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24 May 2009 @ 06:18 pm
Australian Speculative Fiction Carnival, May 2009  
Here at last! All the news that's fit to print. Well, some of it. 'Tis but a sampling, dear readers.

In other words, I've undoubtedly missed some newsworthy items. Feel free to add them in comments if you wish.

So, what's been happening in the world of Aussie spec fic this past month?

People have been writing!

Cat Sparks
Margo Lanagan
Martin Livings (MaNoWaMo)
Tansy Rayner Roberts
Stephanie Campisi
Stephanie Gunn

And editing!
Jonathan Strahan on Eclipse 3.

And as an example that books DO eventually get finished: Glenda Larke delivered her manuscript for Stormlord Rising,
and Karen Miller finished editing the galley-proof of The Prodigal Mage:

Markets and competitions

The Katharine Susannah Prichard Speculative Fiction Award is open for a few more days (closing date: Friday May 29, 2009).

Twelfth Planet Press is now open for submissions to the New Ceres webzine for Issue 3, due September 2009.

Ben Payne announced a new "publication house, in the loosest possible conception of the word, dedicated to producing irregular pdf collections of stories in the bizarro/surrealist/absurdist/bonjovi genres":  Tuber By Moonlight!

Books and publishing

An update on parallel importation of books in Australia.

Amazon blundered in the incident now known as Amazonfail. Read all about it in this excellent summary by Tansy Rayner Roberts.

Kaaron Warren’s new book “Slights” has a very creepy cover!

Scott Westerfeld’s forthcoming novel Leviathan has awesome steampunky covers!

Karen Miller and Karen Traviss’s new Star Wars novel, The Clone Wars: No Prisoners, is out.

The Paul Haines collection, The Last Days Of Kali Yuga, can now be pre-ordered.

In celebration of the 2009 Ditmar Awards, Ticonderoga Publications is offering fans of Sean Williams a special deal. With every copy of Magic Dirt, a free, signed copy of Ditmar-nominated Earth Ascendant. Offer available until the announcement of the awards at Conjecture in Adelaide.

On Writing

Richard Harland launched his Writing Tips website.

Angela Slatter and Ben Payne on whether characters should be likable.

Awritergoesonajourney.com now Twitters.

CallMyAgent.Blogspot.com offered a critique of query letters.

Tansy pointed us to Nalo Hopkinson’s piece on prejudice, invisibility and science fiction. Justine Larbalesier wrote on the same subject.

Glenda Larke with advice for writing your first fantasy novel.

Simon Haynes chimed in with writing tips:

Stephanie Gunn linked to The Guide to Literary Agents and lists The Top 10 reasons agents stop reading.

And this is how writing is REALLY done!


Ditmar nominations happened. A shortlist resulted! Amazing stuff. Voting is now underway.

Tender Morsels was shortlisted for a Locus Award and a Shirley Jackson award. And also is a Tiptree Honor book. Geez, Margo, leave something for everyone else, please! :)

Julia Leigh’s novella “Disquiet” was also nominated for a Shirley Jackson Award.

Reviews and comments thereon

Martin Livings found a nice review of Carnies.

Rob Hood’s Creeping In Reptile Flesh was reviewed in Aurealis.

Grant Watson on artists responding to critics (the artist in this case being Dame Judi Dench).

Dirk Flinthart responded thoughtfully to a review of Canterbury 2100.

Justine Larbalestier on the goodness of bad reviews.

Sean Williams on a review of The Grand Conjunction.


Swancon on the ABC.


... to JG Ballard, who died this month.

Odds and sods

Justine was pressed to learn to Lindy Hop ... and will in fact be learning the dance, as her charity-fundraising challenge was met!

Ben Peek’s novel ‘Black Sheep” was the subject of a German exam question.

Deborah Biancotti on judging books by their covers, including her own forthcoming collection “A Book OF Endings”.

Shaun Tan delivered the 2009 Colin Simpson Lecture for the Australian Society of Authors:

Last, and most important of all, came the news that Paul Haines appears to have beaten cancer.

And on that note, good health to all, and to all a good night!

ex_benpayne119 on May 24th, 2009 09:36 am (UTC)
Excellent job, Mr Barnes. Very comprehensive!
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 24th, 2009 10:05 am (UTC)
catsparxcatsparx on May 24th, 2009 09:41 am (UTC)
Good job, Barnsey. The most comprehensive carnival in ages!
catsparxcatsparx on May 24th, 2009 09:42 am (UTC)
Fuck, I didn't read Payne's post before posting mine, otherwise I would have come up with my own damn interesting word in place of comprehensive!
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 24th, 2009 10:06 am (UTC)
No worries. :)
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 24th, 2009 10:06 am (UTC)
Thanks! One likes to do these things properly, you know.
girlie jonesgirliejones on May 24th, 2009 11:47 am (UTC)
Yay! Good job Chris! Thanks!
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 24th, 2009 12:44 pm (UTC)
Thanks GJ. :)
Nyssanyssa_p on May 24th, 2009 01:05 pm (UTC)
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 24th, 2009 01:52 pm (UTC)
You're welcome.
Eneiteneit on May 24th, 2009 02:00 pm (UTC)
the AHWA round up can be found here: http://taliehelene.livejournal.com/120174.html
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 24th, 2009 02:03 pm (UTC)
Thanks for adding that!
Eneiteneit on May 24th, 2009 03:37 pm (UTC)
you're welcome *g*, Talie does a good job of pulling all the AHWA info together.
Paul Hainespaulhaines on May 25th, 2009 01:41 pm (UTC)
Might be a bit early to say I've beaten cancer! Just one of those really good thoughts that come into my mind now and again. Still got some bloodtesting to get through to see if I am indeed clean or if it has spread... because we're not sure yet.
chrisbarneschrisbarnes on May 25th, 2009 02:15 pm (UTC)
Well, I did say "appears"... I sure hope those remaining tests turn out OK.