Huzzah! Booktopia is delighted to hear that one of our favourite authors, Zoe Foster, has tied the knot with her longtime fiancée Hamish Blake. Zoe visited us for a second time earlier this year and was absolutely wonderful once again. She was kind enough to answer questions on Facebook from Booktopia readers and shared her tips on writing, thoughts on life and lots more. We thought we’d share some photos of her trip with you, along with some of her books and her answers to our famous Five Facetious Questions (you can also see her answers to our even more famous Ten Terrifying Questions here. Don’t forget to scroll down to see the interview with her very funny husband, as of this week.
Congrats to Zoe and Hamish from everyone here at Booktopia!
Five Facetious Questions
1. Every writer spends at least one afternoon going from bookshop to bookshop making sure his or her latest book is facing out and neatly arranged. How far have you gone to draw attention to your own books in a shop?
One afternoon? Clearly the authors you’re speaking are not only crafty bookshop re-arrangers, but they are liars too. I do some stealth interior decorating every time I walk past any book shop, always. My preferred move is the Stack and Sign, which involves me taking up a stack of my books to the counter, smiling like a loon, and asking the cute person serving “Would you like me to sign these?” before awkwardly explaining I’m not just a weird woman with a penchant for vandalism and megolomania, but the author. Once signed, those babies are front and centre, and sometimes even get a sticker saying “signed copy” which is terrifically enticing for potential buyers.
Drink the champagne, try not to get people’s names or current/exciting/noteworthy projects incorrect, drink the champagne, check my teeth for canape residue, drink the champagne, talk someone’s ears off about the merits of Tumblr, drink the champagne, wonder why everyone has left, go to drink the champagne but find there is none left, reluctantly go outside to find a taxi, arrive home and ravenously eat toast.
3. Some write because they feel compelled to, some are Artists and do it for the Muse, some do it for the cash (one buck twenty a book) and some do it because they think it makes them more attractive to the opposite sex – why do you do write? (NB: don’t say -‘cause I can’t sing, tap or paint!)
I write because I love to write. I find it easy, and enjoyable, and exciting and lots of other ’e’ words. To not write would surely cause me distress.
4. Have you ever come to the end of writing a particularly fine paragraph, paused momentarily, chuffed with your own genius, only to find you’ve been sitting at the computer nude or with your dress half-way over your head or shaving cream on your face or toilet paper sticking out the back of your undies or paused to find that you’re singing We are the Champions at the top of your voice, having exchanged the words ‘we are’ for ‘I am’ and dropping an ‘s’? No? Well, what’s your most embarrassing writing moment?
I have plenty of moments akin to the one you reference, but what is genuinely embarrassing for me is that I am a complete fraud. I don’t know what’s going on in the book world, I don’t know the hot new books or authors, (“Judy Blume. Now there’s an author!”) I never look cool and in-the-know when interviewed and it’s something I need to address, because it’s arrogant and lazy not to.
5. Rodin placed his thinker on the loo – where and/or when do you seem to get your best ideas?
In the shower, or on walks or runs. I was struggling to find an ending to Playing The Field and went for a run to clear my frustrated, exhausted brain. The idea hit me twenty minutes in and I bolted home and wrote furiously for hours. Mum’s always saying the brain needs breaks and new stimulation to function optimally, and I suppose that episode proved it for me.
Zoë, thank you for playing.
About the Contributor
Andrew Cattanach is a regular contributor to The Booktopia Blog. He has been shortlisted for The Age Short Story Prize and was named a finalist for the 2015 Young Bookseller of the Year Award. He enjoys reading, writing and sleeping, though finds it difficult to do them all at once.
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