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Between borders

After flight cancellations, two months in limbo, and a desperate rush to get home by the only means available, I find myself at the Centre for National Resilience in Howard Springs – not home, but somewhere closer to it. I have joked that we are like packages held up in customs, being contained, inspected, and tested. Actually, it feels something like a detention centre, though the conditions here are certainly better than Australia’s immigration detention facilities. I have been reading Anwen Crawford’s extraordinary book No Document, which has been hauntologically fitting in here – I highly recommend reading it, wherever you happen to be.

In other news, some excellent reviews of The Airways have been appearing – most recently, this amazing review from Amy Baillieu in the Australian Review of Books, which selected The Airways as its “Book of the Week”, and a fantastic half-page review from Diane Stubbings in The Australian. Both these publications are paywalled. I can’t find a link to the Australian’s review online, but I have added some choice quotes from these reviews to the book’s page.

I also did a little Q+A with ABR for their Open Page section, which you can read here.

Heading back to Adelaide by way of the Stuart Highway once we are released from this place on Tuesday. I’ll write about the experience elsewhere, but here are a few images to give you an idea of what it’s like in here. It is a close approximation of the place to which I had the residents of Clapstone relocated by the fictional “Department of Sustainable Communities” at the end of Dyschronia. Surreal, dystopian, and eerily familiar…

The Airways – Online launch

The permanent link for the online launch of The Airways is up at Youtube. Thanks to everyone who came to the livestream! It was great to see all your comments.

Want to hear more about the book? You can catch me at Northern Books on Sunday, listen to an interview with The Book Show on Radio National, or read this interview about gender and haunting in The Guardian.

Author raising a glass of prosecco from behind the computer after the livestream. Paper bunting In the background reads: Brava

The Airways is out now!

The time has come – The Airways is out in the world, with some great reviews appearing already in Artshub and The Monthly [$]. I have added some choice quotes to the book’s page. By now you should be able to find a copy at your local indie bookshop; if not, you can definitely order one online.

It feels pretty strange not to be able to go into a bookshop myself and see it on the shelf. But I am still celebrating the book’s arrival from here. As I mentioned in my last post, the launch will go ahead online on the 12th August – I hope that you can join me for that. I also have an upcoming Q&A at Northern Books on the 15th August, which I’m really looking forward to!

I wrote a short oped for The Guardian last week about being stranded, and what it’s like to see Australia’s border control pandemic response from the outside. It’s frustrating to be stuck here, but I know that others have it much worse, and I can adapt – two decades of life as a working writer have made me pretty resilient to hostile governments. The unfairness of it stings, though. I’m realising anew that Australia has one rule for the rich, and another for the rest of us. How did we get here?

We have so much work to do.

The Airways launch – an update

Due to the halving of arrivals allowed into Australia, our flights were suddenly cancelled a week before takeoff. Sadly I won’t be able to make it home to Adelaide in time to launch The Airways in person.

However, the livestream will still go ahead via YouTube on August 12! I hope that you can join me. All the details are here.

Meanwhile, a new short story of mine appeared in this week’s Saturday Paper. It’s called Pigeon.

Read the rest at The Saturday Paper [$]