Congrats to All: Aurealis Awards and Ditmar Award Finalists
It's Ditmar and Aurealis Awards time in Australia. The shortlists are out and it's a thrill to say that the latest anthology I've a story in, Bloodlines ed. Amanda Pillar (Ticonderoga Publications), is a finalist for both awards.
There are plenty of great writers on the lists here and rather than congratulate everyone individually I've attached the links to the short listed works below.
Congrats to the editor of Bloodlines, Amanda Pillar, along with Ticonderoga Publications. I would also like to personally congratulate fellow Perth writer, Stephanie Gunn, whose novella from the same anthology has been short listed in the category of Best Fantasy Novella (Gunn is also a finalist for another novella in Hear me Roar ed Liz Grzyb).
Aurealis Awards Link
Ditmar Awards Link
Short Story Recommendations
It's not often you find Australian short fic being recommended so I feel humbled that Fossick Book Review has recommended one of my stories. 'Reading Coffee' (originally published in Overland 204 in 2011) was the first story that I was truly proud of and it's recommended here alongside, Angela Slatter's (who is a giant of short spec-fic) 'Brisneyland by Night'. Once again the link is attached below.
Twenty One New Zealand Books We're Looking Forward to in 2016
The next anthology I've a story in, At the Edge ed. Dan Rabarts & Lee Murray is on this list of New Zealand books to look forward to reading. It's released in June.
21 NZ Books to Look forward to 2016
Just finished Nights at the Circus by the incredible Angela Carter. It's a genre defying tour de force, well worth savouring and it deserves all the kudos it has received. The perpetual dichotomy of the winged heroine, Fevers makes for one of the great characters in literature. It's already one of my all time favourite novels.
- I've a few pages to go in To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. And yes, Harper Lee ironically passed away when I was about midway through. It was a sad day for literature but what a legacy Lee left behind her with TKAM. I can see why it's deemed an all time classic; the narrative voice of Scout is both innocent and gutsy, allowing for a beautiful observational voice. I don't think I'll read the recently released prequel/sequel Go Set a Watchman though. From the snippets I've read about Go Set a Watchman, I wouldn't want to tarnish my reading of what I believe the Finch family stand for in TKAM.
- The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes. Interesting look into Shostakovich, his music, and his relationship with the totalitarian regime (what Barnes aptly labels "his relationship with 'Power'"). The prose, as always with Barnes, has a pure feel due to his strong use of nominalisation throughout, and let's face it, little imagery. I'm almost at the end of this novel too. I've enjoyed it so far, but to be honest, at times I wanted a little more from the narrative, especially after reading Barnes' captivating Arthur and George a couple of years ago. Still, a good, solid read.
Political Gripe: Okay, we can't really say too much Down Under after the rise of Tony Abbott but at least he's now fallen. Yet the Americans have trumped (or drumpfed if you've seen John Oliver's comical segment) us in the Mad Tea Party stakes. What's dangerous about the far right is that it plays on fear and division rather than inclusiveness. Wake up, America! This guy, Drumpf, is leading you down a foolishly dangerous and bigoted path.