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Last week was the launch of The Heart an an Echo Chamber, a chapbook of vignettes that respond to Jodi Cleghorn’s work ironically titled No Need to Reply. THiaEC as we fondly call it is my debut as a cover artist, and I’m now very good at drawing hearts.

The chapbook is limited edition and can be bought here.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

The Heart is an Echo Chamber – Lois Spangler
It Couldn’t Be – Tom Dullemond
Untethering – Adam Byatt
Letting Go – S.G. Larner
Pits – Kristen Erskine
The Princess of Swords – Helen Stubbs
Starless – Ben Payne
Emerging, Closure – Rus VanWestervelt

front-cover

If you head on over to the Dangerous Women Project, you’ll be able to read a reflective essay I wrote about parkour, women, and the gendered nature of public space.

Go visit See & Do to check out the work they’re doing, and for some videos, their channel on Vimeo is well worth checking out.

And a plug for the Brisbane Parkour Association, who run women only workshops for women who may feel a bit intimidated about just turning up to one of the mixed classes. It’s a good way to break the ice.

On Monday I got a notification on Facebook that made me go frantically scrolling through a very long list of names. Ellen Datlow‘s long list of honourable mentions for her Best Horror of the Year was out. And I’d been pinged…

And there it was.

You’ll have to scroll a bit, and that’s only Part 2.

I’m super honoured Ellen liked my story, and considering my lacklustre year of writing, thanks to uni and work and children, it’s a much-needed boost.

The story in question,”Three Trophies”, is a dark fairytale-style short story and can be read here.

A new poetry anthology is out now and it features my poem “Heat, Flies and Cane Toads”, which was originally published in Tincture Journal #7. There are some amazing poems in there all themed around the notion of place.

There is a giveaway on Goodreads you can enter, it closes soon though!

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Click on the cover image above to find links to places to buy, it’s available in ebook and print book. Look, proof of print!

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Print copy is pretty!

There are a few updates I need to do but I’ll start with this one.

18 months ago Jodi Cleghorn pitched an idea for several writers to “reply” to her collection of vignettes, titled No Need to Reply. I put my hand up to write a response. The project stalled for quite some time, partly because Jodi had asked me to do the cover art, and I got completely overwhelmed with university work and just couldn’t do it. When I tried to create some art to what she had in mind it really didn’t work that well… so I asked if I could try doing it a bit differently.

Jodi let me have free rein creatively and I painted a map of the heart. She loved it, thankfully, and having a cover kicked things back into gear. I’m so happy she was patient enough to wait, and I’m super excited to have a cover art credit, finally!

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Here be heartache…

The chapbook is scheduled for release at the end of May. You can still read the original chapbook, No Need to Reply. I’ll post more details when The Heart is an Echo Chamber is released.

Contact 2016

I was hoping I’d be able to get back into study mode easily after the long weekend but seems not. So I shall write out my impressions of the weekend first and hopefully that will help me re-assimilate into everyday life.

Contact! I suck, because I barely took any photos. I think my anxiety got in the way there, and I also know I’m not in too many photos either. So sorry for the text-heavy post.

The main thing I got out of Contact is that I still love to write and I miss having the time-space to write and be writerly and all. I still have lots to say about writing (I really should have been on some panels, oops) and lots to learn. And I still have lots of stories to tell. This weekend has shown me that sacrificing my artistic pursuits so I can do well at uni is not really the answer to my crammed schedule. I don’t want to finish uni and be so out of the habit of writing and making art that I let go of it completely. So I need to find some way to fit it in, even though my brain melts down by the end of semester.

The other thing I learned is that I need to just go up and introduce myself to people more. There are so many people that I should have met by now, that I just hadn’t because I was afraid to put myself forward. I had some absolutely lovely, funny, fantastic and thoughtful conversations with people I wanted to meet and did, and people I wasn’t expecting to meet and did. I know I can’t just turn myself into an extravert but I can fake it pretty well and also writers are really good at knowing that people get peopled out so it was ok to say “yeah running out of social steam” because I wasn’t the only one!

There were things I thought would happen that didn’t, and things I didn’t expect that happened. It was a little hard having so many friends on the committee and volunteering, because I missed hanging out with them, but the benefit was it forced me to get out of my comfort zone and socialise with people I didn’t know as well.

My favourite panels were the Australian Gothic panel, Cosplay, and Access All Channels. Every panel I went to was entertaining and/or informative, those ones just stood out for me for different reasons. Dressing up for the banquet after the cosplay panel was excellent fun😉. I do wish more people had dressed up though!

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Attentive plant-human hybrid

 

I got some excellent loot from the trader’s room and have some new places to check out for birthday gifts now.

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Twas a fabulous long weekend.

This is what I came home to.

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Silly selfies

The end.

Audio poem: “White Pill”

Usually when I compose an audio poem I use the poem itself as the backbone and layer the musical sounds to support it. With this poem I wanted to layer sounds with my voice, and use a melodic line on the flute as a counterpoint to the poem. A little experimental and a very different sound to my other poems. I decided to use “Ave Maria” by Franz Schubert as the melody, because it’s recognisable and evokes a certain mood.

With thanks again to Lloyd for production work.

Words by me, flute performance by me, score by Franz Schubert.

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