‘The perfect is the enemy of the good’ – Voltaire

‘The perfect is the enemy of the good’ is a quotation from Voltaire, one that the Oxford-educated author Vikram Seth tossed up during our interview in 2006. I hunted out that interview this year, when I picked Seth’s novel An Equal Music off my bookshelves, a juicy read for our extended COVID-19 lockdown in Melbourne.

I may not have been blogging, but I have been reading. And, after the initial period of panic and distraction, I have managed to settle into a daily writing routine. What has emerged is a glorified plague diary, full of stats and lockdown trivia, but also plenty of commentary on the books I have been reading.

In March I had to cancel my plans for a new creative writing class. With no opportunity to do public readings or face-to-face teaching, I have decided to record some podcasts for Melbourne Writers Hub, using my lockdown reading and the authors who inspire me as a focus. What lessons can we learn from paying close attention to our favourite authors?

My first podcast is on Vikram Seth, and can be found on Melbourne Writers Hub website:

Carol’s podcast on Vikram Seth