It? Is? June?

The passage of time never fails to take me by surprise. So here we are, it’s June, and I’m announcing my next big thing: Mother of Invention: a speculative fiction anthology of diverse, challenging stories about gender and artificial intelligence. I’ll be co-editing this Twelfth Planet Press anthology with Tansy Rayner Roberts. We’ve just launched a Kickstarter to fund the project, so please check out the goodies we have on offer and tell your friends.

In other news, I’m very excited to announce that my Far-North Queensland guerrilla scientist story, “Trivalent”, is forthcoming in Ticonderoga Publications’ Ecopunk anthology. I’m really proud of this story, and I’m in excellent company in this table of contents.

Also from Ticonderoga, my Tasmanian Jewish-ish steampunk “Beyond the Factory Wall” is reprinted in The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror 2015. Available soon.

I’ve also got con adventures aplenty this year. I live-tweeted (of course) GX Australia — my first gaming/pop culture convention. Next, I’ll be at Continuum in Melbourne, where I’ll be on a couple of panels and will be passing the ‘best new talent’ baton at the Ditmar Awards. After that, there’s the NSW Writers’ Centre Speculative Fiction Festival here in Sydney, WorldCon in Helsinki, Conflux (Canberra) if I can manage it, and last but not least, GenreCon in Brisbane.

Ends and beginnings, 2016 edition

Author with awardIn the spirit of recounting the good things that happened to me in this global annus horribilis, here’s my year in review. In (mostly) chronological order…

My writing year kicked off in earnest (I’m sure I wrote stuff before then, but I can’t be sure) in March, when I attended Contact. Held in Brisbane over the Easter long weekend, this was the 55th Australian National Science Fiction Convention and I enjoyed it heartily.

It featured the first Aurealis Awards that I was involved with (as judge for SF short story category) and much live-tweeting by me. I also won a Ditmar Award for Best New Talent, which was surprising and inspiring to my work since. (Except for the part where I dropped my pin on the floor of the stage, but I am at peace with my clumsiness.) To the Australian speculative fiction community, thank you for welcoming me and honouring me.

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There and back again

A quick update after a quiet couple of months (I’m almost finished a few stories, I promise!).

In May I travelled to Madison, Wisconsin for WisCon, a feminist science fiction convention. I met some interesting people, bought more books than I thought I could fit in my suitcase (I was wrong and my suitcase is an enabler), and was enriched by the panels and discussion I attended. Of course, I liveblogged what I could.

Back at home, I was interviewed by the Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild, who are set to release the ebook version of The Never Never Land on the first of July. It’ll be available on Smashwords and elsewhere.

Making Contact

Author with award

Here I am with my first ever award, for Best New Talent in the Ditmar Awards. Photo by me.

Last night I returned home from Contact, the 55th annual Australian speculative fiction convention held in Brisbane.

As I usually do, I had a wonderful time catching up with friends from around the country (and outside of it), learning and live tweeting up a storm (the least terrible of these are immortalised on Storify), and adding to the ever-toppling Mt. TBR.

I was also chuffed to win a Ditmar Award for Best New Talent! Like I said on the night (hopefully coherently, right after I dropped my pin on stage) I very much appreciate the support of my family, the Australian speculative fiction community and specifically my mentor, Cat Sparks.

The state of flux

COSMOS fiction editor, Cat Sparks, launching her book at the Conflux 9 speculative fiction convention with COSMOS reviews editor Rivqa Rafael. Credit: Robert Hood

COSMOS fiction editor, Cat Sparks, launching her book at the Conflux 9 speculative fiction convention with
COSMOS reviews editor Rivqa Rafael. Credit: Robert Hood

This report was originally published on COSMOS Online.

The Australian speculative fiction (an umbrella term for science fiction, fantasy and related genres) community is small but perfectly formed. At Conflux 9, writers, artists, editors, publishers and fans mingled on largely equal footing. It’s Australia’s 52nd such convention, and the ninth in Canberra. Held from 25 to 28 April 2013 with some 270 attendees, it offered insights into the hearts of the genre and its people.  Continue reading