I recently appeared at the NSW Writers Centre speculative fiction festival and sat on a panel—the Future of Publishing. I was honoured to be able to represent self-published authors. My co-panelists were Joel Naoum from Momentum Publishing and Zoe Walton from Random House. It was an informative discussion and anyone interesting in self-publishing or just becoming a published author, should take a look. I’m the clever one on the right (your right ;)). Click on the photo for a link to one of the discussions and here for a short video with me saying something that was probably very important ;).
Here I am with some exciting news! Before I tell you I’ll explain why my posts have been few and far between lately: I’m drowning in a champagne glass full of editing work, writing, and flitting about festivals. The sides of my self-imposed glass are tall and impossible to climb out of since they slope inwards, although I’m enjoying the invigorating bubbles (I’m hoping you can picture my imagery; if not you’ll be sitting there thinking this woman is crazy and I have no freakin’ idea what the hell she’s talking about.)
Did you like the suspense? Now that I’ve annoyed you long enough, I’ll get to the point. My exciting news is (da na na na na): I sat on my first writers festival panel on the weekend, and I didn’t get heckled, not even once! I attended the NSW Writers Centre Speculative Fiction festival and spoke on the publishing panel. I, of course, represented self-publishing. I was nervous at first, although the amazing and super-nice Kate Forsyth did her best to make me feel confident (thank you Kate, it worked).
Surprisingly, I managed to answer the questions like I knew what I was talking about, and the crowd was generous enough to pretend they didn’t notice I was pretending to know what I was doing; I in turn pretended they weren’t pretending not to notice my pretending—I’m sure you’ll agree, we all did a great job! The pretending was so out of hand at one stage, that members of the audience were tweeting quotes from me. Ha! I’m quotable. Who would’ve thought (not me, that’s for sure). I heard these tweeters were paid in slabs of rocky road but we’ll pretend they did it because I’m fabulous ;).
There were other great panels on the day, and I listened enthralled as Kate Forsyth, Ian Irvine, Juliette Marillier and Garth Nix (who, by the way, should be in country music with a name like that), among others, chatted about subjects ranging from writing fantasy, to e-books, their publishing journeys, to fairytale retelling. It was a fantastic festival and I would highly recommend it to anyone who writes or reads speculative fiction. I am also happy that I got to represent self-publishing. I’ve discovered that I enjoy being an advocate for professional self-publishing.
It was also awesome because after the festival I caught up with some writer friends (a couple of whom I’d only met online). We had a cheap pub dinner and held an impromptu writers group meeting. We read each others’ work while people around us got pissed. Ah, the life of a creative.
I have to go now, because other than the fact that you’re probably becoming bored (stop nodding), I have to clear these champagne bubbles out of my nose and finish the first draft to A Time of Darkness, the Shadows of the Realm sequel, so it can fly off to the editors on Tuesday. I’m so excited and will post an update next week. Cheers!
My continuing run of good luck, as foretold by the birds pooing on my car (it’s my new predictor of how my life is going to go) has led to one of the most exciting things I’ve done as an author.
I received a message from one of Australia’s best-loved and most successful fantasy (including adult, teen and children’s books) authors, Kate Forsyth. Kate, who is the organiser of the festival, asked if I would like to sit on a panel at the upcoming NSW Writers Centre speculative fiction festival. I was laughing and crying at the same time, I think because Kate, in all her modesty, informed me she was “an author just like you.” Um excuse me? First of all, no introduction needed as I have The Witches of Eileanan series on my bookshelf and ‘just like you’ I think not. I’m a baby at this and Kate has published around twenty five novels, some of them prize-winning and I’m sure all of them best-selling (thank you so much Kate).
I’m going to be sitting on a publishing panel and answering questions about my experiences with self-publishing. I’m nervous of course, but I’ve already been informed that a few of my interstate friends are coming up to support me and enjoy the day, as there are many awesome talks to sit in on by great Aussie authors. I’m super excited and thankful as these opportunities don’t arise often (if at all).
So, aspiring Australian writers, get along to the NSW Writers Centre at Balmain for what is going to be an exciting day (have I already said it’s going to be exciting?). Tickets are a bargain at $80! Go to the site, check out the program and book now before everyone else beats you to it. I hope to see you all there.