My life in a minute – 1 March 2012

MelbourneSince my last update I’ve been in Victoria splitting my time between Melbourne and the Yarra Valley. Oh, and the giant Officeworks that is somewhere in between. I’ve been focusing on writing my book and every time I feel like procrastinating I manage to find some compelling reason to go to Officeworks. Usually, it’s because I have a desperate need to get that exact bulldog clip which, of course, will be instrumental in helping me complete the next chapter.

Once I find that bulldog clip, I just have to get that pen holder. Followed by that magazine rack. And then I need to drive the ute in because I have to drag home that giant whiteboard so I can map out the entire chapter by chapter outline. Yes, I have bought ALL of these things (and more) in the past week. Needless to say, I’m keeping Officeworks in business. Here’s what else is going on in my life …

Buying: Apart from half the inventory of Officeworks, I’ve been buying books through Amazon. Yes, I went on an online shopping frenzy. These books include Story by Robert McKee, the screenwriters’ bible. I once had the opportunity to attend one of McKee’s famous three-day seminars but had to pull out at the last minute. Possibly, I was distracted by an Officeworks store. I do regret not taking this opportunity but I’m loving his book. If you’re interested in Screenwriting, you might be interested in our course with talented Australian screenwriter Tim Gooding.


One of the other books in my stash is Crafting with Cat Hair. Yes you read that correctly. People either think this is gorgeous (typically, these are cat owners) or they think it’s the grossest thing they’ve ever seen. Basically, you save the hair from your cat and then turn it into toys. I’m thinking of doing this in my spare time and then opening an online store on Etsy. Ok, really, this time I’m kidding.

Listening to
: My yoga instructor’s voice on my MP3 player as I attempt to do yoga. I know it’s hard to believe, but I’m trying out yoga. Basically, because I’ve heard so much about it. Regular readers will know that my true love is boxing. There is, quite frankly, nothing quite like the sweet sound of landing a killer punch. However, you do need a competent sparring partner (or padder) for this to actually work. Whereas you can downward dog on your own any time, anywhere.

: Next week I’ll be travelling to the US for a week to go to South by South West. I’m sure my brain is going to explode as there are so many amazing speakers, topics and ideas. Last year, it was great to hear from the likes of Gary Vaynerchuk, Tim Ferriss, Guy Kawasaki, Brian Solis and a host of other great speakers, thinkers and entrepreneurs.
SXSW 2012 logo

I’m even more thrilled that some of my fab friends are attending as well so I’m sure it will be a week of inspiration, information and a fair dose of Texas BBQ and margaritas thrown in.

Last year, I went as a “media” delegate, which meant I had certain obligations I had to meet. You can view some of those posts herehere and here.

However, that ended up taking up so much of my time that I didn’t get to cover all the areas I was personally interested in. So, this year, I’ve decided to attend as a regular delegate. This means I can attend the sessions that I’m personally passionate about. I’m keen to report back via this blog and am currently deciding on whether I should do this via video or a written post. If you have any preferences, let me know in the comments.

Booking tickets to: After SXSW, I’m heading to New York. And I can’t wait to see the play Seminar starring Alan Rickman (yes, Snape in Harry Potter) currently on Broadway. It’s about four aspiring novelists who sign up for private writing classes with an international literary figure, played by Alan Rickman. As you can see, it’s right up my alley and I’m thrilled that I’ve scored some tickets.
Seminar play
Can’t wait for: Our renovations to be over. We’re almost there but it’s certainly been a challenge when you have a day without electricity, followed by a day without a toilet, followed by a day without internet. I’ve been overstaying my welcome in cafes with toilet, power outlets and wifi!

: This video called “We Are The Future” which was originally created for an industry conference to stimulate discussion within the marketing industry. It’s insightful. And very very scary.

About Valerie Khoo

Valerie Khoo is founder and national director of the Australian Writers' Centre, the country's leading centre for writing courses. She is a journalist, blogger and author. Her latest book is "Power Stories: The 8 stories you MUST tell to build an epic business" (Wiley). Valerie is a keynote speaker, small business commentator, and investor and mentor to startups and businesses in Australia.
  • Kelly Exeter

    Wow Valerie!! You definitely have a lot going on :)

    Have an amazing time at SXSW – can’t wait to read your posts about it!

    • Anonymous

      Thanks Kelly. Never a dull moment around here!