Georgia Madden, author of Confessions of a Once Fashionable Mum
Tell us about your latest creation:
Confessions of a Once Fashionable Mum follows Ally Bloom, first-time mum and fashionista extraordinaire, as she struggles to find her feet on the suburban SAHM circuit.
I live with my husband and two children on Sydney’s North Shore.
When you were a kid, what did you want to become? An author?:
An author, always! As a child, I had a funny habit of going into bookshops and touching the spot on the shelf where my book would one day sit. Little did I know that it would take me 40+ years to build up the courage to actually give it a go.
What do you consider to be your best work? Why?:
My children. They’re seven and ten, and I’m still in awe that my husband and I actually made them. They’re fabulous (of course) and nothing like either of us.
Describe your writing environment to us – your writing room, desk, etc.; is it ordered or chaotic?:
After years of working at a tiny desk in the corner of the bedroom, I finally have an office – with a door! That door is the greatest gift of all. When it’s shut, my kids know that I’m in the thick of things and Daddy’s in charge.
When you’re not writing, who/what do you like to read?:
I recently read Hannah Kent’s Burial Rights (mind-blowing), and re-read Elizabeth Gilbert’s The Signature of All Things, just to drink in her delicious prose again.
What was the defining book(s) of your childhood/schooling?:
The Magic Faraway Tree. Isn’t it everyone’s?
If you were a literary character, who would you be?:
I still feel like Bridget Jones, fumbling and bumbling through life and hoping for the best.
Apart from books, what do you do in your spare time (surprise us!)?:
I’m an interiors journalist, and write on everything from paint trends to updating your front fence for the likes of House & Garden, Inside Out and Home Beautiful.
I’m also, for the first time, class mum at my son’s school. It’s a tougher gig than I’d anticipated – the mums are pretty forthright with their opinions – but it’s all great material for my next book!
What is your favourite food and favourite drink?:
I drink far too much coffee and diet coke, and single-handedly keep the avocado industry in profit.
Who is your hero? Why?:
My grandmother Gang Gang on my father’s side. As a young woman, she’d race the train from Sydney to Melbourne in her open top car. Family folklore has it that she always won. She was the only female in her year to study architecture at university; read and argued profusely; and was a dab hand at DIY.
Crystal ball time – what is the biggest challenge for the future of books and reading?:
The demise of small, independent bookshops. Online sites are great for nabbing a bargain, but nothing compares to perusing the shelves of your local bookstore, and getting advice on great new reads from people who love books as much as you do. I’ve discovered so many wonderful books this way, and I’ll be forever grateful that I did.