Last Saturday I came home just before midnight after a very long day investigating how I live through my communication. I found special k just where I most expected him to be: lying splat asleep on the couch, with a weird French film on the tele.
I touched his face just for the pleasure of watching his eyes open and go from sleep to sleepy adoration.
“I have to tell you something,” he said.
“It’s about the award, isn’t it?” I had remembered about 2 hours earlier, and my heart had started thumping away in my chest; the Valerie Parv Award had been announced that evening.
Special k looked at me with those still-asleep eyes and didn’t say anything. That silence gave my mind a lot of space for thoughts like Shit, I didn’t even place, did I?
Then every feature in his face focused on me, his eyes sharp with intent. “You won!”
Now I really wouldn’t be coy admitting that a small voice in my head went “of course I won” at this point. But it didn’t. I was absolutely and completely floored by the news. Then I laughed a lot. And then I realised:
This changes everything. I now have a mentor for a year. And not just any mentor – Valerie Parv has been successfully, and more importantly professionally writing romance for 20 years. She’s also a great spokesperson for romance within Australia, and an experienced teacher of the craft.
Over the weekend I made a commitment: I will be the breadwinner in my family by my 30th birthday. Being mentored by Val (fairy godmother) is the first, brilliant step in that direction.