THE dream for Sheridan Jobbins was always to write a book.
She just took the long road to get there, meandering through jobs in television, film and screenwriting during a long career, Ms Jobbins can finally list author as a destination on her professional roadmap.
Her novel, Wish You Were Here, “a rom-com memoir”, is about packing it in and hitting the road, hell for leather, after a marital breakdown.
Life is imitating art for the newly minted author, currently in the midst of an epic drive around Australia, with more than 283 stops promoting her book and talking to all sorts of bookish people.
Visiting local libraries, reading groups and book sellers, Ms Jobbins has just hit the New England region, stopping in at Tamworth and Armidale.
Wandering through a world of words, Ms Jobbins has encountered a few stereotypes in the book industry.
The book sellers often want to be writers while librarians are more inclined to simply spread the word, she said.
She might be a newcomer to the book-game, but it has been a lifelong dream to publish a book.
“From being a kid, I loved books like they were a magical thing,” she said
“I love the way a book puts another mind on and fills your imagination like no other.”
The author, who youngsters from 1980s might recognise from Simon Townsend’s Wonder World, says books are back on the rise.
She said they’re “filling a really vital hole in society, like cinemas used to”.
“I think it’s on the rise,” Ms Jobbins said.
“The paper is soothing, for some people a cup of tea and a book is a holiday.
“Your attention is chopped up by social media and you feel chopped up by it.
“Books filter that noise.”
She pointed to the growing number of readers’ clubs, even in Armidale, where she said there was about 30 groups.
Meeting a number of aspiring writers on her trek around the country, she had some simple advice to impart to someone looking at going down the writing road.
“A writer writes,” she said.
“You need to set aside time everyday.
“You can’t say ‘one day I’ll write something when I retire or carve out some time.
“It’s a muscle.”
Ms Jobbins heads off to Queensland following this leg of the tour, before swinging around and travelling through the North West with appearances in Goondiwindi, Moree and Narrabri on November 27.
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