The annual Ditmar Awards shortlists were announced a few days ago, and we’re absolutely over the moon to have several works feature in various categories, alongside lots of other excellent Australian stuff! To celebrate, we’re offering up some free fiction, including our two shortlisted short stories, samples of Faith Mudge’s wonderful work, and an extract from Tansy Rayner Roberts’ Ink Black Magic. We’ve also linked to Kathleen Jennings’ Illustration Friday posts, as one of her pieces was on the cover of Focus 2012 (and we think she’s awesome…). Click on the highlighted links below to download the samples!
“A Puppet’s Parody of Joy: Dolls, Puppets and Mannikins as Diabolical Other”, Leigh Blackmore, in Ramsey Campbell: Critical Essays on the Master of Modern Horror edited by Gary William Crawford (Scarecrow Press)
“That was then, this is now: how my perceptions have changed”, George Ivanoff, in Doctor Who and Race edited by Lindy Orthia (Intellect Books)
Voting is now open for the Awards, for anyone who is a member of the 2013 Natcon (Conflux) or this year’s Natcon (Continuum X). Thank you so much to everyone who nominated our work!
We’re almost ready to go to print on Guardian, Jo Anderton’s new novel, and we just got the final cover art through last night! I know Jo couldn’t wait to share it (she seems to like it…) and I’ve finally had a chance to pop it here as well!
Don’t forget, you can still pre-order Guardian for a special price and receive exclusive bonus Veiled Worlds content — more details here.
Making books is a very interesting process, and one of those things that can be tricksy are book titles. A couple of years ago we had a working title of Apocalypse Hope for one of our anthologies, but it later became (the much more aptly named) Epilogue, thanks to a Twitter suggestion. Changing a title can be a big decision, especially if promotion for the book has already begun, but, after much deliberation, Jo Anderton and I have decided to change the title of the forthcoming Veiled Worlds novel from Unbound to Guardian! We agreed that the title of Unbound (in addition to being very popular right now!), didn’t really represent the story as well as Guardian. I’m hoping Jo might blog about the way stories change focus over time at some point, so you can find out more about that…
So, Jo’s novel, due out in June, is now titled Guardian, and it is FANTASTIC! We’re just putting to final touches on the layout, and have sent out the first Advance Review Copies. You can still pre-order at the special introductory price for ebook and print copies, and get the bonus ebook, for at least the next few weeks!
*NEW* Story: A Varsnian Name
Story: A Memory Trapped in Light
Intervention and group interview with reader questions
The Movoc Under Keeper Tourism Brochure
So if you need a fix of the Veiled Worlds while you eagerly await Guardian, or just love Jo’s work as much as we do, order now!
PRE-ORDER Guardian by Jo Anderton, with exclusive bonus ebook! (ended 5/6/14)
It’s a lovely long weekend, so for a very limited time we have two free ebooks on Amazon! Until Monday only, you can grab great stories by Dirk Flinthart and Margo Lanagan, instantly available on your ereader!
“Sanction” by Dirk Flinthart – continuing on from the events of the Aurealis Award-shortlisted Path of Night (though standing alone!), this brand new story follows former detective Jen Morris on a mission that will see her question everything she knows, and she’s dragging a very much changed Michael Devlin along for the ride. Will what she has to do take too much toll?
“Flower and Weed” by Margo Lanagan – a short story glimpse into the vividly imagined world of Margo Lanagan’s powerful, multi-award-winning novel Sea Hearts (also published as The Brides of Rollrock Island). Selkies are in the background, but this is a story of a liaison between a selkie’s earthly husband and one of the witches who does the magic that’s essential to keeping the selkie-wife trade going.
If that’s not enough, you can still pre-order Jo Anderton’s new Veiled Worlds novel right now and receive an exclusive bonus content ebook, containing both original and previously published stories in the Veiled Worlds. Don’t miss out!
My apologies for the radio silence around these parts since the end of March. It’s been a crazy few weeks, and I haven’t even had a chance to properly celebrate the end of the Cranky Ladies of History campaign (which I will do soon!). A couple of very quick updates:
1. Insert Title Here slush reading is over halfway done, but we’ve had a few delays due to other things getting in the way. Hope to have first round reading finished in the next two weeks. I’m very sorry for those still waiting to hear back from us.
2. Cranky Ladies surveys and early rewards will go out very soon — just need a chance to sit down with the Pozible site and get it sorted! (And again, THANK YOU to our supporters and signal-boosters — I don’t think I can say that enough!).
3. Aurealis Awards! They happened last weekend, and we WON! One Small Step and The Bone Chime Song both received awards, alongside a bunch of other fantastic work. A proper update about that (with photos), also pending.
Thanks for your patience everyone — I’ve had a five day judging conference for the Children’s Book Council of Australia and end of term (day job) kicking my butt, alongside preparation for an interstate move, but hope to be back on the publishing train really soon!
I don’t usually review books here on the FableCroft site, but like to periodically do so when it’s a book by one of the authors we have published in the past.
I first encountered Peacemaker protagonist Virgin Jackson in de Pierres’ story “Gin Jackson: Neophyte Ranger” (first published in the Agog! Smashing Stories anthology in 2004, and I liked it so much I reprinted in FableCroft’s Australis Imaginarium in 2010). I was delighted to read Peacemaker in graphic version in 2011, and was a bit sad when that format was unable to continue, so it was with huge anticipation I started on the novel version! And I have not been disappointed.
Virgin Jackson is a senior ranger in a themed conservation park; odd things have started to happen to her, and not just finding herself saddled with a US Marshall who is himself just a little strange. When she first finds a dead body where it’s almost impossible for anyone to be, she is essentially accused of the murder, and then is attacked in her home. Not one to stand idly by and let things happen, Virgin starts to investigate for herself, with the help of friends in useful places, and the odd Marshall Sixkiller. What she finds is not at all what she expects…
There are several changes that have occurred from the original short story to the novel-length edition. Focus is by necessity shifted for the longer form, and while the book is still (in my eyes) very Australian, I can also see where some elements have been altered to give the story a more international tone, and that both works very well on a plot level as well as being a sensible move in terms of audience.
In another incarnation, de Pierres writes crime fiction, and her experience in both a science fictional setting and a mystery one offer a deftness of touch here. Peacemaker rollicks along at a cracking pace, and I found myself holding my breath in anticipation at times, which is always a good sign! The character of Virgin is vivid and wonderfully acerbic, and I found both she and the supporting cast so well realised they really bounced off the page. With that combination, I got to the end of the book and flipped the last page in disappointment, because while the story ended well (albeit definitely set up for the next volume), I simply didn’t want it to stop. Bring on the next instalment!
Thank you to the publisher for my review copy of the book. It is available in ebook from your favourite e-tailer or ask your bookstore about the paperback.