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Interview: Frances Hall talks about Scatterlogical Wisdom


Frances Hall has written her memoir, Scatterlogical Wisdom. This reflective look at Frances’ journey through life contains hearty helpings of humour. This book will not fail to inspire readers to Kia Kaha—stay strong in adversity—and laugh the socks off the many absurdities of life. Frances talks to NZ Booklovers.


Tell us a little about Scatterlogical Wisdom.

Scatterlogical is a word I created to reflect the process of bringing all my disparate careers and roles together. From bunrunning to lollipop making to sales, writing, financial management, tour leading and parenting, I’ve had a crack at anything that came my way.


What inspired you to write this book?

I initially started the book as a legacy for my children but it then grew into something much wider. I had the privilege of writing and presenting over 800 radio scripts for the ZB network. They reflected my observations of life, humour and the human condition. I felt that they were worth preserving in print and I have used some of them in the book.


What was your routine or process when writing this book?

I think the title says it all. It took five years to write and rather than an orderly approach, I wrote when the words erupted in my head and spilled on to the page. Slowly but surely they formed themselves into a book.


If a soundtrack was made to accompany this book, name a song or two you would include.

Super Trooper, Dancing Queen, I’ve had the Time of my Life and I’m Leaving on a Jet Plane.


If your book was made into a movie, who would you like to see playing yourself?

Julia Dreyfus or Antonia Prebble.


What did you enjoy the most about writing your memoir?

I loved reliving the experiences that inspired the words…the places I went on my travels and the places I went in my head and my heart.


What did you do to celebrate finishing this book?

All I can say is that a considerable amount of prosecco has been consumed.


What was your children’s response to Scatterlogical Wisdom?

They are still reading it but I suspect much eye-rolling. However I don’t think they will be surprised.


What do you hope people will take away from reading your book?

I hope people will have a good laugh and be inspired to tackle life on with gutsy determination. You can survive, you can heal and you can prosper. We are New Zealanders and we should be thrilled to bits that we live in such a wonderful place and that our benign environment allows us such freedom.


What is the favourite book you have read so far this year and why?

I’ve probably read ten this year but American Dirt stands out. It’s about a woman form Acapulco who had to flee to the US with her young son after the local cartel murdered her reporter husband. A deep insight into what desperate migrants face.


What’s next on the agenda for you?

I have another book in my head but there are global children to visit, travel adventures to be had and rich lessons to learn from my friends, family and faith. I’m only 72 and feel like I’m just getting started!


Scatterlogical Wisdom is published by Wild Side Publishing

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