Tuesday, March 16, 2010

farmdoc's blog post number 695

When I travel I tend to stay within my comfort zone. So I’ve never been a big buyer of Lonely Planet travel books. I recall only ever buying two: one about Italy and the other about California. Which of course is not to belittle Lonely Planet’s phenomenal success since Tony and Maureen Wheeler published their first travel guide in the 1970s. In 2007 the company, which now publishes about 500 titles, became 75% owned by the BBC, with Tony and Maureen retaining 25%. The Wheeler Centre – the centrepiece of Melbourne’s UNESCO City of Literature initiative – is named after these Wheelers, though I don’t think they’ve an active role in the Centre’s ongoing activities. In my compendium last 28 November I wrote that Sweetheart Vivienne had been invited to read at the Centre. She read last evening – the third in the Centre’s ‘Debut Mondays’ series featuring first-book authors. Sweetheart Vivienne read first – a total of 10 minutes from Chapter 1 of Alzheimer’s: A Love Story. She read clearly, confidently and expressively. And she looked beautiful. I was – and am – so proud of her. She was followed by a philosopher, a novelist, and a performance poet. All four readings were of exceptionally high standard. My Sweetheart was well supported by relatives and friends – to whom she was grateful. Just as the literary community and the public at large should be grateful to the Wheelers. Very grateful.

1 comment:

Meg said...

Congratulations WriterBee!