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Willow

Several exciting things have happened about the offices (I mean house) this week.

First up, Kaaron Warren became the first Aussie ever to win a Shirley Jackson Award. This weekend she won for Best Novella with “Sky” from her collection Through Splintered Walls. The Shirley Jackson Awards recognize work that is innovative, disturbing and excellent. And I’ve long aspired for the work we publish at Twelfth Planet Press to be considered of this calibre.

“Sky” also won the Ditmar Award, the Australian Shadows Award and the Aurealis Award, becoming the first story to win all three. It’s such an astounding effort and I’m so proud that I had the opportunity to work with Kaaron on this collection.

Yesterday, we released this fabulously, deliciously inviting, scrumptious book trailer for A Trifle Dead which was made for us by Film students at Curtin University as part of their term work. It was a lot of fun seeing this come together and hearing about the progress and I think they really nailed the book in their interpretation. (We’re doing the ebook for $5.95 this week only to celebrate the release).

 


And finally, this week, all three of us at Galactic Suburbia got Mind Melded over at SF Signal on our favourite genre road trips of all time. I chose Star Trek Voyager cause I just started an entire series rewatch and I still love everything about a TV show with a female captain :)

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Through Splintered Walls Art Exhibition

Willow

photo(35) Yesterday, I attended the opening for the Through Splintered Walls Art Exhibition at the new Rockingham Art Centre.

Background: Last year, around this time, we launched the sixth volume of the Twelve Planets series – Through Splintered Walls by Kaaron Warren – at Natcon in Melbourne. We had a great launch and sold a bunch of copies and then later in the con, we discovered that there had been a printing error – the top line of every page was missing. After manic searching to check this error didn’t happen at our end, we promised everyone we would replace their copies and then we set about thinking what we could do.

It was such a let down and disappointment. You work so hard to get a book to print and then you proudly release to the world and anxiously anticipate how it will be received. And you hope it will fly. So when it dives and crashes and burns … well it’s a devastating feeling. And one I hope to never experience again. Whilst we stood around feeling sorry for ourselves, Narrelle Harris suggested that we think about turning the spoiled books into artworks – to find a way to get artists involved to use the books for art instead of pulping them. As an environmentalist, I was totally broken hearted about the idea of the waste of all that paper. So the idea sounded perfect. Plus, we had a chance to tank a mistake and turn it into something better.

TSW_1 The three of us worked on some ideas and a pitch and then I took this to Lee Battersby who works at the City of Rockingham (the city I and TPP are now based) as the Cultural Development and Arts Coordinator. His immediate response was “we can do that!” and when I turned around, he’d organised the whole thing. He organised four artists to give four different workshops for anyone who wanted to come along and learn about paper art techniques. And then he organised for the participants to submit their finished works (made from three copies of Through Splintered Walls each, the ruined copies which I donated to the city) for a final art exhibition.

And yesterday, we attended the opening for the exhibition. Here is the Mayor of the city opening the exhibit. It turns out, this is the very first exhibition to be held in the long awaited Rockingham Arts Centre!

Kaaron was brought over for the event and to give a writing workshop whilst she was here.

Here she is giving a few remarks and raving about how awesome the finished artworks are.

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I wandered around and took photos of most of the pieces. Here’s a gallery of them – every one used to be a copy of Through Splintered Walls!
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This one, the artist came and gave me the story to the piece. It’s not quite as she intended. You see, her new puppy accidentally chewed up that copy of the book and so she had to change her plans! I love this piece, I think it’s really great!

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And these are works that one of the workshop tutors made as examples:
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It’s quite an unsettling feeling to be pleased to see copies of your book shredded, cut up and folded. I’m so happy with the way this project turned out!

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Assets and Liabilies, I haz them

Willow

Longterm readers of my blog(s) will recall (perhaps with fondness, or the kindly shake of the head whilst they skip about in the daffodils ’cause they did their tax already) my ongoing Accounting Saga. There tends to be a flare up about yearly, ahead of the tax season, as I grapple with yet more spreadsheets that don’t balance, or some new forensic audit for a new system that will definitely absolutely once and for all sort out my financial recording woes.

It’s that tiiiime!!!!

Now with added bonus New Drama!

Let’s see. I should catch you up first. See. I want to be able to apply for Arts Grants. I *should* be applying for Arts Grants. Arts Grants are the holy grail. With an arts grant, I could pay those who work for TPP the real actual monies they are worth. I could pay full pro rates for writers. I could have an actual marketing budget (imagine not having to bake a zillion cupcakes the night before a book launch. Oh my!). More importantly, with an arts grant I could afford to do the things I believe we need to do for the Next Step (TM). Which is: Grow.

Applying for arts grants as a publisher seems to be a little bit more tricky. Firstly, you have to be an incorporated body. So last year, we incorporated. I think that cost about $500 in fees but I’d have to check that. That’s when TPP became a Pty Ltd entity and I got shares in the company and became a director. Then, you have to register with the Australian Arts Council Literature Board in order to be eligible to apply for their grants. This basically requires you to show that you are a legitimate entity, have a track record of publishing quality material and have established distribution streams and so on. And then, to present a balance sheet ie … and here it comes .. have freshly audited books.

Oy vey.

See, ’cause. And I want to just say up front, I’m really busy. I got married last year. I switched jobs *twice*. I published 4 books. I travelled twice overseas. I did *stuff*.

But um. Yes. Of all the things I did, the one thing I did not finish doing was move all my accounting spreadsheets into Quickbooks, which was the free software that came with my incorporating paperwork. I really liked the invoicing ability inside this program and I got that up and running. And it worked ok for some things. But, it turns out that a) forensic auditing of 6 years of records of various levels of perfectionism in their keeping takes *a really long time* and b) the software is not really set up for publishing where you also want to keep track of inventory and the per unit cost make up (it really wasn’t flexible in the per unit cost accumulating over time – like, say, I pay an author the first instalment of an advance 6 months or a year ahead of publishing, and I also take preorders for the book but later on there will be additions to the cost like the rest of the advance, the design fee, the artwork fee and the printing costs and maybe launch costs and various marketing costs). And I also wanted to be able to track projects and their bottom lines versus the entire press’ bottom line (to look at breakeven points for each project vs for the whole press). It’s not really set up for that.

And somewhere along the line I got too busy or distracted to keep up with even the front end of entering records into Quickbooks. And it got to be a big huge mess. Again. WHY DO I ALWAYS END UP HERE?

So you’ll appreciate the hyperventilating, chest thumping and loud sobbing that accompanied the having to get audited aspect of this whole gig.

I believe a text message to my brother-in-law with the question “so is 11 days a reasonable amount of time to get audited in?” kicked this off. He is very lovely and has come to our house twice this week to sit down and look at my numbers and go through my spreadsheets with me. He has approached the Mess with calm and logic, which has been reassuring. He seems convinced that this all could be Sorted out and rational and tidy. (I live in hope. I cling to it sometimes during the nightsweats) And the first step of all this was to pull together numbers for the balance sheet needed for Literature Board Registration.

My exciting news today was all that blood and sweat and tears was worth something!! I lodged all the forms and requirements last night at 11pm and this morning I got word that Twelfth Planet Press was successfully registered! Hurrah! I can’t even explain how uplifted and excited I’ve been all day. I’ve had *ideas* spilling out my ears. I feel completely reinvigorated and reenergised!

Of course, all this is overshadowed by the more painful exercise to come in actually bringing the whole books up to date and neat and tidy. And thus has a whole bunch of complicating factors now – firstly, actually finding an accounting software package that works and/or admitting that I will never fully separate from my spreadsheets and may have to run a software package and my spreadsheets simultaneously to get all the information I want. I really really like to know which projects have broken even, which might break even and which never will. And there’s all kinds of interesting data that you can look at to do with estimating print runs, advances, actions leading to sales correlations, which times of the year books sell better etc etc.

And um … now TPP is a company and that changes things. I’d always operated on the premise that the money I invested in the press I would get paid … at some point in the future … should there ever be funds. But as of March 2012, when we incorporated, there are all kinds of tax implications and you can’t just “take money out” from a company to a person willy nilly. Now I have to look at structure, shares and loans, liabilities and debts and all kinds of things like auditing, annual reports and tax and so on and so on. And a way to somehow be able to get back the money I’ve been investing in this project, at some point, should there ever be money to be got. The pipe dream, eh?

And if we’ve learned nothing else, we’ve learned it’s that the one most important thing in any enterprise is to get the foundation sorted before you run off into the distance. Oh hindsight. You’re so cute.

You know what this all boils down to, don’t you?

Yep. You guessed it.

ANOTHER FORENSIC AUDIT.

Hold me.

But it’s not all bad. I’ve been having to calculate royalties to figure out liabilities – and hopefully next week I will be paying some. This is the first year my authors have earned out their advances. More than one author. More than one book. That’s really exciting. You take your milestones where you can find em.

And the other thing of course – how lucky am I to have such a lovely brother-in-law!

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Through Splintered Walls Art Projects

Willow

Paper Art Image

I’m getting so excited about these! The first Paper art workshop is this Saturday. The second one was just announced and if you’re in Perth and are interested, I recommend signing up straight away as the first one filled up overnight.

Paper Art Workshop

A passionate collector of found objects, Pam Langdon is inspired by the marine environment and patterns within nature. Her art practice resembles a beach combing expedition encountering strange, sometimes unidentifiable objects which have been washed ashore. Pam’s unique artist’s books are transformed and recontextualized from a discarded unloved existence, giving renewed life. Inspired by the stories and pages within each book the intricate cutting, folding and rolling of their pages forms spirals, symbolising movement and energy and reflecting growth patterns found in nature. The labyrinth of folds and curls entices the reader for closer inspection of their mysterious new life.

Pam will display and demonstrate 2 different forms of books, incorporating origami paper folding and paper cutting techniques. Each participant will also receive copies of Through Splintered Walls to enable them to begin work on their artwork for the combined community exhibition in May.

Due to materials, places are limited. To register, please contact Lee Battersby, Coordinator Cultural Development and Arts, on 08 9528 0386 or email lee.battersby@rockingham.wa.gov.au.

Date: 16 February 2013
Location: Gary Holland Community Centre
Time: 1pm – 3pm

 

Through Splintered Walls by Kaaron Warren (Book 6 in the Twelve Planets series) is available as a paperbook and ebook.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


It’s Wednesday already?

Willow

It’s hard to get everything done in a day and I’m really starting to try to be ok with just getting one thing done on top of working the day job, cooking dinner, completing the day’s workout and whatever other small chores I need to get done in the day. Today I answered a few emails and I finished off the knitting for my niece’s baby surprise jacket. I just have to sew on the buttons and sew the seams which I’ll do tomorrow during Galactic Suburbia. So she’s all good to go ahead and be born now.

I *would* be going to Konga class tomorrow which has a new term starting but I can’t find any pants at all or by sneakers. See first sentence above.

Anyway, I wanted to post some photos from the speech the other night and maybe a few paragraphs of the speech. It’s kind of weird to talk about yourself and your achievements for 15 minutes. But sitting down to write a narrative about my publishing did help me nut out a few thoughts that I felt expressed a few things about Twelfth Planet Press.

This is me receiving the award.

And you know you’re in the right family when, during your speech, your uncle feels a need to document The Shoes getting an outing. And might I say, those shoes were very popular with the crowd. I picked the right fashion era :)

 

 

 

Some excerpts from the speech I gave:

I think what I appreciate most about this genre is the opportunity to interrogate the present through imagining an alternate reality. By placing people in extreme or alien scenarios, we can explore what it means to be human, what are our strengths and our weaknesses, who we are when it really counts. And in the best examples of this kind of fiction, advocate for change – in the way we think, what we value or the way we behave. For me, the true power of art comes from holding a mirror up to life to argue, suggest or demand that we, humanity, do better.

 

This desire to have women’s voices heard in the science fiction world powers my commitment and dedication to these ideals,

 

In this context my publishing company has grown and evolved. I’m driven by several objectives – the first and foremost is to publish fresh, original, well written work that seeks to interrogate, commentate, inspire or provoke thought. The second is to advocate for fiction written for, by or about women. To raise the awareness of women’s voices in science fiction and fantasy. And finally, to showcase and demonstrate the depth and breadth of Australian fiction and voice to the broader science fiction and fantasy scene.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Twelfth Planet Day

Willow

Today was such a big day for TPP! On the east coast, lots of TPP crew gathered at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival for the Twelfth Planet Press Showcase. I followed the event on Twitter and discovered it’s a lot harder to throw a party long distance than I thought it would be – I desperately wanted to be there and was so hungry for every photo and tweet – and text! – I got as the event progressed. I have such a big thank you to Jason Nahrung who first brought the idea to me and then worked really hard on the ground in Melbourne to make it happen and without his tireless organising, liaising, schlepping and programming, it would not have been possible. He even fixed that unfortunate TNT error from Natcon by collecting the books and passing them on to Dymocks who are the official bookstore of MWF:

(Thanks Deb for this lovely shot of the TPP books on the shelf!)

Also a big thanks to the authors who could make it to the event, some flying in from outer state – Deb, Kaaron, Cat, Rosaleen, Narrelle, Lucy, Kirstyn and Jason. (Hope I didn’t forget anyone?) And also to Julian Warner who MC’ed, Kerry Greenwood who spoke for the 12 Planets and Talie Helene who provided music. And to everyone everywhere who attended the event. I hear it was packed and I must admit I had fretted the “what if noone comes” a bit, so it was so exciting and overwhelming to hear that all the seats were taken and the standing room.

Whilst this was going on, I was at home preparing for a speech this evening. I was doing that thing where I couldn’t focus on anything else cause I had this thing to do, even though it was still hours away. Luckily, the universe has a way of filling a vacuum. I’m not *saying* it was the puppy’s fault and I know this sounds a bit conspiracy theorist but, he *was* the first to know, and sure, he spent a good 7 to 10 minutes trying to tell me about it before giving up, but he does seem like the other one to have profited from my dishwasher flooding the house. Yes. Water. Everywhere and not at all in an ironic way. About half an inch deep in the kitchen, dining, and half way in the tv and sitting area – under carpets and couches. And … and now you see it, right? but I had to move couches to mop up all the water and check for electricals and this, you see, exposed what was behind the couch – TWO uneaten treats, long forgotten…. or so i thought …

Anyway, that gave me something to do before heading up to Perth for the National Council of Jewish Women Australia WA evening for Women’s Achievers. Where in exchange for speaking for 15 minutes about myself and TPP, I won an award for being a Woman Achiever. It was a truly great honour to be recognised by this group and the other two award winners for 2012 (its a biennial award) were absolutely inspirational – Commander Michelle Fyfe APM (the 2012 Australian Police Medal recipient, did you know that in 1984, women police officers could only wear the uniform pants after sundown and part of their uniform included a handbag because they had no holster with that dress?) and Susan Cromb (Chairperson of the Adopt-A-School Partnership Bali-WA).

The evening also included a speech from the President of NCJWA in which she spoke a lot about the programs the organisation runs. A lot of really good work, and projects I really admire. And I was so chuffed by how many people came over to tell me how much they enjoyed my speech. It was really hard to write 15 mins worth about myself and I wasn’t sure the audience would care about science fiction :) I’m so glad my doubts were unfounded.

The evening was a fundraiser and my uncles and aunt, parents, family friend and Kathryn came to make up my table. I had a day where my heart overflowed because of all the love in it. Such a really great day. Thanks to everyone!

 

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Upcoming Events!

Willow

August 26 is going to come round faster than I think it will and I have two very important events in my calendar for that day.

Here in Perth, I am scheduled to speak as part of the Women Achievers night for the National Council of Jewish Women of Australia fundraising event. I’m so blown away to have been asked that I have no idea what I will talk about. For 15 minutes. I need to start working on that speech.

In Melbourne, Twelfth Planet Press is scheduled to have a showcase at the Melbourne Writers Festival. We are hosting a free event with food and drinks at the Yarra Building, Federation Square at 5.30 pm. More information can be found on the Melbourne Writers Festival programme. Jason Nahrung has been working incredibly hard on the ground in Melbourne to make this work. And Deborah Biancotti and Kaaron Warren are flying in for the event. Also part of the event are the Melbourne Twelve Planets – Lucy Sussex, Narrelle M Harris, Deb Kalin, Rosaleen Love and Kirstyn McDermott – and Jason Nahrung. What a fantastic lineup! To top that, we have Kerry Greenwood to help launch the event and especially the newly released Cracklescape by Margo Lanagan. I wish I could be there! It’s going to be heaps of fun.

Things are incredibly busy at the moment. Just having to learn to run faster to keep up with it all!

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


A Trifle Competition for A Trifle Dead

Willow

We’re having a competition to find the best trifle recipe for inclusion in our forthcoming crime novel A Trifle Dead.

A Trifle Competition

The search is on for the best trifle recipe!

In anticipation of A Trifle Dead, the debut novel from new crime imprint Deadlines, we seek delicious, inspiring trifle recipes to publish in the book.

We are looking for recipes that match any or all of the following themes: Shot Glass Trifle, Death by Trifle, and Tasmanian Trifle.

Up to 3 winning recipe/s will appear in the novel, with all credit and attribution to the creator/s.

The winner(s) will receive an early contributor copy of A Trifle Dead, a stack of postcards featuring your winning recipe, and your choice of 2 Twelfth Planet Press books (either backlist or forthcoming titles).

Submit your recipe to contact@twelfthplanetpress.com with subject line A TRIFLE DEAD RECIPE and including a photo of your finished masterpiece by August 8, 2012.

Please provide contact details, preferred attribution, and a mailing address.

 

A Trifle Dead

Tabitha Darling has always had a dab hand for pastry and a knack for getting into trouble. Which was fine when she was a tearaway teen, but not so useful now she’s trying to run a hipster urban cafe, invent the perfect trendy dessert, and stop feeding the many (oh so unfashionable) policemen in her life.

When a dead muso is found in the flat upstairs, Tabitha does her best (honestly) not to interfere with the investigation, despite the cute Scottish blogger who keeps angling for her help. Her superpower is gossip, not solving murder mysteries, and those are totally not the same thing, right?

But as that strange death turns into a string of random crimes across the city of Hobart, Tabitha can’t shake the unsettling feeling that maybe, for once, it really is ALL ABOUT HER.

And maybe she’s figured out the deadly truth a trifle late…

About Livia Day:

Livia Day fell in love with crime fiction at an early age.  Her first heroes were Miss Jane Marple and Mrs Emma Peel, and not a lot has changed since then!

She has lived in Hobart, Tasmania for most of her life, and now spends far too much time planning which picturesque tourist spot will get the next fictional corpse.  You can find her online at tabithadarlingsbedroomfloor.tumblr.com

 

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Nightsiders – Honourable Mention

Willow

The Norma Hemming was awarded on Sunday night to Anita Bell and Sara Douglass. I was really thrilled to hear that Sue Isle’s Nightsiders was awarded an honourable mention. The press release mentions Nightsiders:

The judges awarded Honourable Mentions to Sue Isle for Nightsiders, Meg Mundell for Black Glass and Tansy Rayner Roberts for The Shattered City. Selected comments from the judges are:

Nightsiders by Sue Isle, published by Twelfth Planet Press:
Just as the Western Australian landscape is the site of discord, of discovery, of dissociation, so too is the body, in Sue Isle’s journeys into and out of self.

 

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Con Report 2: Twelfth Planet Press Hour

Willow

With three new books to launch at Natcon, and with a new and exciting announcement for our 20th title, we wanted to make a bit of a splash. We were able to secure a really great timeslot at the beginning of the con and we wanted to throw a party to celebrate Twelfth Planet Press.

Terri came up with the awesome idea of making cupcakes, decorated for each of the TPP books, especially the Twelve Planets. She spent a week baking and freezing cupcakes beforehand and lugged 10kg of cakes in her suitcase to the con. Not only did she decorate the cupcake to suit the book, but she matched the the cake flavour to the book as well! They all sounded delicious and she’s going to do more on that at a later date, stay tuned. 

Meanwhile, we arrived on Thursday night and unpacked. Terri was up first thing on Friday morning to go out for supplies and after I had breakfast, I did a second run for her for all the other bits and pieces. Terri spent the entire day in our room icing cupcakes. She turned our room into what I thought looked like an edible art studio and the air was thick with sugar. The sugary smell hung around all weekend too.

I like this photo here with all Terri’s cake decorating paraphernalia – it looks so much like art paints and scrapers and things.

Terri baked something like 400 cupcakes. And whilst they didn’t all quite make it over, that was really quite an achievement in itself. Having done it myself for previous book launches I know how long it takes and how sore your feet get. I’m very sorry too that I didn’t get to taste the salted caramel cupcakes for Margo’s Cracklescape inspired ones. Or the blue ones for Deb’s Bad Power – the cake and the icing were blue!

And there was the decorating. Terri sat down and planned the topping for each of the books inspired by Amanda’s covers. In some cases she bought new moulds to make chocolates to place on top, for others she made things out of icing and chocolate. We didn’t get the time in the end to photograph each of the finished works nor place them next to the matching book as we had wanted.

These are the lemon meringues for Sue’s Nightsiders. Terri made the meringue on the day AND yes that’s a kitchen blowtorch she’s got there thanks to Alex, who Jason and I went and picked up via taxi in the early afternoon.

And for Margo’s Cracklescape, Terri made mirrors – hard boiled lollies melted into hand held mirrors she’s crafted out of icing.

Her creativity is just astounding.

It was not long into the morning that I realised Terri’s efforts were a very real and very beautiful edible art project. There will be more on this project to come, she plans to reenact and take close up photos for her blog. And at TPP, we’re already planning something to celebrate the Twelve Planets project as a whole so we’ll have more to say on that in due course.

More on the party itself next (this photo to the left is courtesy of Cat Sparks) But I was thrown into what felt like the most overwhelming couple of hours of generosity and support that I think I have ever experienced. I was already blown away by the work and care Terri had taken with the cupcakes. But then we needed people and hands on deck to run what became a much bigger than we had expected event.

Tansy and Jason snuck into the back of the panel before ours on the programme to set up the drinks and book display. They even snuck in a table! TPP peeps and friends came up to help bring down all the platters of cupcakes – there were a lot – and as we entered the room to arrange it all in an artistic way, we were bowled over by a party that had already gotten started. And not just a few earlybirds, the room was already packed, cupcakes were whisked off plates before they even made the table and champagne corks had already been popped. We were absorbed by the pulsing crowd and that was it – Twelfth Planet Press Hour was on for young and old! There was already a queue to buy books, there were so many familiar faces to say hi to and catch up with. It was the perfect way to start the con – everyone was catching up with each other and just getting into the groove. (Photo to the right and those below thanks to Tansy and Finchy) And because it was gold coin donation day, people who weren’t going to come to the con were able to come in and say hi and grab a cupcake. (Thanks to all of you who did!)

We’d vaguely planned a schedule for the hour but that just got thrown to the side – this party didn’t need to get warmed up, it arrived raring to go! And it was just what I hoped it would be! We had a roaming juggler from the Women’s Circus wandering around to add a bit of a carnival feel to the event. And friends helped out serving drinks, offering cakes around and selling books. I’m so grateful to everyone who helped make this party a success. Thank you to everyone who did.

I got up on a chair at some point in the evening to offer some “remarks”. When I got up there and the crowd quietened down, I looked around at the many people in the room looking back at me and was overwhelmed. I was really touched by the show of support for my press and authors and for me. It’s not often that you have a chance to just take a moment and see it. It’s so easy to get caught up in all the things that you do but as I stood there and looked around, I saw friends helping me make the party happen, and my press successful. I saw authors (old and new) proud to be a part of this thing, and I saw the community supporting and encouraging me and the press along the way to just go and see what we can be. I took the moment to readjust my personal perspective on things.

I then got to say basically everything I’d talked over with Jonathan that morning that I wanted to say. I thanked Terri for her ideas and her efforts helping me with the party. I launched the three new books – two are out now Through Splintered Walls by Kaaron Warren, book 6 of The Twelve Planets and Salvage by Jason Nahrung, an Australian gothic novella and Cracklescape by Margo Lanagan, book 7 of The Twelve Planets will be available in August. And then I made a very exciting announcement – the launch of our new crime imprint Deadlines, the first title of which to be our first novel A Trifle Dead by Hobart author Livia Day (out later this year).

And then I got to grab a glass of champagne myself, pose in photos and see a few people. My cousins popped in briefly which meant a lot to me and as  I looked around, I saw so many friends and familiar faces. It was such a great event!

Some more of the cupcakes:

From top left to right:

Thief of Lives inspired perfume bottles; A Stitch in Time Travel inspired knitting related balls of yarn, knitting needles and loops of yarn; cameos for Love and Romanpunk; the hand mirrors for Cracklescape; Lucy Sussex showing she matches the Glitter Rose cupcakes which were a little bit glittery; the table of cupcakes including the TPP logo, police tape on blue for Bad Power and ghosts for Showtime. Other cupcakes had sugared almonds for Through Splintered Walls, trifle for A Trifle Dead and bloody droplets for Deadlines imprint.

And Cat got all the Twelve Planets present ( we had 10!!) and me to pose for photos. These really feel like they’d be appropriate at the end of our movie of the week where we can all reflect back on how keen we looked at the beginning!

This photo is courtesy of Cat Sparks’ Flickr stream. From top left to right: Deborah Biancotti, Kirstyn McDermott, me, Rosaleen Love, Margo Lanagan, Narrelle M Harris. And bottom left to right: Cat Sparks, Lucy Sussex, Kaaron Warren, Deb Kalin and Tansy Rayner Roberts. These (and Sue Isle and Thoraiya Dyer) amazing and talented women took me seriously when I pitched the Twelve Planets at them. What an honour.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Con reports, in parts

Willow

I keep feeling like I should apologise for saying that I had a really great time at Continuum 8. I think it’s because I’m so used to hearing complaints about cons. But I don’t really have any so herein, and to follow, are a bunch of upbeat happy reporting ins of the weekend.

First up, my haul.

The rule when you’re a trader is, if you brought books in your suitcase, you can only buy books if you sell books. It’s a completely different rule to the To Be Read ones as it relates to baggage weight. Luckily. I had sent 4 boxes of Twelfth Planet Press books and table bits and pieces in advance via TNT to Alex’s but they let me down and I realised on Thursday at lunchtime that my books would not be there in time for the con. A quick call to Terri and we worked out we could pack an extra suitcase of books and bring that. Which we did. And discovered that this is probably a better option in future, both for the cost and the reduction in stress. This meant I had an extra suitcase for fitting in any purchases from the con!

So my haul! And I get To Be Read pile points because they were all books I had been intending to get so were technically on my reading list. That’s ok, right?

I had a very busy weekend. For me, most of the con was experienced in terms of the events or commitments I and the press had on. I got to kind of slow down and take in more of the con on Sunday when all that was behind me. I had a really awesome time. I didn’t get to speak to as many people as I wanted and of course I had all those half conversations you have at things like this where you’re constantly in the middle of conversations the whole weekend long – it’s both fantastic and frustrating. But I got to hang out with my friends, get lots of real life hugs and I got to get my groove back. I love fandom and I love the scene and I had a really great time. I’m so overwhelmed and humbled and thankful to everyone who helped me out this weekend and who support the press – both over the weekend and in general. I’ve come home happy and inspired and with oh so much more work to do. And I wouldn’t want it any other way.

I can’t wait for Conflux 2013!

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Willow

We’ve sent all our forthcoming books to the printers, we’re in the process of making our lists and checking them twice –> Twelfth Planet Press is off to Natcon 2012/Continuum 8 in Melbourne. We shall be in the dealers room all weekend! You can also find us at:

Twelfth Planet Press Hour on Friday Night – its a gold coin donation day at Continuum so open to all and sundry!

Ever wondered how your favorite Twelve Planet collection would taste like in cupcake form? Then come along to the Twelfth Planet Cocktail hour, to celebrate the launch of the newest Twelve Planets, Through Splintered Walls, by Kaaron Warren, and Cracklescape by Margo Lanagan, plus the new TPP novella Salvage by Jason Nahrung. All your other favourite Twelve Planets will be there and we’ll also be making a surprise announcement!

Each book will be lovingly interpreted as a cupcake by master baker, Terri Sellen. Your cocktail choice is entirely your own…

Galactic Suburbia will record an episode live over the weekend,

Embiggen Books Event, 5pm Saturday

A book launch with a difference! Come join host Ian Mond, TPP publisher Alisa Krasnostein and TPP authors as they launch the Twelve Planets into space, via a live podcast from Embiggen Books. Find out what goes in to putting together this acclaimed series of boutique collections. Hijinks will undoubtedly ensue.

A Stitch In Time Travel Preview
Come and help beta test a pattern from the upcoming new craft ebook from Twelfth Planet Press.
Crochet hooks optional.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Checking back in

Willow

Well. This blogging thing has fallen over. I’ve got so many posts I want to write and I’m beside myself that right now I have absolutely no time to even draft out words for them. This week went by in a blur. Last weekend we had our engagement party, just a small thing for very close family and friends, and I want to post about that and some other wedding related things. I’m hoping to grab some photos first – one of my uncles took like 450 photos! Can’t wait to see them. Anyway, we were utterly exhausted Sunday night after the weekend and that’s never a good way to enter the work week.

By Thursday I was so knackered that I got into work, woke up and realised I felt vile, sat at my desk working for 2 hours and ran hot and cold and awful and then got back in my car, drove an hour and a half home and collapsed fully clothed on my bed. And slept. And slept. And Slept. And I don’t nap. I mean, I NEVER nap. Not even when I’ve pulled an allnighter or flown 36 hours to the other side of the world. I hate napping. And then I was Zombie!GJ for the rest of the evening. Bleurgh. I would have also taken Friday off but we had this big meeting on and I knew that I needed to be there for it to figure out my role in the project (which I’m glad I did attend because now I do know what’s going on and how to move forward. Also weird to have been doing this gig long enough to go to random meeting with 10 people from all over the place and know like half of them really well.)

Anyway, I mostly stayed on nutrition track this week. Treat meal came a little early in the week but I’ve managed to avoid falling off the tracks this weekend. Exercise though fell by the wayside. I was just so freaking tired, I was literally dragging myself through the week and standing next to walls to avoid falling over. I skipped three days of exercise, only getting back on the wagon yesterday. So I only managed to lose 0.5kg this week. On the other hand, normally for me, a week like this one, I would have yoyo’ed back up a bit so that I’m taking as a win. But yeah. One of the excuses I noted down that I use before I started this thing, is “I feel sick” and that is such a hard one to navigate. Should I have continued dragging my arse through cardio on Thurs and Fri? I do know my body and self pretty well and I was hitting the wall on Thursday. I reckon if I hadn’t pulled the plug on some stuff, I’d have been ill in bed this weekend.

Fact is, currently this routine is unsustainable. There is no time left in the day after commuting, working, exercise and sleep. I’ve been trying to find time for TPP and that’s ended up being taken out of the sleep bucket. Doesn’t really work long term. I’m a bit better on track with the upcoming books - Showtime is at the printers, Through Splintered Walls is half at proofing and half at finalising final copy edits, I’ve begun working through Salvage edits, Cracklescape is almost ready to go to layout and we’re working on edits for Asymmetry. Though I’m only ever happy when it’s not me being the bottleneck. And it’s possible that with the end of last week, I am. And of course my readers are working through the novel manuscripts and I’ve made a start on those. Publicity and marketing are behind. And I had one grant application to submit last week (done but through the haze of exhaustion) and one still to be written for next month. And I’m working on a talk that I’m giving on a Saturday in a couple of weeks. And so on and on and on.

It’s not sustainable right now.  Tired. So very very tired.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Showtime Cover

Willow

Check out the gorgeous cover (and back!) that Amanda has designed for Showtime (Book 5 in the Twelve Planets) by Narrelle M Harris!

Never ask me which is my favourite – I’ll never be able to decide!

 

 

Here’s what the text on the back cover says:

Family drama can be found anywhere: in kitchens, in cafes. Derelict hotels, showground rides. Even dungeons far below ruined Hungarian castles. (Okay, especially in Hungarian dungeons.)

Old family fights can go on forever, especially if you’re undead. If an opportunity came to save someone else’s family, the way you couldn’t save your own, would you take it?

Your family might include ghosts, or zombies, or vampires. Maybe they just have allergies. Nobody’s perfect.

Family history can weigh on the present like a stone.  But the thing about families is, you can’t escape them. Not ever. And mostly, you don’t want to.

 

It’s a beautiful collection of pieces, each one utterly classic and completely new at the same time… In Narrelle’s hands, everything old is new again, and everything new has the weight of age.  There’s magic in that, and in this book. — Seanan McGuire

 

The book went to the printer’s last week so I’m expecting the proofs any day now. Can’t wait to see this one in real life!

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Seeking to expand our ePublishing team

Willow

We have a lot in the works over at Twelfth Planet Press and are looking for enthusiastic people to come on board and help us. Hence another ad!

Twelfth Planet Press has several great opportunities for those looking to gain experience in ePublishing and be part of a fast growing indie press. The Twelfth Planet Press ePublishing team is expanding to meet the demand for high quality eBook production. Several short term intern positions and a volunteer eBook Designer will play a vital role in the development and delivery of Twelfth Planet Press eBooks and online products by supporting the conversion of our back catalogue to eBooks and in-development projects.
As the successful candidate, you will love reading, have experience in copyediting and proofing, have competent to advanced computer proficiency, have access to eReader software (preference will be given to applicants with access to multiple platforms) and if applying for the eBook Designer position, will have experience with coding. You will be enthusiastic, with strong communication skills, have attention to fine details and be willing to manipulate data. You will be a team player, open to feedback and constructive criticism but also an independent worker with initiative and ideas.

These are volunteer positions with no salary attached. It is expected that these roles will offer experience, skill development, network building, exposure and perks including Twelfth Planet Press product. These roles will be filled by more than one person, in more than one location. This role is not limited to Australian applicants.

Your application should include a cover letter addressing aspects of the job description as presented in this advertisement, detailing your relevant experience in proofing, copyediting and/or eBook layout and production, your interest and involvement in publishing, what you hope to get out of the experience as well as how much time you have available for this role.
Email your application to contact@twelfthplanetpress.com along with your current cv by February 14th 2012.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Seeking Publicity and Promotions Coordinator

Willow

Twelfth Planet Press has a great opportunity for someone looking to be part of a fast growing indie press and gain experience in the world of publishing. The Publicity and Promotions Coordinator will play a valuable and key role in the Twelfth Planet Press team and will drive the promotion and expansion in the international publishing scene.

As the successful candidate, you will love speculative fiction, have knowledge or experience of the publishing industry and a passion for independent press. Publicity, promotions or marketing experience is appreciated, but not required. You will be enthusiastic, outgoing with strong communication skills and interested in building on the networks and promotional opportunities already developed and used in house. You will be a team player, open to feedback and constructive criticism but also an independent worker with initiative and ideas.

Role description:

  • familiarity with Twelfth Planet Press products, both published and forthcoming
  • writing content for press releases, website and social media outlets
  • developing and expanding promotion contacts and networks
  • developing a marketing strategy
  • representing Twelfth Planet Press at conventions and other industry related events

This is a volunteer position with no salary attached. However, it is expected that this role will offer publishing industry experience, writing skill development, networking opportunities, increased industry profile and perks including Twelfth Planet Press products. This role may be filled by more than one person, in more than one location. This role is not limited to Australian applicants.

Your application should include a cover letter addressing aspects of the job description as presented in this advertisement, detailing your relevant experience, your interest and involvement in speculative fiction publishing, why you want to join the Twelfth Planet Press team and what you hope to get out of the experience as well as how much time you have available for this role. Your application should also include examples of any previous promotional work and short writing examples (preferably non fiction).

Email your application to contact@twelfthplanetpress.com along with your current cv by February 29th 2012.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Willow

Twelfth Planet Press Call for Submissions:

A Stitch in Time Travel

Craft Ebook Project

Twelfth Planet Press is looking for innovative and fun science fiction, fantasy or horror inspired craft projects on the theme of time travel for a Geek Craft ebook to be released at Craftonomicon, the Australian National science fiction convention, 8 – 11 June, 2012.

Projects

We’re looking for anything from a knitted scarf or jumper to socks, toys, hats and anything and everything in between. Draw inspiration from your favourite books, comics, games, movies and television. We want it creative and geeky!

Some examples of what we’re looking for:

Knits for Nerds

Teeny-Tiny Mochimochi

Steampunk Softies

The AntiCraft

 

Submission details

Your submission should include:

  1. your pattern with clear step-by-step, repeatable instructions;
  2. list of materials and supplies required;
  3. photos for easy reproduction of your project by others;
  4. whether your pattern has been beta tested by others
  5. your contact and paypal details.

Wearable patterns should include suggested sizings. Consider using http://www.craftyarncouncil.com/sizing.html. We will give preference to submissions that provide a range of sizes.

Your photos should show the completed work but might also include steps along the production process. They should be in colour and good lighting, with a minimum of 72dpi resolution.

Send your submission to contact@twelfthplanetpress.com with “Craft Project Submission” as your subject heading.

Submission Period Closes April 30, 2012.

Payment: $50 for each pattern or tutorial and a copy of the final publication.

 

Caveats

We are looking only for previously unpublished works. Please note, work published on a blog is considered previously published.

We are not accepting any works derived from copyrighted franchises.

We are aware that riffing off a theme or idea is a large component of this kind of project. Please let us know about the original products that inspired you so we can determine whether your submission encroaches on any intellectual property rights or copyright infringements.

Additionally, if you do obtain permission to design a project inspired by someone else’s creative work, please include this with your submission.

 

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Serendipity

Willow

I had a really good week. One of those rare great weeks that I can’t even remember the last time I had one. And I don’t mean a week in which something awesome and unexpected happens. I mean, that the whole week rocked.

Monday I had to tell the boss I had given notice and that Friday would be my last day. I’d been kinda dreading it because I wanted to avoid discussing it. He’d been away since about 8th of Dec so… yeah it went how I thought it would go.

Tuesday though was the team’s farewell lunch for me and M, who was also leaving. It was really lovely and my face hurt from smiling for the rest of the day. A couple of past team members came along which was so lovely for the opportunity to catch up with them. And we both were given a voucher for a manicure/facial and I got this frog, which is a bit of a work in-joke. I think it’s hilarious and I’m going to take it to work and put it on my new desk.

And then when I got back to the office, reception called to tell me I had a delivery and when I wandered down to collect it, I discovered that C had sent me flowers and chocolates to wish me good luck on my change of job. And everyone agreed that he is a great guy and a keeper. But I already knew that.

Wednesday and Thursday I spent tying up loose ends, writing handover notes and filing and trying to mentally and emotionally move on. I’m kinda sad about leaving this team and the work. I’ve been there 4 years and I feel like I accomplished a few biggish kind of achievements and worked towards progressing some weaker areas. I networked a lot and met a lot of really great people, both in my agency and outside it. And I’m going to miss my team. Though M is also leaving so the team is kind of splitting up in any case.

Friday was my last day and I spent it really manically trying to finish up memos and letters to pass on to the others to just wrap up and send out. And I packed up my office and we had afternoon tea and then … then I left. And I couldn’t really believe that I had given them my keys to the building and was actually leaving. There were lots of hugs and that was the moment that I finally realised it was real and that I was sad. And J gave me the gorgeous card up in the top photo which says “Well-behaved women rarely make history”. I’d gotten a really lovely group card and so many people said so many beautiful and well meant things and then I got this follow up one from a teammate who I have I guess gotten really close to only in the last year or so. We’ve had so many heart to hearts and she held my hand at work through Swancon. So sad to leave her but also so touched that she really “got” me. Isn’t that what we all want in life, to be understood?

C had dropped me to work and so had picked me up, and attended the small farewell afternoon tea so I had him to leave with and not feel really down about having left my team. And we headed off to do more shopping and then to have an early dinner at the Daily Planet before meeting Marianne and Jonathan to see Ira Glass! I had been so looking forward to this. We headed up to the bar to hang out, wondering if they might come up there but they didn’t and then I couldn’t remember if we’d booked our tickets to be seated together. We hadn’t, as I recall now, we’d just talked about it online and both bought tickets at the same time. It was only then that I realised that we would just be at the same event together but not actually *with* each other. So we went in and were looking for where our seats, they were 3 rows from the front and C turned to me and said, “really?” and all I could do was shrug and say, “I’m a REALLY big fan”. And then … and then you won’t believe it. Our seats were right next to Marianne and Jonathan. Unplanned, pure coincidence, utter serendipity. And in that exact moment, as we sat down next to our friends and C settled in for 2 hours of watching someone he’d never heard of speak, I knew that the universe was smiling down at me, and that everything will be be ok. That I am in the right place, at the right time. Finally.

And I just loved Ira Glass. It was a fantastic performance. Really interesting and engaging and so very very enlightening, not just on how they  put the show (This American Life) together but on what they intend for the show to be and a lot on good storytelling. I got a lot out of it – first the buzz of inspiration to want to go home immediately and throw myself back into TPP but second, he had a lot of interesting things to say about storytelling and on building momentum and how to seduce your reader/listener to not put the work down/turn off the radio. Since I’m currently reading novel manuscript submissions and thinking about that a lot, it couldn’t have been a better time to immerse myself in the careful musings of such a great storyteller/editor. And it made me realise how the asking for only 3 chapters is really a great submission process because, I should NEED to ask for the rest of the manuscript because I NEED to know where the story goes. And if I don’t, then that’s not a project for me. I also really got a lot out of how he spoke about the show and how he thinks about what it is and so on. I think you do need to know what your intent is from the outset. If not what it will end up being, at least what it is that you set out to do. Because that should underpin every decision you make after that and should allow you to constantly check back in with whether what you are doing now is consistent with what your project model or philosophy is.  At the end of the day, when I’m stuck on rejections, I do this, I look back at what TPP is and what I see that it should be, and if something doesn’t fit with that, then it’s not a project for me.

After the show, we headed off for coffee, the four of us and just hung out and caught up. And it was the perfect end to a damn fine week.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


A bunch of Twelfth Planet Press reminders

Willow

Before I forget to remind, we’ve got a bunch of things going on at TPP.

Firstly, our sale off a bunch of titles ends Dec 31, 2011. Visit our website here and grab A Book of Endings for $16, Glitter Rose for $20, Horn and Bleed for $9.60 each, any of the first 3 Twelve Planets for $14.40, Sprawl for $20 and a bunch more.

Secondly, our novel manuscript submission period opens January 1, 2012 and ends January 31, 2012. Check out all the details on guidelines etc here.

Thirdly, we’re supporting the Australian Women Writers Challenge 2012 with a 10% discount on all our books which fit the challenge all year long. Here’s how.

Fourthly, enter our Goodreads Giveaway to win a copy of Deborah Biancotti’s Bad Power:

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Bad Power by Deborah Biancotti

Bad Power

by Deborah Biancotti

Giveaway ends January 20, 2012.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Fifthly, keep an eye out for more TPP announcements over the next fortnight or so!

 

 

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Bad Power – Palming the Lady

Willow

We’re expecting the arrival of Bad Power by Deborah Biancotti – Book 4 in the Twelve Planets series – any day now. To whet your appetite in the meantime, enjoy a series of excerpts from and about the book.

Palming the Lady

“She told me my future.”

“What was it?”

“In the words of Dorothy Parker-”

“I know. No one gets a happy ending.”

“You want to hear something really creepy, you should ask her what she sees in her own future.”

Detective Palmer is called to the home of Matthew Webb, an anxious young medical student who claims he’s being stalked by a homeless woman. When Palmer takes the nameless woman in, she finds she has an uncanny ability to tell the future. By the time Palmer unravels the truth about so-called ‘Mad Mary’, Palmer herself must confront the devastating future that Mary has left her – a future where the only forgiveness available to her will be her own.

Preorder your copy of Bad Power here.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


I keep meaning to update

Willow

Really, I do keep meaning to update but time is just getting away from me. Seriously, where the hell did November go? I’m not even sure that we actually did all 30 days of it? C and I keep looking at each other and wondering where the month went but also noting that we did a heck of a lot of things this year too. I’m planning on making a wrap up end of year list to remind myself because I know it’s going to be ridiculous.

I’m still doing my 6am starts with being at work by 7.30am. And that means I’m going to bed 10ish which feels like I have very little time in the evenings, or outside work. It must be about the same though, surely? Though, I am also using these hours so probably I have less hanging about in my out of work hours. Today we opened up the Dance Central 2 game that C bought me cause I said I would dance if I had it. And we had a good hour of that. I kinda think that dancing is a far more fun way to get fit than booooring going to the gym agaaaain. Plus I’ve been watching So You Think You Can Dance on Friday nights on 11 and missing that part of my life a bit. And then I had a terrible dream last night, a nightmare if you will, that I went to audition for SYTYCD and the only judge on the panel was Robert Shearman and my body just … well … it got old and it couldn’t do any of the things it used to. Well that put a light under my bushel (is that the saying?).

Other than that, we’ve been recording podcasts - Galactic Suburbia the week before last and then again this week. And I’m enjoying actually finishing novels. I have a new one for this week’s episode and am determined to finish Yarn by it too. So that we can get on with the spoilerific podcast for that. But somehow, I’m working my way through my very pared down to read queue by my bed and actually books are making it to the real bookshelves at the other end of the house. I can read! Phew!! Though I keep thinking of all the things I want to get done in my holidays and forgetting that I am not 9 anymore and it’s only 10 days and not 10 weeks. Bummer.

We also recorded a new episode of Live and Sassy. You know what December is like – I really don’t know why we a) all leave everything to the last 4 weeks of the year and b) have this imaginary line in time where simply MUST catch up with everyone we know before the end of the year, as though terrible things will happen if we leave some of them til the week after just cause it’s the first week of the next year. Anyway, so our calendars didn’t coordinate so well and we skyped this episode. We’ll be back to doing it live in a cafe and annoying our listeners with background noise early in the new year.

And books! And projects! I’m really pushing to get a few projects to the printer’s by Xmas so that I can work in a I’m in the Future kind of publishing world in 2012. We’ll see how that goes. I’m expecting Bad Power to arrive any day now. And we have Showtime in layout proofing. And Through Splintered Walls is shaping up nicely. I’m also working on a novella project which we’ll announce soon. And another possible sekret project. And of course, I’m clearing the decks for the novel submission month of January.

And planning a wedding. I only just realised today that I get to plan a holiday as well since we know where we are off to on our honeymoon. EXCITING!!! Yesterday we all trouped back to the wedding venue and did very important things like sign the contract and pay the deposit. Tis booked. And they said “see you in 8 – 10 weeks before the wedding” – OMG! And I got a showbag which was rather exciting. Or you know … useful. The venue owner finally managed to convey to my mother what I had failed to do so -the awesomeness of bonbonierre. It’s not a thing in our culture so it’s a completely foreign convept to us, I guess. However, we now have some awesome ideas to play with for that.

So, you know. Busy.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


Moment of panic

Willow

You know, I really do love this early morning start thing. For a bunch of extra reasons that I didn’t mention in yesterday’s post – I can take my full lunch half hour now instead of needing it to make up time. I don’t get the mid afternoon slump. I get a chance to do a few things in the morning before my phone starts ringing etc. (Half my team starts at 7.30 so it’s not silent but it is peaceful). I can order my lunch early and have best pick of the muffins. And I really do feel better, within myself. I’m sleeping more. I’m eating less junk food at night. And I’m making the small random changes I want to make, because I feel like I can. Like … finally taking my mug down to the canteen instead of getting a takeaway cup. The kind of stuff you worry about later when you have less “concerns”.

But.

And there is always a but.

My answer when people ask me how I juggle so much stuff? Yeah, it used to be “I sleep less.” And now I am sleeping up to two hours more a day. I kinda needed that time to get stuff done. I’m really starting to feel it – the less time in the evening after work to do both sewing and also editing etc. It’s a struggle. Yes, I had an hour massage (crick in the neck came back whilst travelling) today and I am probably blowing it out of proportion. But still. I will say that sticking to this routine over the weekend meant we’d accomplishing A LOT by lunchtime each day. And it might be that I just need to be stricter about TPP working hours on the weekend from now on. Something tells me that feeling better physically *should* eventually translate to better quality, more efficient work. Right? Right?

ETA: I remembered too that I am now reading for an hour before bed. I used to work right up until falling asleep, whilst watching TV. Now I am getting much wanted reading done – yay – at the expense of work – not yay and much less television watching – both yay and not yay.

Mirrored from Champagne and Socks.


The Twelve Planets

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

Gwyneth Jones has this to say on the Twelve Planets volumes so far, which she posted about on her personal blog:

I’ve been reading The Twelve Planets’ latest selections, and enjoying them very much, starting with Deborah Biancotti: police procedural with a sinister undertow of the weird, progressing through Tansy Rayner Roberts (Romanpunk), Lucy Sussex (Thief of Lives), and Sue Isle (Nightsiders). These collections, just four stories in a slim paperback, are an excellent idea, a tasting menu of Australasian female genre writers. Romanpunk has an intriguing twist on the noble vampire and mortal girlfriend* story (see, these vampires are really Lamia, they’re Roman in origin, and very well connected, but they find the C21 street has its uses). Ever wondered why pretty-boy Caligula was such an unmitigated horror in private life? Or why Nero was finally forced to kill his mother? Refreshingly, unlike Buffy, the mortal girlfriend is not allergic to education and actually has a life… Lucy Sussex I can safely say needs no introduction: I loved her beautiful story about modern and ancient Babylon, “Alchemy”. Sue Isle has created a daunting, yet not hopeless day after tomorrow Western Australia; linked stories all set in the same moment, the moment, for various characters, when you realise that climate change has won, and civilisation is not coming back. So you stop mourning, and you move on… Made me wish there was a novel.

Someone said, recently, the Finnish sf community gives me hope for the future of the genre… These Australians give me hope for the future of female, and even feminist, writers in sf.

 

I couldn’t hope for better feedback.


Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

Cross posted from the Twelfth Planet Press blog:

Twelfth Planet Press is looking to develop a new line of dynamic, original genre novels. Twelfth Planet Press novels will push boundaries to question, inspire, engage and challenge. We are specifically looking to acquire material outside that which is typically considered by mainstream publishers.

We are looking for science fiction, fantasy, horror and crime. We will consider borderline literary, new weird, steampunk, space opera, hard science fiction, soft science fiction, urban fantasy, cyberpunk, military science fiction, young adult, paranormal romance and everything in between.

Please note we are not looking for epic fantasy, splatterpunk, novellas, nonfiction, previously published material (where published includes electronic or audio ie on your blog, as a podcast, ebook etc) and unfinished work. We will not consider multiple or simultaneous submissions. Please take some time to familiarise yourself with the kind of content we publish. We are not interested in gratuitous violence, misogyny and gore or sex scenes for shock value.We are looking to acquire all English language territory rights and ebook rights. We are offering advances and royalties.
How to Submit:

The manuscript submissions period will commence January 1, 2012 and end January 31, 2012.

Email the first 3 chapters of your finished manuscript and a brief (1-2 page) synopsis to manuscripts@twelfthplanetpress.com in rtf file format. Title your subject heading with the genre/subgenre for our email management. You will receive an automated email receipt of your submission.

Your synopsis should include a summary of all the characters and plot (including the ending) and a brief discussion of your intended audience, your likely sales market, what other books are like yours and why your book is better or why your book is needed.
Include your full contact details, including email address, manuscript title, word count and a brief biography. Full manuscripts will be requested from those submissions which make it to the second round.All submissions will be considered by our team of readers. Manuscripts will be read in the order of their receipt. The team will pass up manuscripts for the second round and submission of full manuscripts will be on request at that time. Depending on volume, we are intending to respond to all submissions by June 30, 2012. There will be subsequent submissions periods after January 2012.
Checklist:

Submissions period:  January 1, 2012 – January 31, 2012.

Email address:  manuscripts@twelfthplanetpress.com

First 3 chapters and a 1-2 page synopsis of your book with marketing and sales outline in rtf file.

Include your full contact details, word count and brief biography.

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

If you haven’t yet donated to the World SF Travel Fund – to help send Charles Tan to World Fantasy Con and then other fans in years to come – now’s your chance!

We have teamed up to offer the next five people who donate $50 or more a signed copy of Marianne de Pierres’s Glitter Rose! This is in addition to the regular reward. De Pierres is the very successful author of the Parrish Plessis books from Orbit and the SF series Sentients of Orion.

We are also offering copies of Twelfth Planet Press books Nightsiders and Love and Romanpunk to anyone donating just $25 or more!

Please help us raise more money for the fund, towards a third year of operations!

To claim the offer, make a donation through the peerbackers project, then e-mail worldsftravelfund@gmail.com with your name, the amount of your donation and your choice of reward. Remember these rewards are in addition to the regular ones you’ll receive!

 

 

 

 

 


Second Season of the Twelve Planets

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

The second season of the Twelve Planets is now available for preorder. The three books will be out before the end of November and are:

Bad Power by Deborah Biancotti

Showtime by Narrelle M Harris

Through the Splintered Walls by Kaaron Warren

 

The season most definitely has a dark bent. Biancotti explores use & abuse of power. You’ll find yourself wondering just what your own bad power is. Harris brings her quick sense of humour & talent for the quirky to her collection. You’ll laugh but you’ll also be deeply discomforted. Warren will take you on a journey through the back roads of Australian towns and leave you feeling uneasy and more than a little creeped out.

Preorders for the season can ber mde over at the Twelfth Planet Press store where you can also upgrade your subscription from a single or two book purchase to a subscription to the full series.


Quick Twelfth Planet Press Announcement

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

Twelfth Planet Press will be closed to submissions for the rest of the year so that we can focus on the Twelve Planets collection series as well as catching up on our backlog of submissions.

 


Not so chatty afterall

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

I started the day with such energy and about 5 blogposts which I’ve been meaning to flesh out all week on the boil. And then I ended up taking that energy and reading a good chunk of Joanna Russ’s How to Suppress Women’s Writing (one of the books we’ll be discussing on the upcoming spoilerific Joanna Russ episode on Galactic Suburbia). Reading this book has been a bit uncomfortable. Obviously there are elements of it that I was already aware and attuned to but other aspects have had me questioning a few things about my own experience and also seeing a few people, and their reactions and responses to me in certain arenas, in a different light. I also did some reading for Last Short Story. And like 5 or 6 loads of laundry. And lots and lots of cleaning up after puppy.

And some rearranging of things at C’s place. I am moving in with C. He actually asked me at the beginning of the year and we agreed that it was better timing after Swancon. I actually didn’t realise just how much Swancon was going to take out of me. It’s taking so much longer than I thought it would to get the emotional and mental energy back up to tackle things, to get up to speed on publishing, to be capable of socialising and a bunch of other things too. So the moving thing. Not really what I have energy for. And, as they say, one of the most stressful things you do in life. Yay. But it’s getting there slowly (not really, I feel like I have moved hardly anything). Most of Twelfth Planet Press is down here and in one room, more like a warehouse than an office but able to function and run things. Why do I have so many other (personal) books? And stuff. I have a lot of stuff. Still, the one carload at a time thing is starting to make me cry. I have to get a mover for the large items of furniture anyway so I am starting to lean towards packing boxes and having them brought down at the same time. Now just to actually leverage space in C’s house for me. Too little storage!

So I have much work still to be done this weekend. I feel very behind on the Twelve Planets. And ASif! And I want to get some traction on Last Short Story. And now that I have sorted my next two interviews for Galactic Chat, I have reading to do in preparation of those. And And And. You know how it goes.


Some Swancon Highlights

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

Being on the convention committee, it turns out, makes for a very different experience and view of a convention. I had no concept of time for most of it. And I didn’t get to have catch ups with many people. I did, on the other hand, actually meet and speak to more people than I normally would. It meant then, that the highlights for me were often fleeting moments or conversations or things. And all the little things that individuals contributed which made up the big event itself.

Terri made this awesome (and gluten free!) TPP logo cake for a small celebration we had after we launched the Twelve Planets series. And in the background you can see she’s made little cakes which were a version (I think?) of her Galactic Suburbia 1st birthday cake.

I was actually too busy and hadn’t had a chance to look at the fan art show for the first couple of days so I only found out about this work *after* Tehani and C were in a bidding war to buy it for me:

Not sure it’s come out too well here but it’s a set of champagne glasses inspired by Glitter Rose. Which OMG – was so uplifting that someone responded to the collection by wanting to create some artwork inspired by it and also OMG YES! – champagne glasses are so appropriate! And also, I was so touched that they both wanted to buy them for me. I’m looking forward to having them out on display.


Toiling away at the business

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

I’ve been working on marketing and promotion for the Twelve Planets this week. A book doesn’t finish when it arrives in bountiful copies in numerous boxes on your (mother’s) doorstep. In some ways, it’s only just the beginning of the process. This realisation is a hideous one after the months spent working on finetuning the contents.

But it’s the way it is. So this week I have been working on some media releases (Nick, I can call it that because I *am* sending them out to actual real media outlets :P ). I sent my draft to a couple of people for comment and both of their individual responses were “dude, if this is what you do when sleep-deprived, OMG” (I paraphrased slightly, whatev).

And that had me thinking about a couple of things. I’m dog-tired. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in well over a month and before that too. I feel run down, I’m in post-con crash and emotionally I’m very fragile. All true. But I’m also a small business owner. And there are no days off or tired days or emotionally fragile days when it’s your own business. There’s no sick leave, no annual leave and no holidays. It’s my own hard-earned day job money that I’ve invested in this business. And the outcomes are mine to wear. I could have spent the money on a golf club membership or several trips to Paris or many other expensive pursuits. But I chose to invest it in this project of mine, this idea that I believe in and that I think, if I work hard enough at it, might just, one day, be something.

So media releases and promotion and marketing go on. And so does the beat.

And as I sit in full life reevaluation mode, questioning the direction I want to choose for my future, wondering if I’ve backed the right horse, I still plug away at the night job. I don’t even question it. The programme works if you work it. But you have to work at it every single day. Every day, I make sure that in some way I have promoted or publicised a title. No matter what else I do in the day, I make sure I’ve told someone new about the work I’ve published.


Love and Romanpunk

Willow

Originally published at Champagne and Socks. You can comment here or there.

Love and Romanpunk by Tansy Rayner Roberts has been released into the wilds. I can’t believe the second volume of The Twelve Planets project is already out. This year is speeding by!

I have a couple of copies up on Goodreads as a Giveaway and the widget below to show off the lovely cover by Amanda Rainey (of course!)

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Love and Romanpunk by Tansy Rayner Roberts

Love and Romanpunk

by Tansy Rayner Roberts

Giveaway ends May 31, 2011.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

And here’s what the back of the book says:

Thousands of years ago, Julia Agrippina wrote the true history of her family, the Caesars. The document was lost, or destroyed, almost immediately.
(It included more monsters than you might think.)

Hundreds of years ago, Fanny and Mary ran away from London with a debauched poet and his sister.
(If it was the poet you are thinking of, the story would have ended far more happily, and with fewer people having their throats bitten out.)

Sometime in the near future, a community will live in a replica Roman city built in the Australian bush. It’s a sight to behold.
(Shame about the manticores.)

Further in the future, the last man who guards the secret history of the world will discover that the past has a way of coming around to bite you.
(He didn’t even know she had a thing for pointy teeth.)

The world is in greater danger than you ever suspected. Women named Julia are stronger than they appear. Don’t let your little brother make out with silver-eyed blondes. Immortal heroes really don’t fancy teenage girls. When love dies, there’s still opera. Family is everything. Monsters are everywhere. Yes, you do have to wear the damned toga.

History is not what you think it is.

LOVE AND ROMANPUNK.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction
Julia Agrippina’s Secret Family Bestiary
Lamia Victoriana
The Patrician
Last of the Romanpunks
Afterword

Love and Romanpunk is available for purchase at twelfthplanetpress.com

And subscriptions to the Twelve Planets can be bought and upgraded at any time.


Sneak Peek! Nightsiders

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After a somewhat traumatic ordeal with TNT, my printer sent me a second copy of the proof of Nightsiders through Australia Post and it arrived on Friday! Here's a sneak peek, we've tweaked something very so slightly from this version. The printed books should arrive in time for their release at the end of March.



Datlow's Honorable Mentions

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I've been so excited watching how Sprawl has been received. You try and make the best book you can but it's such a long time between that process and the cumulative reader response. Will anyone buy it? Will anyone read it? Will they like it? What will they like? All that stuff.

I am constantly interested in readers' picks for Sprawl because I think by now, every story has been singled out somewhere for something. And I was very very happy to see these stories made Ellen Datlow's Honorable Mentions List for her Years Best:

Brown, Simon “Sweep,” Sprawl.
Flinthart, Dirk “Walker,” Sprawl.
Haines, Paul “Her Gallant Needs,” Sprawl.
Kempshall, Pete “Signature Walk,” Sprawl.
Peek, Ben “White Crocodile Jazz,” Sprawl.
Slatter, Angela “Brisneyland by Night,” Sprawl. (Made it all the way to the shortlist)
Warren, Kaaron “Loss,” Sprawl.


Sprawl is on special at Smashwords for just $4.99 until April 14. Use this coupon LY79G to grab a copy.

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Here's a sneak peek at the back cover blurb for the second volume of the Twelve Planets series:

Love and Romanpunk

by Tansy Rayner Roberts

Thousands of years ago, Julia Agrippina wrote the true history of her family, the Caesars.  The document was lost, or destroyed, almost immediately. 
(It included more monsters than you might think.)

Hundreds of years ago, Fanny and Mary ran away from London with a debauched poet and his sister.
(If it was the poet you are thinking of, the story would have ended far more happily, and with fewer people having their throats bitten out.)

Sometime in the near future, a community will live in a replica Roman city built in the Australian bush.  It’s a sight to behold.
(Shame about the manticores.)

Further in the future, the last man who guards the secret history of the world will discover that the past has a way of coming around to bite you.
(He didn’t even know she had a thing for pointy teeth.)

The world is in greater danger than you ever suspected.  Women named Julia are stronger than they appear.  Don’t let your little brother make out with silver-eyed blondes.  Immortal heroes really don’t fancy teenage girls.  When love dies, there’s still opera.  Family is everything.  Monsters are everywhere.  Yes, you do have to wear the damned toga.

History is not what you think it is.

LOVE AND ROMANPUNK.

Above/Below review

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I'm just chasing my tail and might be doing that for the next coupla months. Probably not going to be that interesting a blogger in terms of life - basically I work the day job and then i work the other jobs. Repeat.

Here though are snippets from a gorgeous review by Bibliophile Stalker on Above/Below:

And if Above/Below is any indication of the future, then Twelfth Planet Press is indeed cutting edge.

[I]f either Above or Below were published individually, they would stand well on their own. Combined into this single publication however, they are greater than the sum of their parts, adding another layer that the reader can enjoy. There is also the impact of reading them in a different order, setting a different expectation for the second story read. The book is laid out in such a way that one could start with Ben Peek's Below before reading Stephanie Campisi's Above. What I've come to realize, especially since I was reading this book through an eBook rather than print, is that this quality is lost in the electronic version. As a file in my computer, the narrative is linear: the book starts with Above and then transitions into Below. It is possible to simply skip to Below before reading Above but this feels unnatural, especially when Above is the first section of the eBook. That's not the case though with print--and that reminds me of the value of the book as an artifact. There is no strict "beginning" and starting with Below is as legitimate as starting with Above.

Above/Below is also the product of compelling writing as the action is upbeat and tension is constant. There was never a moment where I felt I could tear myself away from the book, nor is there wasted space.

It's not everyday after all that we come across a book like The Griffin and Sabine trilogy or City of Saints and Madmen: The Book of Ambergris in which the medium or the storytelling technique changes everything. Above/Below is one such book and I say that not just because of the format but due to the quality of the writing as well. While short and immediate, one could spend a long time analyzing the book, poring over the details, debating the politics of the setting, and analyzing the nuances of Campisi and Peek's technique. They're compelling novelettes in their own right but together, a must-read novel for any reader--genre or otherwise--and is easily one of my favorites for 2011
.

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Nightsiders
Sue Isle
Twelve Planets, March 2011

In a future world of extreme climate change, Perth, Western Australia's capital city, has been abandoned. Most people were evacuated to the East by the late '30s and organised infrastructure and services have gone.

A few thousand obstinate and independent souls cling to the city and to the southern towns. Living mostly by night to endure the fierce temperatures, they are creating a new culture in defiance of official expectations. A teenage girl stolen from her family as a child; a troupe of street actors who affect their new culture with memories of the old; a boy born into the wrong body; and a teacher who is pushed into the role of guide tell the story of The Nightside.

Nightsiders comprises four stories and is introduced by Marianne de Pierres.

The Painted Girl
Nation of the Night
Paper Dragons 
The Schoolteacher's Tale
Paper Dragons was originally published in Shiny Issue 5 and was shortlisted for the 2009 Aurealis Award for Best Young Adult Short Story

Locus

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I'm extremely chuffed to read that Sprawl has been listed on the Locus Recommended Reading List for Original Anthologies. That category has some very awesome books in it and I am so delighted to see Sprawl listed among them! 

The Way of the Wizard, John Joseph Adams, ed. (Prime)
Zombies vs. Unicorns, Holly Black & Justine Larbalestier, eds. (McElderry)
The Beastly Bride, Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling, eds. (Viking)
Is Anybody Out There?, Nick Gevers & Marty Halpern, eds. (DAW)
Warriors, George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois, eds. (Tor)
Black Wings: New Tales of Lovecraftian Horror, S.T. Joshi (PS)
Sprawl, Alisa Krasnostein (Twelfth Planet)
Godlike Machines, Jonathan Strahan, ed. (SFBC)
Swords & Dark Magic, Jonathan Strahan & Lou Anders, eds. (HarperCollins)

Additionally, three short stories from Sprawl made the list for Short Stories: "One Saturday Night, with Angel" by Peter M Ball, "Brisneyland By Night" by Angela Slatter and "All the Love in the World" by Cat Sparks. Cat's story has also been reprinted in the Hartwell and Cramer Years Best for 2010.

Rich Horton reviews Sprawl in this February edition of Locus. Of the anthology, he says:

Sprawl was one of a host of anthologies published in Australia last year, and it was one  of the best. The theme is suburbia, explicitly  Australian suburbia. Among a generally strong set of stories the best was Simon Brown’s ‘‘Sweep’’, about a man returning to his family home after his father’s death, and recalling his  childhood, in particular the games he played with a few friends, and some mysterious events in the local countryside, perhaps associated with a solitary man they called ‘‘Sweep the Creep’’. The story effectively evokes a somewhat fraught suburban childhood (that resonates with my own American suburban childhood), crossed with a mystery hinted at with Wolfean subtlety. Another strong piece is Angela Slatter’s ‘‘Brisneyland by Night’’, an urban fantasy riffing on a certain fairy tale, as an investigator for Brisbane’s ‘‘Weyrd’’ community tries to understand why a number of children have recently gone missing.

And in the wrap up end of year essays, Jonathan Strahan says of Sprawl:
With a WorldCon in Australia, there was always going to be a proliferation of new anthologies published, and easily the best of these by quite some margin was Alisa Krasnostein’s Sprawl, which featured fine work from Peter M. Ball, Simon Brown, Angela Slatter, and others.

And in Rich Horton's, he says:
2010 featured a spate of original anthologies from Australia. The strongest were Jonathan Strahan and Jack Dann’s Legends of Australian Fantasy, which I found uneven but very good at its top end; and Alisa Krasnostein’s Sprawl, an anthology of suburban Fantasy and SF.

If that doesn't kick me back into the editing room at high speed, what will?

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I've had a couple of requests and since there are a few awards up for nominations right now, below is hopefully the complete list of projects we were involved with at Twelfth Planet Press in 2010. If you liked any of these and think they deserve to be on awards ballots including the Tin Ducks, Ditmars, Chronos, Hugos and Nebulas, please considering nominating them.


Collections and Anthologies:

Glitter Rose by Marianne de Pierres
Sprawl edited by Alisa Krasnostein (WA editor)

Novellas
Bleed by Peter M Ball
The Angaelien Apocalypse by Matthew Chrulew

Novelettes
"Her Gallant Needs" by Paul Haines (Sprawl) (Vic writer)
The Company Articles of Edward Teach by Thoraiya Dyer
"Sweep" by Simon Brown (Sprawl)
"Gnawer of the Moon Seeks Summit of Paradise" by Anna Tambour (Sprawl)

Short Story
Peter Ball – "One Saturday Night, With Angel" (Sprawl)
Deborah Biancotti – "Never Going Home" (Sprawl)
Stephanie Campisi - "How to Select a Durian at Footscray Market" (Sprawl) (Vic writer)
Thoraiya Dyer – "Yowie" (Sprawl)
Dirk Flinthart – "Walker" (Sprawl)
L L Hannett – "Weightless" (Sprawl)
Pete Kempshall – "Signature Walk" (Sprawl) (WA Writer)
Ben Peek – "White Crocodile Jazz" (Sprawl)
Tansy Rayner Roberts – "Relentless Adaptations" (Sprawl)
Barbara Robson – "Neighbourhood Watch" (Sprawl)
Angela Slatter – "Brisneyland by Night" (Sprawl)
Cat Sparks – "All The Love in the World" (Sprawl)
Kaaron Warren – "Loss" (Sprawl)
Marianne de Pierres - "Mama Ailon" (Glitter Rose)

Fan Writers
Consider your favourite ASif! reviewers for the Ditmars and Tehani Wessely and Mitenae for Tin Duck nominees especially, Alex Pierce for the Chronos.

Design/Art
Amanda Rainey designed all four of our books for 2010.
Dion Hamill's artwork - cover for Bleed, Edward Teach/Angaelien Apocalypse and two internals in Glitter Rose.
Nicole Whittaker - one internal art piece in Glitter Rose
Anna Repp - cover and one internal piece for Glitter Rose (Anna Repp is from USA and eligible for the Hugo Art categories)

Fanzine/Fan Publication
Australian Speculative Fiction in Focus, Alisa Krasnostein et al.
"Boxing Day Super Mega Podcast", Alisa Krasnostein, Tansy Rayner Roberts, Alex Pierce, Gary K. Wolfe, Jonathan Strahan, Grant Watson, and Ian Mond. (WA and Vic Participants)
Galactic Suburbia (Alisa Krasnostein, Alex Pierce and Tansy Rayner Roberts) (WA and Vic Participants)

Achievement
"Snapshot 2010", Alisa Krasnostein, Kathryn Linge, Rachel Holkner, Alexandra Pierce, Tansy Rayner Roberts, and Tehani Wessely.  (WA and Vic Participants)

Atheling
Galactic Suburbia (Alisa Krasnostein, Alex Pierce and Tansy Rayner (WA and Vic Participants)

Above/Below authors piece

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ROR (Ripping Ozzie Reads) have featured an article on Ben Peek and Steph Campisi and their collaboration that produced the novella double Above/Below.

I especially love this quote which I think sums up the work so succinctly:

“We divided the two halves of the book on the strength of our prose,” he explains from the outskirts of Sydney. “Out of the pair of us, Steph has the more beautiful, elegant writing, and so she ended up with Loft, a city that is essentially full of refined and cultured people. That left me with Below, the ugly, dirty secret. That kind of suits me, y’know? So I stripped back my style, left it lean and sparse, and wrote about a culture of people who really don’t have very long to live and whose life is dominated by death.

Alex thought it would be fun to survey the readers to see which order they read the two novellas in and how that affected their experience. As soon as I figure out how to create a poll on Wordpress, I'm going to set that up.


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Who Are the Twelve Planets?

Margo Lanagan, Lucy Sussex, Rosaleen Love, Tansy Rayner Roberts, Deborah Biancotti, Kaaron Warren, Cat Sparks, Sue Isle,
Kirstyn McDermott, Narrelle M Harris, Thoraiya Dyer, Stephanie Campisi.

What Are the Twelve Planets?

The Twelve Planets are twelve boutique collections by some of Australia's finest short story writers. Varied across genre and style, each collection will offer four short stories and a unique glimpse into worlds fashioned by some of our favourite storytellers. Each author has taken the brief of 4 stories and up to 40 000 words in their own direction. Some are quartet suites of linked stories. Others are tasters of the range and style of the writer. Each release will bring something unexpected to our subscriber's mailboxes.

When Are the Twelve Planets

The Twelve Planets will spread over 2011 and 2012, with six books released between February and November each year.
The first three titles will be Nightsiders by Sue Isle (March), Love and Romanpunk by Tansy Rayner Roberts (May) and the third collection will be by Lucy Sussex (July).

How to Receive the Twelve Planets

The Twelve Planets will be available for purchase in several ways:

Single collections will be priced at $20/$23 International each including postage.
A season's pass will offer the three collections of the season for $50/$65 International including postage and each sent out on release.
Full subscriptions to the series are $180/$215 International including postage and each sent out on release.

More information relating to upgrades, ebooks and distribution will be made available in due course.

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It is with sad regret that Twelfth Planet Press announces that the proposed anthology Speakeasy will not go ahead. Unfortunately, there was not enough interest from authors to sustain a full anthology.

Finally! A good day!

Willow
What a difference a couple of nights of good sleep and some patience and tender loving care make! By the end of today my neck was very nearly painfree and back to full mobility (i've been trying this thing this week of making sure I get up and walk away from my desk at work every 15 minutes - I'll post about reading I'm doing on being sedentary another day but I think it definitely helped with loosening up my neck). And for the first time all week, I felt like I was able to be me. Most of this week I've struggled - as though I Quantum Leaped into this person and had no idea how the hell she does all the things she does. So many things seemed so hard all week, including my day job, and then today it was like "oh yeah, I totally can do this". It all became manageable again. Sleep helped. Eating properly helped. And maelkann helped me find my way out of the OCD loop I was sliding into. He is very patient and understanding and helps me think my way around problems.


The highlight today was most definitely getting the Above/Below from the printers! Normally I'd take a photo of the book with Benji so instead, here is the open box of the first copies which have since been packaged up for the preorders. maelkann did me up address labels - glad to find they are as fiddly as I had found them but I suspect before long he will have automated a bunch of bits and pieces involved in the "ooh we have a new book" process. He's good like that!

The book will be available at the preorder price of $12 til late tomorrow night. And the ebook version will also be available by late tomorrow night.

Moving slowly

Willow
It's nearly the end of the year and I want to do a whole Year in Perspective thing. Sit down and look at what I actually achieved and all that. But my brain closed for renovations some time last week and I can't make it reboot. Couldn't even figure out how to make a coffee about an hour ago in the kitchen. Working on TPP has grounded to a halt and I keep asking aloud whether I should be using the time to get ahead on the 12 Planets, mostly, or whether it's ok to just take the 4 days off. Since I don't much feel like working. Today it's going to be 40degrees. I really do just wanna sit in the quiet and sew.

Still, no matter what, TPP moves onwards. Yesterday Galactic Suburbia participated in a Mega Aussie podcast with crew from the Coode St Podcast, Bad Film Diaries and The Writer and the Critic. We sat around and reflected on 2010, its highlights and what we're all looking forward to in 2011. The podcast is available at Coode St Podcast.

And just in time for Xmas, Amanda finished the very shiny new eBooks for Sprawl, Bleed and The Company Articles of Edward Teach/The Angaelien Apocalypse. She spent a very long time learning all the ins and outs of ebookings and we now have them, and Horn, and in January we will have Above/Below, available for purchase in the Twelfth Planet Press E-Book Store in epub and mobi formats. They will also be available soon at Smashwords if that's your preference. And it's the plan to also release The Twelve Planets in ebook versions too. We'll have an ebook subscription soon.

I want to thank everyone for their support this year - thanks for buying the books, promoting the press, to all the people who help out behind the scenes and those who supported me along the way through the ups and downs. 2010 was a full on year but I think in all, I enjoyed it, for the most part.



TPP Updates

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We have so much going on at Twelfth Planet Press before we take a break over the holidays (all 4 days of them!)

We have a Silly Season Sale going on with a bunch of special bundles on offer as well as a 12 Days Before Xmas Sale which started yesterday and has a different daily special. Today's til Wednesday night is a very good deal on A Book of Endings. All those are over at the Web Store.

We also have finally gotten ourselves into gear and set up a newsletter - it'll be a joint newsletter with FableCroft and will come out once every two months featuring all our latest news, sales and new and upcoming books. Those who sign up this week, go into a prize draw to win one of 4 copies of Edward Teach/Angaelien Apocalypse and upcoming Above/Below. And get a 10% discount on any TPP or FableCroft books bought before December 24th (except for the 12 Days Before Xmas Sales). You can sign up for that here

Yesterday, mondy gave a lovely review of The Company Articles of Edward Teach and The Angaelien Apocalypse here:

Of Edward Teach he says:

Obviously as a young, handsome Jewish man myself I'm drawn to stories that deal with my faith. But more then that, I loved the idea of having that juxtaposition between Islam and Judaism. At the orthodox end of the scale, both are restrictive and patriarchal faiths and both have a tendency to push their children down a certain prescribed path. I was really interested to see how this played out in the novella.
...

And of The Angaelien Apocalypse:

I'm going to do all of you a favour and not say anything at all about the actual plot of this gonzo novella. Part of the joy is putting your trust in Matthew and expecting that he knows where he's going. Yes, there are moments when you think there's no way your willing suspension of disbelief is going to survive the next sentence. Yet somehow he just about keeps it all together.

What I will say is that behind the jokes - of which there are some - and the satire - of which there's quite a bit - there's some really intelligent writing going on here. Not only in the way that Matthew plays with the major tenets of Christianity, but also in what he has to say about the concept of revelation and how sometimes we are all too easily swayed by the shiny lights and the need to believe in something. In some ways, this is a deeply cynical novella in what it has to say about faith. But in other ways, in the way it explores the idea of friendship and love, it provides a very hopeful message, without ever being mawkish.


He says more - check out the rest of his review.

And finally, a lovely picture of me and also of other good small press folk at Worldcon


And in publishing news ...

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Today I saw the first concepts for the cover of Nightsiders. I love watching Amanda work. I think I'm starting to love watching the design side of things as much as I love watching writing come together. It's fascinating to watch things develop and to provide feedback and see what the artist/writer does with that.

And then I took a step back and realised that we are now working at a pretty full schedule. We're working on the final edits and some proofing already for Nightsiders. Last week The Company Articles of Edward Teach/The Angaelien Apocalypse came back from the printers, stacked in all its boxes and ready for sale. And yesterday Above/Below was delivered to the printers and should mean we see proofs for it before Christmas.
Above/Below is now available for preorder at a special price of $12 plus postage So much activity!

As well as that, Helen Merrick has come to join us at Twelfth Planet Press, which is really rather exciting and extremely cool. She and Tehani Wessely have taken titles of Associate Editors. And Helen is working on a cool little side project related to the Twelve Planets - to be revealed later.

The year really is racing away, isn't it?


Happy BOOK Day!

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It's almost a little surreal - Amanda and I have been finalising the next book to go to the printer and Sue and I have been working on the collection to go to the printer after that and today The Company Articles of Edward Teach/The Angaelian Apocalypse arrived!

Here's a close up of the book, with cute puppy for scale:


I love the day the books arrive. There's really nothing quite like it - all major tasks should be punctuated with a big delivery of boxes when you finish them. There's nothing quite like drawing a line under a project by ripping open the first box to take a look. I love seeing for myself the idea that was a project, one that maybe I worked on with several people for over a year ,come to life as a physical object in my hand. But then - I really love the book as a physical object.

So here it is. Finally! Edward Teach/Apocalypse - as I am calling it for short. In some ways I feel like it's been overshadowed by other projects which is a shame. I really am proud of this book. It's the second in the doubles series, thus making the series a ... series. It's the first of our books to go to the paperback size. And it's a book that we worked on - Thoraiya and I and Matt and I - for I guess a year or more now. It feels great to see it finished.

Thoraiya was supposed to be writing her story for Sprawl when she sent me this novelette. She asked me to read it for an opinion - she thought it might be too offensive to submit anywhere. That immediately piqued my interest. I took it to Conflux with me to read and sat down one day at breakfast and inhaled it. As I began to read I got goosebumps (I buy anything that gives me goosebumps) because here was someone who knew what it was like to be me. What it was like to grow up in Australia and be culturally different. She nailed it. There's a little bit of me in Layla and a little bit of me in Avi. And I LOVE that - because I think that means that maybe there is more that is the same about being different than ... maybe being the same? I see this very much as a YA story - but a mature (language wise) YA story. These characters are struggling with the issues I struggled with at their age - at 15 and 16 and heck even maybe 19 and 20. They struggle with who they are and who they want to be whilst also struggling with the pressure of being who other people want and expect them to be. Oh yeah, and there's pirates. But you know, I'm not that into pirates ...

I was looking for something to pair with this story when Matt asked me to read what he thought might be the beginning of a novella. He sent me 10k and I was interested, very interested, if there was more - like the other half. He went away and wrote what turned out to be the other 2/3rds, I believe. I liked this story because it is completely different to Edward Teach and actually kinda different to anything else I've published before. I like that because I think I am still establishing what Twelfth Planet Press is and it's broader than the sum of what I have published to date. The Angaelian Apocalypse is tongue in cheek, irreverent and playful. And also a fun ride. Chrulew is an underrated writer and I'm hoping to see more of his work in the future. He writes with such ease and so playfully that his work is a pleasure to read, even when, maybe, none of the characters are that likeable.

And now I am off to package up all the preorders to post first thing tomorrow! Happy day! 


I have been remiss

12PPpink
I am catching up on all things, and here are a few reviews and whatnot I haven't posted about yet.

Kate Elliott wrote a lovely review of Glitter Rose recently:

The collection has lovely writing, first of all, and a nuanced and mature sense of characterization, by which I mean that people have mixed and ambivalent motives and aren't all one thing or another, and the journey the narrator makes through the four stories is complex and felt, to me, true to the human condition. It also has a strong sense of place, and I am picky about sense of place. It is clear to me that the author knows and understands her landscape and how landscape flows through and changes people.



And of the book, itself, she said:

Twelfth Planet Press has produced a simply excellent book as a physical object. It's nice to hold and nice to look at and nice to read as pure physical considerations. This is something small presses can do very well indeed, and TPP has done it.

Glitter Rose is currently on sale for $32 (for p+H to Australia) as part of the Twelfth Planet Press Silly Season Sale, with no frills attached postage.

TPP also has a really lovely half page spread in Scoop magazine this month, featuring a review of Glitter Rose and a short interview with me. Of Glitter Rose, Scoop magazine says:

This collection of short stories paints an evocative picture of a strange new environment, against which the corruptions and frailties of its characters are laid bare.


Finally, I had time this week to set up the Twelfth Planet Press E-book Store at the website. I've been wanting to have a separate section for just our E-books for a while now and was hoping to set it up with the next round of electronic titles we're about to release. But a lot of people have started asking where our E-books are, or thinking that small press in Australia doesn't do E-books. We've had titles at Smashwords for almost two years now, I think. But I have now collected what we do have all in one place. Come back after Xmas to check out some other specials in our electronic range which we should have available by then.


Freecon, Sydney

Willow
I did a bit of a plug on Twitter yesterday and was going to tell you today that if you're in Sydney you could head down to the Bankstown City Library and check out Matthew Chrulew and Thoraiya Dyer who are both out and about promoting their new Twelfth Planet Press book - The Company Articles of Edward Teach/The Angaelian Apocalypse.

In Garry Dalrymple's "Nearly Live from Freecon" email he informs that they both read excerpts tonight:

Matt Chrulew, read from his story about Alien visitation / Religious End times and how these events brought changes to the lives and outlooks of a formerly tight group of twenties something friends who find themselves at the sharp edge of changes to their world.

Thoraiya Dyer read from her story, which she had considered to be ‘Adult’ due to it’s content, but which is being promoted as ‘YA’. In this story a boy and a girl find themselves transposed into the bodies and living the lives of real pirates, as a consequence of a costume party dress up.     Each is resisting taking the path parents have laid out for them, and the reluctant med student is brought face to face with ‘good old days’ disease and the reluctant law student is brought to view the excesses and cruelties of an entirely lawless society.



I think they're going to be round for the rest of the weekend though if you are heading down over the weekend.


And I should say that yes, Thoraiya's story has some VERY racy content in it but I don't think that moves into Adult rating. But others may disagree.


Coming soon from Twelfth Planet Press!

12PPpink
Twelve Planets

12 collections, 12 authors, 12 months

Twelfth Planet Press announces the first collection in the Twelve Planets series to be released in January, 2011.

Nightsiders

by Sue Isle

In a future world of extreme climate change, Western Australia's capital city, Perth, has been abandoned. Most of the state's citizens were evacuated to the East by the late '30s and organised infrastructure and services have gone. A few thousand obstinate and independent souls cling to the city and to the southern towns where, living mostly by night to endure the fierce temperatures, they are creating a new culture in defiance of official expectations. A teenage girl stolen from her family as a child; a troupe of street actors who affect their new culture with memories of the old; a boy born into the wrong body; and a teacher who is pushed into the role of guide tell the story of The Nightside.

Nightsiders comprises four stories: The Painted Girl, Nation of the Night, Paper Dragons and The Schoolteacher's Tale


Above/Below

by Stephanie Campisi/Ben Peek




Cover by Amanda Rainey

A city has fallen from the sky.

In the wreckage, two men - Devian Lell, a window cleaner in the floating cities of Loft, and Eli Kurran, a security guard in one of the polluted, ground-based cities of Dirt - will find their lives changed.

Devian, who has done what few in the floating landscape have by stepping outside the sanctuary of his home, will be drawn into the politics of Loft, as he is recruited to be the assistant for Dirt’s political representative. On the ground, Kurran, still mourning the death of his wife, tries to remove himself from the violent politics of Dirt even as he is blackmailed into providing security for the diplomatic representative of Loft, a woman three times his age, and the oldest living person he has ever met.

A tale of two cities, the stories Above and Below make up two halves of another in the TPP Doubles series. Written by Stephanie Campisi and Ben Peek, designed to be self-contained and complete as individual narratives, the two parts can be read in either order, yet also form a single narrative that has been intricately woven and designed to create a single, novel length story. It is a work that suggests not a single way of reading, but rather two, with conflicting morals that will continue to test the reader’s certainty in who, in the cities of Loft and Dirt, is in the right.


Twelfth Planet Press Silly Season Sale!

shiny&chocolate
We've started our Silly Season Sale over at the Twelfth Planet Press Web Store.

Whether you're looking for a Secret Santa or a Stocking Stuffer or a gorgeous gift book, we've got you covered!


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