Because I’ve had my head down for a lot of this year I haven’t had much time for posting, but since it’s almost the new year I thought I might pull together some links and news.
The big news for this year was obviously the publication of my first YA novel, The Silent Invasion, which was released in Australia in April. It’s done well so far – it topped the bestseller lists in August and it’s just been longlisted for the Indie Awards (something I’m particularly thrilled about) – which has been great, especially since the second book in the series, The Buried Ark, will be out in April. If you’d like to know more about the series I wrote a piece about the inspiration for it to coincide with the publication of The Silent Invasion.
The other big news was the international publication of Clade by Titan Books in September. It’s had lovely reviews in various places, not least The Guardian and SFX, and I’ve done a number of interviews about it, most significantly for the fabulous Eco-Fiction and the Chicago Review of Books. I also did a long interview about climate change and fiction for Five Books, something that was doubly wonderful because I love the site so much (if you’ve never seen it I urge you to check it out: it’s an extraordinary resource).
I also published The Death of Neutrino Man, a comic I created with artist Melanie Cook from a script I wrote a couple of years ago as part of a project sponsored by iF Book (an experience I wrote about at the time). You can buy it for 99c at Comixology or read it online for free. I’ve got a couple of other comic projects cooking away, so hopefully there will be more soon.
On the non-fiction front I wrote a couple of longer things, most notably a review essay of Jeff Vandermeer’s Borne and a piece about the place of fiction in the Anthropocene, both of which were published on Sydney Review of Books. I also wrote about fish intelligence in The Monthly, which I’m delighted to say was shortlisted for the Bragg Prize for Science Writing and has recently been republished as part of Michael Slezak’s excellent Best Australian Science Writing 2017 (which would make an excellent Christmas present). And just a few weeks ago I published another ocean-themed piece in The Monthly, this time about the kelp forests of Australia’s other reef, the Great Southern Reef. And finally I’ve just written an appreciation of Paul McCartney’s post-Beatles career for The Neighbourhood Paper.
I’ll have more news about future projects, in particular The Buried Ark and my new adult novel in the new year. In the meantime I wish you all a very happy holiday season and all the best for 2018.
Clade is out today in the UK, Ireland, USA and Canada through Titan Books. You can pick up copies at good bricks and mortar bookshops or online.
It’s already had some lovely responses: SFX gave it 4.5 stars and said it was “beautiful, terrifying and – despite everything – uplifting”, and Robert Macfarlane says “Clade is a brilliant, unsettling and timely novel: a true text of the Anthropocene in its subtle shuttlings between lives, epochs and eras, and its knitting together of the planet’s places”.
If you’d like to know more you might want to check out my interview with Ecofiction about it and some of the challenges of writing about climate change.
My thanks to everybody at Titan for making this possible. I’m so pleased the book is going to find new readers.
Here’s me in conversation with the wonderful Iain McCalman (if you haven’t read his marvellous The Reef: A Passionate History it’s brilliant).
I’m thrilled to be able to announce that Clade has been shortlisted for the 2016 Western Australian Premier’s Award for Fiction, alongside books by Miles Allinson, Elizabeth Harrower, Gail Jones, John Kinsella, Joan London, Susan Midalia and Tracy Ryan. The winner is announced on 3 October, but in the meantime the shortlists for all categories are available via the State Library of Western Australia. And on a more personal note I want to say how delighted I am to find myself sharing space on a shortlist with Joan London, a writer I admire enormously. My thanks to the judges and the organisers, and congratulations to all my fellow shortlistees.
I’m delighted to be able to announce that Clade has been nominated for Australia’s oldest literary award, the ALS Gold Medal, which is both completely unexpected and a huge honour. My congratulations to the other shortlisted writers, Tegan Bennett Daylight, Drusilla Modjeska and Brenda Niall – it’s fantastic to be in such distinguished company – and my heartfelt thanks to the judges and the organisers of the prize, the Association for the Study of Australian Literature. The winner is announced on 6 July at the Association’s conference in Canberra.
I’m very excited to say the audio book edition of my Victorian Premier’s, Christina Stead and Aurealis Award-shortlisted novel Clade is now available through Audible in Australia, the UK and internationally. It’s read by Ian Bliss, and features a rather lovely new cover, so if you’ve been holding off reading it perhaps now’s the time to grab a copy.
And if audio books are your thing you might also want to check out the audio editions of The Resurrectionist, read by Stan Pretty (UK only), and Wrack, read by Humphrey Bower (Australia, UK and US).
I’m delighted to be able to say that Clade has been shortlisted for the Christina Stead Award for Fiction at the 2016 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards: it’s a huge honour and I’m absolutely thrilled. The other nominees for the fiction award are Tony Birch’s Ghost River, Merlinda Bobis’ Locust Girl, Lisa Gorton’s The Life of Houses, Gail Jones’ A Guide to Berlin and Mireille Juchau’s The World Without Us, several of which I’ve read and loved, but I do recommend taking a few minutes to check out the shortlists for the other awards as well. The winner will be announced in Sydney on 16 May; in the meantime I note without comment that voting is now open for the People’s Choice Award, and that Clade is one of the eligible titles.