The merry month of May

Dancing round the May-Pole

O, the month of May, the merry month of May, So frolic, so gay, and so green, so green, so green! ‘The Merry Month of May’ by Thomas Dekker (1599) The month just past (So frolic. Much gay. Many green. Wow.) would’ve warranted a celebratory skip around the maypole, if it hadn’t been a bit chilly … Read more…

Purple Prose book launch and reading

Perth Writers Festival at PIAF

Purple Prose is launching at 2016 Perth Writers Festival (PWF), part of Perth International Arts Festival (PIAF), and I’m one of the contributors to the collection who’ll be reading at the launch.   Purple Prose book launch What do pigeon fanciers, Dockers fans and King George all have in common? In Purple Prose, Liz Byrski and Rachel Robertson introduce 15 new works by Australian … Read more…

The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt published in the UK

The Life + Loves of Lena Gaunt (Aardvark Bureau 2016)

Though it’s been creeping into shops (online and bricks-and-mortar) for the past few weeks, and already gaining some glowing early online reviews, today – 9 January 2016 – marks the official UK publication date for The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt (Aardvark Bureau). To celebrate, this is my virtual group hug to all involved, including but not … Read more…

The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt

The Life + Loves of Lena Gaunt (Aardvark Bureau 2016)

It’s glorious, the water in the morning, when it’s calm like this, when you can just bob on the surface, like a seal, watching. How well it makes me feel, how calm; how light and how heavy at the same time: like heroin – a little bit like heroin. Octogenarian musician Lena Gaunt lives quietly … Read more…

Liz Byrski: In Love and War, and Lena

In Love and War: Nursing Heroes

Liz Byrski was interviewed recently on WritingWA‘s Cover to Cover, about her most recent book, In Love and War: Nursing Heroes. Cover to Cover host Meri Fatin described the process of writing In Love and War as “as almost like a piece of plastic surgery in itself”. In this short excerpt from the 40-minute interview, Liz talks about what she learned from … Read more…

Debut novel picked up by new UK imprint

Aardvark Bureau

The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt caught the ear and eye of UK publisher Scott Pack in November 2014, and he rated it #2 in his top ten reads of 2014, calling it: An incredible debut and a novel so believable that I wish it were true. In March 2015, Scott launched Aardvark Bureau, … Read more…

The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt shortlisted for 2014 WA Premier’s Book Awards

I’m just delighted that The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt is shortlisted in the Fiction category of the Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards. Here’s the shortlist for the Fiction category: All the Birds, Singing – Evie Wyld (Random House Australia) Coal Creek – Alex Miller (Allen & Unwin) Elemental – Amanda Curtin (UWA Publishing) Eyrie – Tim Winton (Penguin Group Australia) … Read more…

Perth Writers Festival 2014

Finally, the news I’ve been itching to share: I’m thrilled to be part of the Perth Writers Festival program for 2014, launched this week. The festival runs from 20–23 February, with most of the events held at the very beautiful campus of University of Western Australia, where I studied and worked, many years ago. The lineup … Read more…

Underrated and overlooked?

Posting on the excellent Killings blog on the Kill Your Darlings journal website last week, S.A. Jones mused on why great Australian books are being overlooked. Writing in the wake of The Small Press Network’s Most Underrated Book Awards of 2013, Jones considered what it means to be ‘underrated’. She quoted MUBA 2013 nominee Ginger … Read more…