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Going to Burnings

Adelaide, it’s that time again. Don’t miss the Spineless Wonders Presents reading at the Wheatsheaf this coming Tuesday 13 August (7pm). Over here you’ll find a 10-minute radio spot where Caroline Reid will tell you all about it and Tamara Lee will reprise her magnificent performance of a hilarious story called Lamingtons from the last SWP, a treat indeed.

One of my stories will be read on Tuesday – a new one. It’s called Going to Burnings and it’s a mildly dystopian riff on the Saturday hardware superstore experience. It’s not available anywhere else yet, so I’m curious to see how it will be received. I’m so thrilled to be a part of this magical night again; it’s a unique pleasure to be read to by some of Adelaide’s finest performers.

Have just returned from an excellent Byron Bay Writers Festival where I held forth about sleep, short stories, and feminism to packed crowds.

Joint destroyers - catherine deveny, jane caro, melissa lucashenko and I #bbwf13

A top festival and a delightful intermediary for me between a happy month of summer in Turkey and the long residual winter in SA. Yep, a month off with no work at all, hence my absence from the blog. I feel like I’ve had my oil changed and my wheels aligned. Holidays are a grand concept, I’m learning. Probably taking actual holidays – not residencies, research projects, or maniac travel missions – is a sign of middle age; I like to think there’s some professional maturity in knowing when to avoid the hell out of your suffocating novel. Anyway, it was wonderful to go away and it’s wonderful to be home. Instead of being amazed by ancient ruins, eggplant mezzes and natural wonders, I’m busy being amazed by the garden and undertaking thrilling domestic adventures such as figuring out which pickles have survived our absence and making death-defying attempts to revive the sourdough starter.

Stories are trickling in for the volume of the Review of Australian Fiction which myself and Ali Cobby Eckermann are co-curating in the last quarter of the year. I’m pleased to see the RAF has survived its move to Tomely and is spreading like the great idea it is – it’s on sale at Waterstones in the UK now, and will soon be available via public library ebook systems in Australia (for those of you who can get them to work). It’s all very good writing, but Volume 8 will be special. I can’t wait to reveal our superb line-up of Indigenous and non-Indigenous writers! But that will have to wait for another post…