12 August, 2008

From high above the city

I'm here at the bank, having run out of work and turned off the clock. Outside is sunny, windy and probably cold. I'm on the 28th floor; I can see all the way to Coogee and beyond to the south, over to, hmmm, that might be Rose Bay out to the east, and to the mountains in the west. Not quite such a good view to the north without the Pope beetling about there, but hey, you can't have everything.

Yesterday I dropped in at Galaxy Bookshop in York Street and picked up the August Locus, and found the first review I've seen of Nick Gevers' Extraordinary Engines: The Definitive Steampunk Anthology, by Rich Horton:
To begin with the highlights: Margo Lanagan's 'Machine Maid' and Jeff VanderMeer's 'Fixing Hanover'...the story works particularly well because of Lanagan's fine writing, her capturing of the heroine's emotions, and the slightly surprising changes she rings on the more or less expected ending. While Lanagan's story seems traditional steampunk to me - a Victorian era setting with added technology - VanderMeer's is different...
So I get to be both traditional and definitive with my first-ever steampunk story. Very satisfying.

Then I got to Charles's editorial, where, yes, he was a whole lot healthier - healthy enough for cake, champagne and opera, and you can't ask for more than that. But he also said:
Wow! What a year this is for new books. One of the best in decades...In YA novels, Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan is my favorite. Its combination of fantasy, realism and horror is perfectly balanced.
Perfectly balanced, hear that? So you can use it for your posture lessons - after you've read and been amazed by it, of course.

What else has been happening? Oh, secret dinners! My lips are sealed. Reading, reading, reading for the Melbourne Writers' Festival panels. A Draftbusters workshop on the weekend - we put in a marathon effort in honour of the Olympics and I have a new resolution to write 4 pages a day or bust, work or no work. Ascham School's Writers' Evening, checking out the upcoming competition - and it's fierce! A close shave with the jury duty - I got out of it this time, but they'll be after me again, come October.

And work. Yeah. I'm juggling two bitsy jobs that seem to be slotting quite nicely into each other's slack times. This bank one is city based, the other can be done anywhere, pretty much.

Okay, I've got 3 pages of my daily 4 to do now. Off I go.


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