On the Couch with Tobias Madden

Tobias Madden AAR On the CouchWho is Tobias Madden?
I’m a writer, editor, publisher (now officially!), performer, teacher, remedial therapist, and soon-to-be husband.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
Honestly, as corny as it sounds, nothing. My life has been full of crazy, unique, incredible experiences, so I consider myself very lucky. I try to just take everything as it comes and be open to new things. Right now, I’ve taken a step away from performing to focus on writing and publishing, and I’m having the most surreal, wonderful time.

Who inspires you and why?
In terms of writing, my biggest inspiration has always been JK Rowling, and I’ve watched every second of every documentary and interview she’s ever done. She is a GENIUS. Oprah is another huge inspiration for me, and I love her grateful approach to life so much. My fiancé Daniel is my other biggest inspiration. He’s a brilliant performer and his dreams are endless. I love nothing more than helping him work towards his goals.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Hopefully write books! I’m really passionate about writing for teenagers, especially LGBTQ+ teens. Historically, there has been very little representation for queer teens in commercial fiction, and I really want to write books that make these kids feel seen and heard and valued. We’ve come a long way in the last few years, but there’s still a long way to go!

Favourite holiday destination and why?
ITALY. It just speaks to my soul! I’d give anything to be sitting down at the marina in Positano right now, eating a big a bowl of pasta, sipping an espresso, and soaking up the breathtaking views.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I’m a big, dorky tourist, so I’d definitely take them to Circular Quay to see the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House. I’ve only lived in Sydney for a bit over a year, and I still find these iconic Sydney monuments totally breathtaking, especially when it’s a beautiful day down at the Harbour.

What are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading Four Dead Queens – a debut young adult fantasy novel by fellow Aussie, Astrid Scholte. It’s so wonderful!

What are you currently listening to?
Currently listening to my usual music theatre playlists. At the moment there’s a lot of Muriel’s Wedding, Mean Girls, High School Musical, The Greatest Showman etc. You know, all the good stuff!

Happiness is?
A great book and a cup of coffee. Or sitting at my writing desk (with a cup of coffee). Or spending time with my beautiful fiancé (over a cup of coffee).

What does the future hold for you?
Well, I hope the future holds a lot of happiness. I hope to grow my publishing business, Underdog Books, into something really wonderful. I hope to write stories that leave a mark on the world in some way. I hope to have a beautiful family with my partner, Daniel. I also hope I can retire in Tuscany, and eat and drink and read and laugh and enjoy life to its very fullest!

Tobias is the Editor of Underdog: #LoveOzYA Short Stories – which is available from all leading book retailers including Booktopia. For more information, visit: www.underdogshortstories.com for details.

Image: Tobias Madden (supplied)