The Countdown

It goes like this.

Eight year old girl ingests Enid Blyton and is in danger of never coming down the Faraway Tree. Writes first line of her own novel. Roughly five hundred times—and five hundred different lines, mostly about boarding school which her parents refuse to send her to.

Twelve year old girl may kill herself on horse because she thinks she can ride like Jill (Jill’s Gymkhana). Writes paragraph of own book. Roughly five hundred times—always with a girl and a horse involved.

Thirteen year old girl has competition with friend to see how many stories they can hand in for English homework—and how long they can be. English teacher takes stress leave.

Fifteen year old girl writes two full length novels—hand written, one with a girl and a boy she fancies almost as much as her horse and the other about her grandmother coming to Australia in the early 1900’s. (I would like to think this was progress but the quality of the writing suggests there was still a long way to go).

Twenty something woman, juggles medical career and growing up while writing romances. Well three chapters of.

Thirty something woman juggles academic career (masters and doctoral thesis and nonfiction book), marriage and two children, with three full length (140,000-150,000 words!) novels, two of which get looked at seriously by Random House but then get the thumbs down. The other contains an idea she hands to her husband who 15 years later turns up in his best-selling novel (the DNA father chase in The Rosie Project…so much better than the drama I had!).

Forty something woman writes 100 plus nonfiction articles, juggles a four million dollar research project and learn to sing and play the guitar. Maybe writing wasn’t her thing?

Fifty something woman writes 3 novels and 7 erotic romance novellas published with Siren Bookstrand in the USA. Has fun and gets lots of practice…while also penning the book that she has been dreaming about since sitting in the Faraway Tree.

Then it arrives.

There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it. So says Oscar Wilde.

So two things. It isn’t available until January 28th 2015, so I plan to really, really, enjoy this next month.

Then I guess I’ll just have to want something else.

My husband already has it figured—there are a million things to want that will not be forthcoming. Sales—whatever they are they could be better or someone outsells you. Reviews? Everyone to love it (okay I know this isn’t going to happen and have vowed not to read any reviews except official ones).

The one thing I do hope to get is for Text to take the next one, just on the final stages of polishing!

And I aim to enjoy the journey no matter what Wilde says—it’s been a long time getting here, and I really, really can’t sing.



About annebuist

Anne Buist is the Chair of Women’s Mental Health at the University of Melbourne and has 30 clinical and research experience in perinatal psychiatry. She works with Protective Services and the legal system in cases of abuse, kidnapping, infanticide and murder. Medea’s Curse is her first mainstream psychological thriller. Professor Buist is married to novelist Graeme Simsion and has two children.
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3 Responses to The Countdown

  1. Julianne says:

    Gees, what a slacker. What have you been doing with your time Anne? hee hee. Look forward to your Sisters in Crime event in Feb when you’ll be riding that high! Cheers, Julianne


  2. ‘It is better to travel hopefully than to arrive’ (Robert Louis Stephenson)? Nah!
    You’ll never have to worry about:
    But I know exactly where you’re coming from. In January I took my children down to the wishing tree by the Merri Creek. We all strung our secret wishes to the tree. Mine was for my book to find a publisher. I can’t think of anything more to wish for next time we go to the tree.


  3. What a great read about your journey. I know the feeling and can remember reading about this many moons ago! xx


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