27 February, 2010

Er, hm! (Is this thing working?)

Yes, I will be doing a live cross to Radio NZ this morning, between 9 and 10, to talk about the upcoming Writers and Readers Week in Wellington. Listen in - I will try to sparkle.

15 February, 2010

Upcoming appearances (besides Wellington)

I will be live on ABC Radio, talking about the upcoming Wellington Festival, on Saturday morning, 27 Feb—details when I know them.

I'll be giving a lecture that's open to the public on Wednesday, 3 March, at the University of Canberra, as part of the Faculty of Arts and Design’s Art, and other Questions lecture series—some of the uni's Bachelor of Writing students will also be in attendance. I am told that I'll discuss my creative process and the realities of life as an award winning writer. Which will take about three minutes (joking, Tony!), so there'll be plenty of time for questions and answers or just, you know, general heckling, dodging of shoes and the like.

Over here is an interview I did with the NSW Writers' Centre to drum up business for the workshop 'Blood, Boggarts and Battlestars: An Introduction to Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Writing', which I'm running over there on Saturday, 6 March, to which Sydneysiders and anyone prepared to commute is very welcome.
Come and dig around in the three genres that make up spec fic today: science fiction, fantasy and horror. You can go anywhere in science fiction; just ask Margaret Atwood. And fantasy will take you places you only ever dreamed of; Stephanie Meyer will tell you that. As for horror, there are no holds barred there; learn to turn readers' stomachs along with the darkest of dark Palahniuk.
It'll be six hours of stimulation and hard work, and I can pretty much guarantee we'll all be exhausted (and, I hope, exhilarated!) at the end of it. Details on the NSWWC website.

[Insert 2 weeks in New Zealand here.]

At the end of April, I'll be doing a couple of things for the Northern Rivers Writers' Centre. The first is some SuperSessions on YA fiction on Wednesday, 5 May. They say:
If you’re writing YA fiction, or planning to, this is a not-to-be-missed opportunity. Submit a short sample of your work, a first chapter of your manuscript or a story outline, and book in for a consultation to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of your project.
Participants will get 40 minutes of consultation apiece.

Then the next day (Thursday, 6 May), there's 'Twist in the Tale', a masterclass on short story writing:
The short story is a strange and intense beast. Yes, it’s a great place to rehearse for the long haul of the novel, but it’s also its own creature. In this masterclass, Margo will explore the balance between Keeping It Simple (and Keeping Yourself Sane) and the layering, meaning-multiplying and reverberation-creation that make shorts such powerful shots of story. There will be structured writing exercises, and a critiquing session based on pre-reading of work from each member of the class.
Details on the Centre's website.

A seemingly loooong way off, but it'll probably pounce on me sooner than expected, is the other NSW Writers' Centre marathon, 'Less is More—Writing Short Stories' on Saturday, 19 June. More about that closer to the time.

Tansy Rayner Roberts has also included me in her clutch of snapshotted authors, which is part of a move to pin down any Australian spec fic author who's still capable of moving and get them to cough up a few truisms, prior to Aussiecon 4—details are here.

Yes, so. Busy. (And a wee bit nervous.)

04 February, 2010

A belated snipe at some 3-month-old news

News of Tender Morsels' WFA win was apparently broadcast on 2CH on 8 November last year.
The author has responded [to the 'sordid wretchedness' accusation] by questioning the assumption that children have the luxury of an innocent childhood. Her aim, she says, was to equip readers for life by showing them “the sorts of issues other people encounter.” [What I actually said was: "How on earth do people imagine we equip children for life, if we never show them the sorts of issues other people encounter...?"]

One of the tragedies of 21st century life is the loss of juvenile innocence we once took for granted. A discerning reader once said, “Some books are not for me, and some are not for me now.” Margo Lanagan’s Tender Morsels is a case in point. I’m Rod Benson for nswchurches.com
...and I shake the dust of Margo's smutty book from my sandals. Without bothering to crack the spine myself, of course.

02 February, 2010

ABR fave Aus. novel poll

And, cool! The Australian Book Review's poll of 290 favourite Australian books, voted by the magazine's readers, includes Tender Morsels!

Locus Recommended Reading List for 2009

Oh, this is nice! I've got two short stories:
  • "Ferryman", from Sharyn November's Firebirds Soaring, and
  • "Living Curiosities", from Deb Noyes's Sideshow
on the list, as well as my novella,
  • "Sea-Hearts", from Keith Stevenson's X6 (and yay to Paul Haines, whose "Wives" is on there, too!)
On top of that, Jonathan Strahan's Year's Best (with "Ferryman" in it), and Rich Horton's, with "The Fifth Star in the Southern Cross" (originally published in Jack Dann's Dreaming Again), and Ellen Datlow's The Best Horror of the Year, containing "The Goosle" are in the collections list.

And among the collections, Deb Biancotti's A Book of Endings is up there too—which I launched here in Sydney, so I can take some credit, can't I?—and Libba Bray's Going Bovine is on the Young Adult list, and heaven knows that would have gone nowhere without my blurb! :D

So, really, the list is All About Me. Most satisfactory.