting their all into the play, and succeeding. MarkBerry was brilliant as Fagin and the voice team did really well: they spoke the words the kids signed. The pack of orphans and pickpockets were great. Watching the kids manage so many roles so well was fun in itself. I noticed Dwayne in particular seemed to surface in a lot of places in different guises! Many kids were deaf kids who attend mainstream schools and had learned New Zealand Sign Language for the first time so as to perform in their roles. They all did really good jobs.

I also saw the art of Da Won Choi displayed in the foyer of the hall. Da Won has been both blind and deaf since birth yet he had drawn amazing portraits of the cast in their costumes with great accuracy. I was especially stunned that he accurately captured the colours of Fagin in a mask that was displayed right down to getting Mark’s skin tone correct. There is a really special genius there.

When we arrived at the cottage I had been telling Daryl about a study that rated the sex appeal of cars. Daryl’s BMW, I ruefully informed him, was very sexy according to this study and my VW sedan is really not. To prove my point, as soon as we pulled up Haku came running into the car and straight into Daryls arms, to his vast surprise. Having said hi to Daryl, Haku plastered himself to me with his paws around my neck, in a way that said the only place he wanted me to be going was for another drive in the pretty car but this time with him.

The Writers Festival has been pretty special for me. I was able to meet and spend time with Margaret Mahy and some other lovely Christchurch authors. I’ve had a long time of never being in the right place at the right time, or of not having sufficient well being, so as to see Margaret. Meeting her now I felt like a giant puppy dog with over sized clumsy paws and an inconveniently waggy tail but she was very warm and welcoming. Thanks to her for her kindness.

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