October 3rd, 2010


Perth Royal Show

Yesterday, maelkann and I went to the Royal Show. It's the first time I've been since I guess my Dad used to take me when I was a kid. We used to go at night, miss all the pavilions and just do the showbags, sideshow alley and the fireworks. It was like the one time in the year I was allowed to have hot cinnamon doughnuts for dinner.

When I used to go, I'd save up my pocket money for some bags and to play some games and my Dad would pay for entry, dinner, a showbag allowance (he says it used to be 3 bags but I reckon he went up to 6 some times) and a ride. So I figured, I'd give myself a showbag allowance again this time. And I was still umming and ahhing about that when I woke up yesterday and C tweets me with "Don't worry, I've worked out the 3 showbags we're getting." and I was all, "Hey! Noone tells me what to do!" And it seriously never occurred to me that my boyfriend might love me and know exactly what I might like and had spent time figuring that out cause he likes to make me happy. That's leftover crap from the ex.

Course this was actually the truth as C responded with: "Oh, you don't want me to get us the $125 chocolate showbag"
*GJ whining screeches to a stop*
GJ: "wait what?"

Yes , my lovely boyfriend had budgetted this showbag:

It was kept in a locked cupboard which the lady had to access with a key when we went to buy it! 3.5kg of chocolate dreams! For sharing. On rationing.

I didn't know that at the time though and every other showbag kinda didn't look as impressive after that and C kept asking, "do you really need more chocolate?" which now I realise the answer was YES but at the time was no. I got a licorice showbag and a random thing for my Mum in the exhibition pavilion.

C got the IGA bag which you made up yourself by stopping at checkpoints throughout the show, presenting your passport and getting a stamp and the showbag item. It was kinda cool. I got to have the strawberry dipped in chocolate!

Other than that, we went through all the show pavilions and looked at craft and produce and animals and this was the first bull I think I've ever seen up close and personal:

I had such a great time! But gosh, 2 hours of wandering around were more than enough for me.


Buffy Season 6

It only occurred to me yesterday that Willow is the Big Bad of Season 6. I'm sure I knew that the last time I watched this season but my memory of it has been the Trio, or really Warren, as the Big Bad and Willow defeating him, with the magic she used taking her over the edge and Xander pulling her back. Which is of course, not true. We watch all season long as Willow is seduced further and deeper into the dark side til it consumes her. She loses everything really, including herself. And one of the most moving moments is when Xander refuses to stop loving her no matter what, and ultimately, his love saves the world. I was in tears.

There's lots in this season, most of which I've touched on in previous posts. I really enjoyed the parent/child relationships in this season. In some ways, Giles was more the parental figure for both Buffy and the others than in any other season to date. And yet they are all older than they've been before. When he comes back to bring Willow down, there's the moving scene of Buffy running to hug him and then Anya wanting a hug too. It really is a very kid/dad moment.

In contrast, there are also lovely scenes throughout the season of the shared parental responsibility for Dawn. After Buffy dies, Willow and Tara move in and take the role on fulltime. And then after Tara moves out, she still fills the role of shared custody parent, taking Dawn out, making sure there is supervision, and stepping in when Willow and Buffy are not cutting it. And I really liked the added dimension of Buffy confessing all to Tara and thus them having a bond of friendship outside of Willow. It made Tara's death so much more poignant. Tara had a really beautiful character arc, I thought.

And I love the moment where even after everything, Buffy is still going to leave Dawn with Spike when she goes off to fight Willow and ends up leaving her with that random demon who is crpyt sitting for Spike. It's like ... this is Buffy's life, so embedded in the demon world that she'll let one babysit her sister. It's so bizarre and surreal.

Spike. What's to say? I had been enjoying his romantic lead. I really did see him as Buffy's Boyfriend - he certainly filled the role. Even if she didn't love him. And that made it so interesting - that Buffy is such a White Hat that she can't cope with the idea of sleeping someone only for physical gratification. Can't cope with using someone for comfort and not being able to return that. When she begs Tara to not forgive her, it's so moving because she is so trapped in being the ultimate hero. She can't even sabotage that, even if she actively tries. But maybe she just can't physically do that anyway - her confrontation with Willow, "Slayers don't kill people." A lesson she learned long ago from Faith and would never ever cross the line herself. She lives and fights and slays within the rules. And her big bad act is sleeping with someone she doesn't love.

I don't ever really know what to do with the rape scene. I still don't.

And Xander. Oh Xander! So upsetting when he breaks Anya's heart. I really loved the role that Anya played in the group - the way she would fight for Xander and how often that meant she would fight for them. She was so lovely looking after Dawn. And she was so happy in love. And then, it's gone, in a moment of cold feet for Xander.

Good season, all up. Dark. Heartwrenching and heavy going and not really the season I turn to for comfort TV. But a great season.


Last Short Story and Twelfth Planet Press happenings

If you listened to the latest Galactic Suburbia podcast already you'll have heard me say how I haven't been joining the others on the massive readathon for Last Short Story 2010 and I don't feel guilty about it. I don't. I am so deluged by other reading right now and so behind on things that I couldn't in good mind give LSS my attention, not at the expense of Twelfth Planet Press. I have two books still to put out in 2010, I'm off to World Fantasy Con in just over 2 weeks and I have 3 short story collections to get off to the printers to be read for January 2011. You know, as well as working on the other books for 2011, including our first novel, judging for the Aurealis Awards and chairing um, the National SF convention.

So, yeah, LSS. I just can't give it my all. And I feel a little bit sorry that that means I won't be up on the reading for when all the awards lists start to come out. I like being on top of the reading in order to be part of the discussion. So I think what I'm going to do is read all the stories in the spreadsheet that have a 5 by someone. Or at least a couple of 4s and a 4.5. It means I won't be finding my own gems this year and I won't be influencing the outcome for LSS other than to maybe reinforce some and edge out others when we do averages. But I think I'm ok with that in that that's the best I can do this year.

The publishing new year has kinda already come and we have already started receiving material for 2011. I could in theory start over pretty soon and instead be up to speed in 2011. Especially since I've got a bunch of travel coming up and will need reading for that. Sometimes you gotta just draw a line under it.


Latest Twelfth Planet Press Novelette Double

Here are the covers for the next Twelfth Planet Press Double - The Company Articles of Edward Teach by Thoraiya Dyer and The Angaelian Apocalypse by Matthew Chrulew. The cover art is by Dion Hamill and the design by Amanda Rainey.

The book should be out in a month or so and, well, it's a pirate story back to back with an alien invasion with a twist.

The Company Articles of Edward Teach
- Learning to live inside your own skin is hard enough, but what if you were thrown back in time, to another body; a different world…?

I was dead and now I’m alive, a stolen soul from a different world, but there seems to be another mind sharing the body with me and I really don’t want to go mad.

The body of Blackbeard the pirate surfaces beside me, bleeding, and I want to laugh. I’ve been sent back three centuries. The clash between my two sets of memories makes me want to throw up. All the safety I took for granted is gone.

The Angaelian Apocalypse - An alien story you've never seen before ...

Reports had come in as the revolution erupted: a myriad of rotating discs approached Earth at speed. Panic and joy spread around the planet in viral waves. Few needed any help to identify these flying objects. They were the angælic vehicles.

And at the helm of the lead saucer was the Man himself. Jesus Christ.