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y separately published work icon A Novel Idea single work   autobiography  
Issue Details: First known date: 2019... 2019 A Novel Idea
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'A unique, intimate portrait of writer’s working life,as experienced by one of Australia’s most highly regarded novelists and artists.

'A Novel Idea is a memoir in photoessay form that follows Fiona McGregor’s life as she writes her award-winning novel Indelible Ink. It is a tongue-in-cheek rumination on the monotony and loneliness of the novelist’s daily life, and the act of endurance the writer must perform.

'Through an extended sequence of photographs taken on a hand-me-down camera, accompanied by terse, evocative captions, the book spans several years of labour and procrastination, elation and despair. The details of the outside world intrude as McGregor works on the novel alone in her Bondi flat, with nothing but a desk, a pin-board, a laptop and a cat, and in studio spaces in Berlin and Estonia.

'McGregor’s voice is wry, vulnerable, at times caustic, capturing the colloquial qualities of her fiction and the durational nature of her performance art via the ephemeral and essential thoughts that take up an author’s days, weeks, and years.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Artarmon, North Sydney - Lane Cove area, Sydney Northern Suburbs, Sydney, New South Wales,: Giramondo Publishing , 2019 .
      image of person or book cover 64635747997381668.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 352p.p.
      Note/s:
      • Published June 2019.

      ISBN: 9781925818062
      Series: y separately published work icon Giramondo Poets Giramondo Publishing (publisher), Artarmon : Giramondo Publishing , 2006- Z1440074 2006 series - publisher

Works about this Work

April in Nonfiction Sarah Burnside , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , April 2020;

— Review of Australia's Original Languages : An Introduction R. M. W. Dixon , 2019 reference ; A Novel Idea Fiona McGregor , 2019 single work autobiography
Desk Work : A Novel Idea by Fiona McGregor Jennifer Mae Hamilton , 2019 single work essay
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , July 2019;

'One morning I listened to Fiona McGregor talk about her writing on a podcast as I washed a dusty pink cashmere sweater I bought from an op shop for five dollars. Although it was before nine and I was still at home, I had started work for the day. Multitasking by doing laundry and listening to a podcast felt legitimate to classify as ‘on the clock’ because of several factors: the time and day of the week (Monday, 8.45am), the match between the manual activity and a key theme in my current research (housework) and, primarily, the direct relationship between the podcast and my task for the morning (drafting this review of McGregor’s A Novel Idea). While a complicated, informal, internal algorithm determined the legitimacy of this action, I felt justified nonetheless. Even if the difference between work and life is only ever one of degree, I won’t tell HR.'  (Introduction)

Fiona McGregor : A Novel Idea Justine Hyde , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Saturday Paper , 22-28 June 2019;

'In her work as a performance artist, Fiona McGregor is no stranger to physical and psychological endurance, often sitting uncomfortably still for hours on end. However, it is the more challenging act of endurance – writing a novel – that she documents in this photo essay, A Novel Idea. In the epilogue, McGregor laments that novel writing “is mystified, romanticised or, conversely, trivialised”. She says, “Let this document then show how banal, gruelling and lonely it really is.” And so she does.' (Introduction)

April in Nonfiction Sarah Burnside , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , April 2020;

— Review of Australia's Original Languages : An Introduction R. M. W. Dixon , 2019 reference ; A Novel Idea Fiona McGregor , 2019 single work autobiography
Fiona McGregor : A Novel Idea Justine Hyde , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Saturday Paper , 22-28 June 2019;

'In her work as a performance artist, Fiona McGregor is no stranger to physical and psychological endurance, often sitting uncomfortably still for hours on end. However, it is the more challenging act of endurance – writing a novel – that she documents in this photo essay, A Novel Idea. In the epilogue, McGregor laments that novel writing “is mystified, romanticised or, conversely, trivialised”. She says, “Let this document then show how banal, gruelling and lonely it really is.” And so she does.' (Introduction)

Desk Work : A Novel Idea by Fiona McGregor Jennifer Mae Hamilton , 2019 single work essay
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , July 2019;

'One morning I listened to Fiona McGregor talk about her writing on a podcast as I washed a dusty pink cashmere sweater I bought from an op shop for five dollars. Although it was before nine and I was still at home, I had started work for the day. Multitasking by doing laundry and listening to a podcast felt legitimate to classify as ‘on the clock’ because of several factors: the time and day of the week (Monday, 8.45am), the match between the manual activity and a key theme in my current research (housework) and, primarily, the direct relationship between the podcast and my task for the morning (drafting this review of McGregor’s A Novel Idea). While a complicated, informal, internal algorithm determined the legitimacy of this action, I felt justified nonetheless. Even if the difference between work and life is only ever one of degree, I won’t tell HR.'  (Introduction)

Last amended 26 Sep 2019 09:26:46
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