Honourable mentions by Ellen Datlow

best horror of the year volume 5 edited by ellen datlowEditor extraordinaire Ellen Datlow has released the LOOOOONG list — and it’s true to label, appearing in two pieces (Alexandra to Johnstone, Jones to Yolen) on her blog — to go with the short list of honourable mentions of short stories from 2012, anchored by her Best Horror of the Year Volume 5. The short list appears in the book; the long list doesn’t. Despite the collapse and sale of publisher Night Shade, the book’s listed as available on Amazon.

So why am I mentioning this? Because Datlow has seen fit to list three of my yarns in the long list — ‘The Kiss’ from Tales from the Bell Club, ‘Last Boat to Eden’ from Surviving the End, and ‘Breaking the Wire’, from Aurealis #47 — and ‘Eden’ made it through to the short list.

There is a whole posse of Aussie talent in the lists, and stories by Margo Lanagan and Terry Dowling made it into the collection.

To get a pat on the back from anyone is always a warm and fuzzy moment; to get it from someone with Datlow’s pedigree, and knowing just how widely she reads to compile these lists, well, that’s very nice indeed.

It’s especially cool to see ‘The Kiss’ get a mention: writing in the voice of a turn-of-the-last century Austrian suffragette was quite fun, and one of the first yarns I’ve written involving historical figures. If you go to the link above, you can read the little sucker in the ‘look inside’ feature!

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Ticonderoga’s recommended reading list: we have squee!

years best fantasy and horror 2012Just a wee note to say, yay, ‘Mornington Ride’ from Epilogue and ‘Breaking the Wire’ from Aurealis #47 have been included in the recommended reading list from Ticonderoga Publications’ forthcoming Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror 2012. ‘Last Boat to Eden’, from Surviving the End, is included in the volume (I blogged the full contents of this packed volume here). My ego aside, it’s a good place to start if you’re looking to take the pulse of short Aussie dark fiction. The book is available for pre-order.

The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror Vol 3

years best fantasy and horror 2012Ticonderoga Publications has released the table of contents for The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror Vol 3 (2012), edited by Liz Grzyb and Talie Helene, and I’m stoked to say that my ‘The Last Boat to Eden’, published in the recent Shadows award-winning Surviving the End, has been included.

The ‘best of’ series is a wonderful snapshot of Aussie horror and fantasy. It is due to arrive in July, and is available for pre-order.


The contents are:

  • Joanne Anderton, ‘Tied To The Waste’, Tales Of Talisman
  • R.J.Astruc, ‘The Cook of Pearl House, A Malay Sailor by the Name of Maurice’, Dark Edifice 2
  • Lee Battersby, ‘Comfort Ghost’, Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine 56
  • Alan Baxter, ‘Tiny Lives’, Daily Science Fiction
  • Jenny Blackford, ‘A Moveable Feast’, Bloodstones
  • Eddy Burger, ‘The Witch’s Wardrobe’, Dark Edifice 3
  • Isobelle Carmody, ‘The Stone Witch’, Under My Hat
  • Jay Caselberg, ‘Beautiful’, The Washington Pastime
  • Stephen Dedman, ‘The Fall’, Exotic Gothic 4
  • Felicity Dowker, ‘To Wish On A Clockwork Heart’, Bread And Circuses
  • Terry Dowling, ‘Nightside Eye’, Cemetery Dance #66
  • Tom Dullemond, ‘Population Management’, Danse Macabre
  • Thoraiya Dyer, ‘Sleeping Beauty’, Epilogue
  • Will Elliot, ‘Hungry Man’, The One That Got Away
  • Jason Fischer, ‘Pigroot Flat’, Midnight Echo 8
  • Dirk Flinthart, ‘The Bull In Winter’, Bloodstones
  • Lisa L. Hannett, ‘Sweet Subtleties’, Clarkesworld
  • Lisa L. Hannett & Angela Slatter, ‘Bella Beaufort Goes To War’, Midnight And Moonshine
  • Narrelle Harris, ‘Stalemate’, Showtime
  • Kathleen Jennings, ‘Kindling’, Light Touch Paper, Stand Clear
  • Gary Kemble, ‘Saturday Night at the Milkbar’, Midnight Echo 7
  • Margo Lanagan, ‘Crow And Caper, Caper And Crow’, Under My Hat
  • Martin Livings, ‘You Ain’t Heard Nothing Yet’, Living With The Dead
  • Penelope Love, ‘A Small Bad Thing’, Bloodstones
  • Andrew J. McKiernan, ‘Torch Song’, From Stage Door Shadows
  • Karen Maric, ‘Anvil Of The Sun’, Aurealis #54
  • Faith Mudge, ‘Oracle’s Tower’, To Spin A Darker Stair
  • Nicole Murphy, ‘The Black Star Killer’, Damnation And Dames
  • Jason Nahrung, ‘The Last Boat To Eden’, Surviving The End
  • Tansy Rayner Roberts, ‘What Books Survive’, Epilogue
  • Angela Slatter, ‘Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean’, This Is Horror webzine
  • Anna Tambour, ‘The Dog Who Wished He’d Never Heard Of Lovecraft’, Lovecraft Zine
  • Kyla Ward, ‘The Loquacious Cadaver’, The Lion And The Aardvark: Aesop’s Modern Fables
  • Kaaron Warren, ‘River Of Memory’, Zombies Vs. Robots.
  • Surviving the End, Epilogue: such beautiful apocalypses

    I haven’t had time to read the yarns yet — and it would probably be gauche for me to comment on them, given I’m a contributor — but I have to say, Craig Bezant’s Dark Prints Press has done a beautiful job on Surviving the End: an anthology of post-apocalypse stories. Craig’s linked the yarns with his own narrative. It *feels* great and looks great. Aussie small press are certainly rising to the occasion. The anthology is now available in print and e-version — the Jonathan Maberry story is available only in the print edition. (An aside: Mr Maberry is joining Ramsey Campbell and Caitlín R. Kiernan as author guests at next year’s World Horror Convention in that heart of hearts, New Orleans… oooh.)

    Here’s the contributor list:

    ‘Hiatus’ by Michael Bailey
    ‘The Long Ago’ by Amanda J Spedding
    ‘The Last Boat to Eden’ by Jason Nahrung
    ‘Harvest’ by Ashlee Scheuerman
    ‘Unwanted’ by Martin Livings
    ‘The Stuff of Stories’ by Kathryn Hore
    ‘The Failing Flesh’ by Joseph D’Lacey
    ‘The Wind Through the Fence’ by Jonathan Maberry (print edition only)
    With narrative interludes by the ‘Story Keeper’, Craig Bezant


    epilogue - tales of hope after the apocalypseNOT to be outdone is Epilogue, Fablecroft’s anthology of hopeful post-apocalyptic stories which arrived TODAY! Editor Tehani Wessely has presented such a pleasant tactile end to the world with its striking cover and intriguing binary code symbolism.

    Its contents:

    ‘Sleeping Beauty’ by Thoraiya Dyer
    ‘Time and tide’ by Lyn Battersby
    ‘A Memory Trapped in Light’ by Joanne Anderton
    ‘Fireflies’ by Steve Cameron
    ‘The Fletcher Test’ by Dirk Flinthart
    ‘Ghosts’ by Stephanie Gunn
    ‘Sleepers’ by Kaia Landelius
    ‘Solitary’ by Dave Luckett
    ‘Cold Comfort’ by David McDonald
    ‘Mornington Ride’ by Jason Nahrung
    ‘Only the Books Survive’ by Tansy Rayner Roberts
    ‘The Last Good Town’ by Elizabeth Tan


    Epilogue is being given away at Goodreads until 8 June.

    Good stuff while my back was turned

    We’re back, and a wee bit tired as the clock has turned over the 36-hour mark since we got up some morning recently in my beloved New Orleans, and here’s some of the stuff that’s been happening in my absence that’s too good not to share:

    Anywhere But Earth, launching today in Sydney, is all systems go at the online store

    Brisbane’s awesome Sarah Calderwood is interviewed on ABC Radio about her debut solo album! The song she sings in the studio is stunning.

    Beat magazine makes it official: The Tea Party have tested the reunion waters and found it warm enough to take another splash — cool!

    Kyla Ward has launched her solo poetry collection, The Land of Bad Dreams, with aplomb — see the vids! (Okay, this actually happened before we left, but we couldn’t be in Sydney for it, and it looks like it was a hoot of a night.)

    Oh, too: Macabre, an excellent overview of Aussie horror fiction, and Surviving the End, in which I have a story, are both available — the first as e-book showing there’s still some life left in the sadly collapsed Brimstone Press, the latter as a pre-order. Check out more happenings in Aussie horror publishing at From the Pit.

    Looking ahead: for those in Melbourne, wicked Brissie band Tycho Brahe support Psyche at the Espy on November 12 — that’s this Saturday. Sad, I was, to miss their Halloween gig back in Bris.

    And this time, my back wasn’t turned, because I was at World Fantasy Convention to see Alisa Krasnostein receive her press’s achievement trophy. A superb effort!

    I am a judge for the Aurealis Awards. This item is the personal opinion of the writer, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of any judging panel, the judging coordinator or the Aurealis Awards management team.

    Surviving the End

    surviving the end anthologyDark Prints Press has released the table of contents for its Surviving the End anthology, to be launched at the Swancon “Doom Con” in Perth at Easter next year — lovely thematic resonance, there! (Marianne de Pierres is a good choice of guest of honour, given her dystopian outings.) The antho sounds nice and tight, with extra interest thanks to the inclusion of Craig’s between-story interludes and the novella.

    As well as my yarn, ‘The Last Boat to Eden’, there is:

  • Unwanted, by Martin Livings
  • The Long Ago, by Amanda J Spedding
  • Hiatus, by Michael Bailey
  • The Stuff of Stories, by Kathryn Hore
  • Harvest, by Ashlee Scheuerman
  • the novella, The Failing Flesh, by Joseph D’Lacey
  • and narrative interludes by the ‘Story Collector’, Craig Bezant
  • The end is in sight — bring it on!

    Dead Red Heart and More Scary Kisses: books with bite!

    more scary kisses cover

    Here is the cover of More Scary Kisses, Ticonderoga’s anthology of paranormal romance stories due out in April. The table of contents is here.

    And Ticonderoga’s Australian-themed vampire anthology, Dead Red Heart, has had its table of contents announced, and it’s a monster: 32 yarns, more than 130,000 words, due out towards the end of April.

    I hope this means both will hit the shelf in time for Swancon, Perth’s annual spec fic convention which this year is also the national science fiction convention.

    It’s particularly exciting to have a couple of stories coming out this year after such a long hiatus.

    after the rain ebook edition

    There’s also a story of mine, a cyberpunk one just in contrast to the New Orleans hot-and-sweaty of MSK and cane-and-dust vampire action of DRH, in Fablecroft’s forthcoming After the Rain anthology, also due out in time for Swancon. A special e-edition of ATR is available with proceeds going to the Queensland flood appeal. More than $1200 has been raised so far. Awesome!

    For me, after the rain should probably be after the drought, it’s been so long since I’ve written a short story. But last year, after much kicking around and failing to succeed with novel-length manuscripts, my subconscious apparently found a window for some short stuff. Dark Prints Press’s Surviving the End anthology started the ball rolling — that book’s due out in 2012, and I quite like the story of mine in it: a dirty, post-apocalyptic Australian Gulf-country yarn.

    I’m back in drought mode, now, but it sure feels affirming to have been able to dredge out some yarns!