October 10th, 2009


Siren Beat - an introduction

cassiphone is blogging about "Siren Beat" this week. Here's an excerpt:

didn't read Robert Shearman's Roadkill until our shared book had already gone to the printers. My first thought was - oh, I wish I'd read this before I gave Alisa an answer to the question - 'Robert wrote an intro to his story, do you want to do one for yours?' I didn't, because I thought it was best to let the novelette stand alone, leaving any peripheral material for blogging or whatever.

But I read Robert's this week, and it's such a gorgeously personal piece of writing about how he wrote his story, and its relationship to his Australia Swancon trip.

This is my attempt.


[T]houghts of Hobart as a paranormal setting started clicking into gear, and it was the harbour that kept springing to mind. When I think 'Hobart' my brain immediately goes to that stretch of land around the harbour - the old IXL factory where my mother went to art school, the docks, the bars, the old stone buildings around Salamanca Place, the quarry at the back of the new Salamanca Square, the big orange Antarctic ship that dominates the view and the silo buildings at the end. A horseshoe shape of familiar sights, sounds and smells.

It occurred to me that if I was to reinvent Hobart as a paranormal setting, like Laurell K Hamilton reinvented St Louis for hers, then I could take inspiration from the Derwent River and the sea beyond. Instead of vampires and werecreatures, the dark magical threats could come from sirens, kraken, mermaids, kelpies, and any other aspect of water mythology. And suddenly, after half a year of struggling, I couldn't stop writing.

Siren Beat was a guilty pleasure...

Purchase your copy of Roadkill/Siren Beat for $12/$15, depending on postage.


all manner of things

Well I solved the mystery of my latest bout of hives. They settled down into Conflux and a couple of days after Conflux which was odd. Then I remembered to take my Vitamin B and voila! itcharama! Mystery solved. But the world of pain in my mouth says I probably just need to suck it up and antihistamine it for a while.

Today I finally felt like leaving my humble abode. I took myself off shopping - I hardly ever go shopping and it must be years since I just wandered around a centre, browsing by myself. I did have a ton of errands though, on account of not going shopping very often. I had a present to buy, a TV cable to replace and all sorts of bits and pieces to get for Twelfth Planet Press. I own a guillotine now! And I finally addressed one envelope too many and have gotten myself stickers to print TPP addresses on. I also bought a hemp lip balm - the Body Shop handcream is SO good I decided that I'd give the lip balm a go and am already really impressed with it. One application and cracked lips are gone, none of this once you start you have to keep reapplying business with other lip balms. On my way out I bumped into catundra and talmor which was nice. And I might have swung past J B Hifi which was not at all on the way home to pick up Duffy and the first season of Big Love.

I had some dog things to sort out - pick up my parents' dog and take to my house (don't ask) and then I was off to meet jonathanstrahan at Coode St Cafe. We schmoozed on all things publishing. And when I got into my car afterwards I got a text from deborahb to say her book launch had gone really well! Yay! I wish I could have been there. I've seen some photos and it looked very swank.

I am now dedicating myself to my tax and the tumbling block project for the rest of the weekend. I have finally worked through some maths for the piecing of the blocks and have dived in and started on one quarter that has no reds in it! I keep telling myself that I can always unpick it if it looks horrible. But if I let the fear of failure get to me too much, I'll never start this thing. (4 blocks pieced, over 200 to go).