We flipped the interview, putting the Inner Worlds Outer Spaces author through her vocational paces.
What would be your ultimate dream job? Do you ever wonder about the career that got away? Do you have the courage to pursue your dreams and obsessions, and transform them into your life’s work? In Inner Worlds Outer Spaces, Ceridwen Dovey amasses a series of intimate portraits of people who love what they do. The resulting profiles are both celebrations of the extraordinary and meaningful work done by those on paths less travelled, and explorations of fields of knowledge and expertise that are often inaccessible to outsiders.
While we’re on the topic of dream jobs: Dovey’s vocation of ‘fiction writer’ sounds pretty sweet. So, just for fun, we decided to put the In the Garden of the Fugitives author in the hot seat and flick some questions back her way.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I always knew I wanted to do something creative – I usually cycled between wanting to be a piano teacher, an actor, or writing books. But there was also a time when I wanted to be a witch or wizard when I grew up (after reading Ursula Le Guin’s The Earthsea Trilogy).
First job you ever had?
Waitressing at Café Eighty Ate in North Sydney – a café that is still going strong 25 years later!
Worst job you ever had?
At college in America, I was on the student ‘Dorm Crew’ – we were paid to clean the dormitory bathrooms and rooms of other students also at the university. It was always awkward if you happened to know the people whose toilet you were scrubbing.
Best job you ever had?
Being a fiction-writer: you get to live in worlds of your own creation for months and years at a time, yet it still counts as serious, adult work.
A career path you almost followed?
A profession you admire greatly?
Teaching. I’m from a family of teachers – my parents and sister have built careers around their passion for educating others – and I never stop being in awe of what it takes to be a great teacher.
Ultimate fantasy dream job?
I think I might already be living the dream as a mum and a writer – if I can figure out a way to keep surviving by my words and my wits, then this is all I’d ever want to do.
Ceridwen Dovey tackles ‘real work envy’ by tuning in to the fascinating vocational pathways of others.
The Lioness author shares a message of love, determination and hope.
The Australian actress on the daunting task of narrating The Living Sea of Waking Dreams audiobook for Booker Prize winning author (and family friend) Richard Flanagan.
The international ballet star on dance, deafness and discipline.
Lee Child and younger brother Andrew have collaborated for the first time on The Sentinel and Jack Reacher fans are in for a treat.
The Booker Prize winning author answers our questions about his strangely beautiful story about hope and love and orange-bellied parrots: The Living Sea of Waking Dreams.
The Future Women team reflect on the themes of Untold Resilience and extraordinary women interviewed for the book.
The inspirational author on gratefulness, savouring, self-love and getting through tough times.
The English Pastoral author reveals some lessons learned on and from the land.
The Either Side of Midnight author on comedy vs crime, writing advice and pointy things near eyeballs.
The bestselling author on thrilling reads and the things that scare her.
One of Australia's best-loved actors looks back on his lifetime in the spotlight.