Damian Magee is, quite simply, one of the loveliest people alive. A gentle librarian with glasses and a moustache that would send Professor Challenger into fits of envy, his softly-spoken demeanour, air of general gentility and love of all things Sherlockian seem almost old-worldly when surrounded by the gauche flashiness of much of science fiction fandom, wherein he spends most of his off hours.
Here, as befits his bibliophilic stature, he gives us not one Precious Literary possession, but a quartet.
Precious Things: Damian Magee
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One of the most delightful moments of parenting comes when a child independently discovers something that has given you joy for years, and begins to express their own joy.
I first discovered The Beatles in a big way when my mother started dating the man who would become her 3rd husband. I was fourteen, and just beginning to branch out from my parents’ taste in music. Mum was early-Beatles: she hated what they did after they became “stupid hippies”. Ray was just as conservative, but for reasons I never figured out, had a copy of The White Album amongst the Jose Carreras and London Symphony Orchestra. For other reasons I never figured out– he openly refused to move in with Mum until we were out of the house because he didn’t want to be bothered with us– he gave me free reign of his record collection. And I went nuts for this album. Nuts, I tells ya. And my life-long love for The Beatles (and yeah, I’m Team Stupid Hippies) was born.
Continue reading “FIVE for FRIDAY: Ms. 15s LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND”
The Asian Festival of Children’s Content approacheth, and here’s my itinerary for what Luscious continues to mockingly call my ‘Singapore holiday’.
16 May, 7pm – 9pm
Opening Ceremony and Award Presentation
17 May, 4.45pm – 6pm
First Pages: Writing Critique
Lee Battersby, Susan Long, Cynthea Liu, Kathleen Ahrens
17 May, 7pm – 9pm
Celebrating Our Stars
18 May, 9am – 10am
Not So Happily Ever After: Strange and Spooky Tales
Lee Battersby, Heidi Shamsuddin, Marc Checkley
18 May, 3.15pm – 4.15pm
Authors Debate: Who Writes Better Books– Introverts or Extroverts?
Cynthea Liu, Don Bosco, Lee Battersby, Angela Cerrito, Nury Vittachi
18 May, 6.30pm – 7.30pm
Children’s Literature Lecture: Books from the Island of Story Tellers
19 May, 7pm – 9pm
20 May, 10am – 6pm
MASTERCLASS: Writing the Weird with Lee Battersby
I make this my solid vow: if I ever get back to University, I will sneak in to the library and do this.
Magrit is beautifully written, succinct, tender and, at times, desperate and disturbing. It manages to combine the dream logic of Flann O’Brien’s The Third Policeman with the otherworldliness of The Twilight Zone. Constantly inventive and suspenseful, Magrit is a book that stays with the reader long after it has been finished.
Fresh of the back of not winning the Aurealis and CBCA Book of the Year Awards for Magrit comes news of one more Award shortlisting, and this time it’s a beauty: the little book that almost could has been shortlisted for the Patricia Wrightson Prize for Children’s Literature as part of the 2017 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards.
The Prize, which attracts an award for (wait for it) THIRTY THOUSAND FREAKING DOLLARS, will be announced on 22 May, when I’ll be lying in bed exhausted after running myself to death for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content, so, you know, it might be pretty flipping good weekend, as weekends go……
For the full skinny, including the list of all shortlisted works across 11 categories, you can head over to the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards page.
Lee Murray is a six-time winner of New Zealand’s Sir Julius Vogel Award for science fiction, fantasy and horror writing. She’s the author of monster thriller Into the Mist (Cohesion Press), and co-author (with Dan Rabarts) of the speculative crime-noir series The Path of Ra, releasing in 2017 from Raw Dog Screaming Press. She lives online at her website, and you can also catch up with her on Facebook and Twitter.
Precious Things: Lee Murray
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Happy International Book Crossing Day, everyone!
What’s Book Crossing day, I hear you ask? Well, sit your jimmy-jammied little bot-bots down, and I’ll tell you. Are you sitting comfortably? Good. Then I’ll begin.
Book Crossing is a fun little website wherein you can release books into the wild, tagged with a barcode, and watch them as they are shared across the known world by people who are prepared to let them go once they’ve finished reading and go onto the website to log the wheres and the whens of the controlled release program. Think of it like tagging sharks for scientific purposes, without the wet and the cold and the seasickness and the risk of getting your bollocks gnawed off. Assuming you don’t try to release the book in Mirrabooka, anyway. There’s a whole lot to learn at the Book Crossing website, including the fact that they have a Day, and it’s today!
So to celebrate, I’m releasing five books into the wild today, and these are they, along with the links to their Book Crossing records so you can watch them disappear into obscurity along with the rest of us.
Five for Friday: Books Away!
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