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Topic: fear

Both ways is the only way she wants it: an interview with Maile Meloy

As the title indicates, Both Ways is the Only Way I Want it (Text, May 2010 in Aus, Riverhead US), Maile Meloy’s engaging collection of stories, is about the fear, desire, pleasure, confusion and complications of wanting it both ways and sometimes having it so. It’s like Guido’s dilemma in Fellini’s 8 1/2 – he wants […]

Joel Magarey’s Exposure: A Journey

Exposure: A Journey Joel Magarey Wakefield Press (Australia) 9781862548237 2009 I write this review just moments after finishing the book, and really, I’m aching from it. Joel Magarey has just taken me on an adventure – around the world, through illness and through love. The narrative flows back and forth between periods in the ’80s and ’90s […]


A conversation with the self: ‘Here we go.’ ‘Of course.’ ‘It’s normal, don’t worry’. ‘But this swoop in my chest!’ ‘It’s just anxiety, you’re dizzy, it’s nothing. It’s just a bit windy out.’ ‘But what of this pressure. I have no control. I can’t feel my face. Oh God.’ ‘When you think about it, it […]

Guest review: Lyndon Riggall on Stephen King’s Under the Dome

9780340992579 Hodder 2009 (Aus, US) I sometimes wonder when Stephen King will stop. Having published more than 150 books, it’s hard not to wonder when the ideas will dry up. What’s next Stephen, a killer broom monster? A giant ribbon that wraps itself around its victims and strangles them of life? A giant dome that […]

Crime, ghosts and danger

This song has been the soundtrack to my week. It has moved all its furniture in some already-crammed hallways of my mind and played out on repeat. Particularly the piano solo. And the force of his voice when he sings so roll up and see. And now you get to read about all my schemes and adventuring, […]

The Boy Detective Fails by Joe Meno – a ‘mood’ review

      Punk Planet Books, 9781933354101, 2006 (Aus, US) razor. pillow-kiss. mental patients. interior snowflakes. haunted house memory. failed masked-man. essentially bad or essentially good? the horror of a discovery. pills, lots of them. lonely echoing voices down the phone. vaporized individuals. an office. graveyard shift. mystery. solved/unsolved. missing her. stealing pink. childhood gone. […]

I’m Terribly Afraid I Might Spontaneously Combust

Never have I felt this burning, scorching, bubbling of my insides so intensely before. I have previously likened the process of idea and inspiration for a story as being like a ‘brew’. The ingredients begin to react together inside your mind and pop and spit until it spills over onto the page as a draft. But this time… I […]