Neuroticarium

tomorrow Sarah Jansen is launching her new quarterly zine, Neuroticarium issue 1! It’s a zine  that’s all about mental health and neuroses and all that kinda jazz.

I will be reading, and so will Jess Knight and Sharmini Kumar. Tomorrow (19th) from 2pm at The Burrow in Fitzroy. Snacks provided (very good) and also if youbuy a copy of the zine you get a lolly bag!

The event is on facebook if you want a reminder.

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YA lit fest

This Saturday at Doncaster Library there will be a whole bunch of cool YA stuff happening! Come and see Alice Pung, Rebecca Lim, Melissa Keil and me talk about ………. YA ……… stuff.

There will be food trucks and book signings and we can hang out! It’s free!

2019

I have two very big things coming out in 2019.

The first is Highway Bodies, a book about queer teens who have to rely upon each other to survive during a zombie apocalypse. It’s set in Australia, and there are three POV characters:

  • Jojo, a non binary DORK whose town goes into lockdown when some weird things start happening at the local hospital
  • Dee, the bi drummer in a band who has gone to a house in the bush for a weekend then discovers something in town is very wrong
  • a character who is mostly unnamed until the very end, she is a trans girl who lives in rural Australia, where the zombie infection first starts out

Highway Bodies is going to come out early 2019 with Echo Publishing and you can read the short story it started out being here.

 

The second thing is Kindred, an anthology of queer #loveozya stories by queer Australian authors. The other authors are:

  • Christos Tsiolkas
  • Benjamin Law
  • Jen Wilde
  • Ellen van Neerven
  • Marlee Jane Ward
  • Claire G. Coleman
  • Erin Gough
  • Nevo Zisin
  • Omar Sakr
  • Jax Jacki Brown
  • Michael Earp

My story is set in the near-future, where sea levels have risen and everyone lives close to, around, or in the sea. Marling goes out fishing one day, but an unexpected storm pings ver boat to somewhere ve’s never been before, where they meet New, an enby who lives in a cabin in a mangrove swamp.

Kindred will be coming out mid next year with Walker Books.

IDAHOBIT, Feminist Writers Festival and Continuum

Hey folks, I am doing a few things in the next four weeks and they’re all a bit different.

On May 17 for IDAHOBIT (international day against homophobia, biphobia, intersexphobia and transphobia) me and Katherine Back (Concrete Queers) and Erin Kyan (Love and Luck Podcast) are gonna talk about zines. It’s also the launch of a free zine created by locals around the area to celebrate IDAHOBIT. It starts at 4pm and is at Eltham Library, and there’s a Facebook event too.

On May 25 I’ll be helping kick off the start of the 2018 Feminist Writers Festival. With Evelyn Araluen, Alison Croggon, Foong Ling Kong, Ann-Marie Priest and Jamila Rizvi, we’re going to talk about Australian feminist texts. It’s at LOOP Bar and it’s gonna be a great night,and you can grab a ticket here!

At the start of June, I am one of the Guests of Honour (very fancy) at Continuum Convention. The program is yet to be announced but I know we’re gonna be talking about spec fic all long weekend so if that is your jam, consider coming along. You can check out their website here.

 

Aurealis awards

Ida has been shortlisted in the Aurealis awards!! (update from last post, Ida won the People’s Choice award at the Vic Prems awards!)

Alongside some of my fricken fav books, too!!!

The other shortlistees are:

In the Dark Spaces by Cally Black
Frogkisser! by Garth Nix
This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada
Psynode by Marlee Jane Ward
The Undercurrent by Paula Weston

HOW COOL IS IT

the victorian premier’s lit awards

IDA IS NOMINATED!!!!!!!!! WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In the young adult category (of course), alongside Living on Hope Street by Demet Divaroren and Because of You by Pip Harry which are both great. (!!!!)

WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

All the other nominations you can see on the Wheeler Centre’s website here.

AND IDA’S ON THERE!!!!????

And, if you are so inclined, you can vote for Ida in the people’s choice award here. That would be real nice!!!

found family

This weekend I only ended up doing one of my Continuum panels, Queering Space, because I was sick. An audience member asked us the question: what do we look for in sci fi stories that isn’t necessarily explicit queer representation, but rather what themes resonate with us as queer people.

I thought about it for a bit because I wanted to say something positive, because I’m finding lately that I am speaking about what is hard about being queer, rather than what is good about it (of course these discussions are important, but I’m trying to shift my focus onto the positives).

I said found family. A lot of us are estranged, or not out, or our blood families just don’t quite get it. But our found families are safe places, we are loved there without any exception to do with our queerness. They see us for everything we are, and we see them, and there is so much love.

(The audience member then said I had to read Becky Chambers’ books and I’m planning on it.)

I feel like the queer community is a kind of family, and I know it has its flaws and is still not a safe place for everyone. But when there is suffering within that community, we see it, we recognise it, because it’s our own suffering, too. And it does bring us together.

And while the stories that do have the kind of found family vibe to them, may not explicitly be queer, there is a recognition there. The group of characters who have found each other, who love and care for each other in the vast emptiness of space, their ship is full of light and air.

 

PS. if you know books about queers in space that fit this theme, please let me know!

emerging writers festival + continuum con

hey friends, I’m doing some things soon and it’d be real nice if people came. First up is Continuum 13, a fan-run convention for all things nerdy and SFF.

It goes for four days, 9-12 of June. I’ll be there on the 11&12th, on Sunday I’ll be doing a panel about how pronouns other than he and she are used in spec fic. It’s gonna be great. On Monday I’m doing two panels, one on ZINES and another on queers in space. I mean. My favourite things. I’m super thrilled??!??!

For Emerging Writers fest I am doing a couple of things. The first is part of the YA Masterclass on the 15th. Look!!! at!!! my!!! company!!!!! I’m doing a session in the morning about the ~hows and whys~ of YA fiction. (The why is because it’s fucken GREAT)

And on the 17th, it’s school formal time babey!!!! (Again, look @ my company????!) We’re all going to read out some letters to our teenage selves and it’s going to be really embarassing and fun. Pls come and dance with us!

reading matters

The Centre for Youth Literature run a conference called Reading Matters, which is all about children’s literature. It’s a biannual conference and it ran over the past four days. I was invited to speak there and it was The Best. (I could only attend on the Friday, which makes me eternally sad).

There were SO MANY cool people there and I had a blast, so here’s some word vomit.

Continue reading

handy links for writing

OK so one of the things I’m very bad at is thinking of names for stuff. There is a cafe in my short story Wolfskin that is a central location in the story, the River and Wheel.

I got the name from this hipster business name generator. Basically it takes two random words and puts an “and” in the middle, gives you a nice font, it even generates a logo. And then you’ve got a business. This saves me a lot of time because I will spend AGES trying to name stuff, so if you see a “x and y” business in any of my stories, it’s probably from that website.

There’s also a floor plan generator that I have been meaning to use. I had previously been using the Sims, but then I’d get too distracted and would just play the game until 4am. Both are pretty useful in their own ways. Usually I try and sketch out rooms and places but then my sense of space can be pretty poor.

I don’t really have any stories (at the moment) planned that need a map, BUT if you needed some inspiration, there’s this fantasy world generator. You can choose your specs, like what percentage of water do you want, cities or no cities, how many rivers.

And if you need to find (and listen to) music from a certain time period, Radioooo is where you can go. You pick your country and pick your decade, as long as it’s between 1900 and now. You can also pick your mood: slow, fast, or weird. I feel like it works, cause I just picked Australia and 1990 and got AC/DC!!!