***insert gross sneezing noises***
Oh, hello there. Don’t mind me, I’m just plague-ridden and exhausted. You know, when I was younger (and not that much younger either) I’d use the Easter weekend as a chance to party as hard as I possibly could and hit up a string of raves, festivals, house parties and BBQs before collapsing on Monday and sleeping for 20 hours.
Now, at age 41, I’ve spent the four-day weekend writing, cleaning and sniffling. Goodbye, rock and roll.
But hey, I’m getting stuff done, which is good. The Obituarist continues apace and I’m on target to finish this draft by next weekend, at which point it goes out to the editor and for feedback from my readers. Plus I have a line on a designer to approach regarding the cover, which I’ll do during the review/editing window. All of which makes me feel super-organised and not at all like a shut-in drinking bad coffee and wearing trackpants all day.
I’ve also been out to some Comedy Festival shows; you can see my reviews of Tessa Waters, Dingo & Wolf and Daniel Burt on The Pun, along with reviews of many other shows. I also saw Damian Callinan, who was terrific, and would recommend The Peer Revue except that it’s already finished its run.
I don’t have much else to talk about at the moment, but rather than cut things short right there, I wanted to drop a few links to other blogs, events and postings that are worth your time and eyeballs.
- Cat Valente posted this amazing essay about reactions to Christopher Priest’s criticism of this year’s Clarke Award nominees and how different (and loathsome) those reactions might have been if a woman had written the exact same thing. It’s a fantastic post that uses a lot of genuine examples of the negative reactions women draw just from being female on the Internet, so naturally a bunch of the comments are that she’s wrong and that never happens and men have it just as hard and YOUR ARGUMENT IS INVALID ‘COS BITCHES AIN’T SHIT and so forth. But not that many of the comments, thankfully. Anyway, it’s a really strong piece and I think it’s worth reading and considering even if you disagree with her premise or conclusions.
- Kirstyn McDermott has written a piece in partial response to Cat Valente’s essay that is also well worth a read, where she talks about her own experiences of feminism and internet responses to women with opinions.
- And speaking of blogging about feminism and writing, Foz Meadows continues to impress with her essays, including this pair about default narrative sexism in fantasy worlds and how that then interacts with sexism within wider geek circles.
- Former Queenslander Jason Nahrung vents some spleen over the axing of the QLD Premier’s Literary Awards – not the worst thing Campbell Newman will probably do to my former home, but certainly one a lot of writers find immediately upsetting. Jason also has some good news, though, in that a group of writers, booksellers and artslovers are trying to get an alternative set of awards up and running – more info here.
- Like many others, Jay Kristoff saw The Hunger Games recently (I haven’t, but I’ve got to be different), and he has some thoughts on the rating it received and how we look at sex and violence in stories for/about teenagers. Jay also thinks a lot about steampunk – not surprising, given the nature of his soon-to-be-released novel Stormdancer – and has put down some interesting thoughts about the evolution of the subgenre over at the blog Steamed.
- Alan Baxter is also talking about The Hunger Games (jeez, I’m really falling behind here), in this case the novel and what he sees as flaws in both the story and the way some adults think about YA fiction. Alan also has a new e-novella out called The Darkest Shade of Grey, which you should all investigate and perhaps buy for the low price of $1.99.
- And another thing Alan is involved with is Thirteen O’Clock, a new collaborative blog about horror news and reviews. He and fellow editors/writers Felicity Dowker and Andrew McKiernan are doing their best to cover a lot of new and independent books and projects, from both Australia and overseas, and if you’re interested in horror fiction it’s well worth a look.
- News out this week is a set of Gallup survey stats showing that people are actually reading far more now – and reading more books at that – than they did 25 or 50 years ago. Which gives me hope.
- And in closing, Text From Dog wins the entire Internet.
Alright, that’s enough out of me for the night. Next update should hopefully just say FINISHED in eleventy-hundred-point type above a picture of a coffin.