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Guest Post — The Political Post-Apocalypse: Antony Loewenstein and Jeff Sparrow’s <i>Left Turn</i>

Guest Post — The Political Post-Apocalypse: Antony Loewenstein and Jeff Sparrow’s Left Turn

Guest post by Adam Brereton  Antony Loewenstein and Jeff Sparrow, in the introduction to their new book Left Turn: Political Essays For The New Left, invite the reader to imagine current examples in popular culture that envision a future ‘in which the world to come is, in any respect whatsoever, an improvement on the present.’ […]

In the golden Dark house — a week at Varuna

In the golden Dark house — a week at Varuna

Earlier this year I wrote about the places in which we write – the feeling that a particular location would be the key to writing success and inspiration. This week I’ve been incredibly lucky to be given a residency at one of Australia’s most prestigious ‘places in which to write’ – the Varuna writers’ house in […]

Guest Post — ‘A design of beauty and significance’: Rachel Robertson’s <i>Reaching One Thousand</i>

Guest Post — ‘A design of beauty and significance’: Rachel Robertson’s Reaching One Thousand

Guest Post by Elizabeth Bryer  I have been waiting for this book for four years. Not that I knew that it would come into existence; I just hoped, quietly confident, that it would. Rachel Robertson’s ‘Reaching One Thousand’, joint winner of the 2008 ABR Calibre Essay Prize and later published in Black Inc.’s Best Australian […]

Writing Another Jakarta: An Interview with Ruby J. Murray

Writing Another Jakarta: An Interview with Ruby J. Murray

Guest Post by Rebecca Harkins-Cross Ruby J. Murray’s debut novel Running Dogs explores how mythologies, both political and personal, may influence the trajectory of our lives. Protagonist Diana is an Australian aid worker living in Jakarta (an experience that Murray herself had in 2009-10), who occupies a liminal space as neither tourist nor insider in […]

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‘To whittle down all that I am and give it a value’: Anna Funder and the Miles Franklin decision

‘To whittle down all that I am and give it a value’: Anna Funder and the Miles Franklin decision

At the end of All That I Am the protagonist Ruth muses: ‘It is the hardest thing, to work out one’s weight and heft in the world, to whittle down all that I am and give it a value.’ This now seems remarkably apt for a work given a dazzling array of literary value. Anna […]

Liticism’s Miles Franklin Countdown: Favel Parrett’s Past The Shallows

*Spoiler alert: this is not intended as a straight review and I do refer to key plot points in this analysis. It’s strange the way works read in succession can speak to each other, the way the mind finds connections in works never written to be compared. In Tony Birch’s Blood the protagonists see a matinee […]

Liticism’s Miles Franklin Countdown: Tony Birch’s Blood

*Spoiler alert: this is not intended as a straight review and I do refer to key plot points in this analysis. In one of the most vividly memorable moments of the novel, our young protagonists Jesse and Rachel wander like giants among miniature versions of the Eiffel Tower, the Great Pyramids, Dutch windmills, and the Leaning […]

Why don’t you know what you’ll get paid?

Why don’t you know what you’ll get paid?

The first piece of writing I was ever paid for was an essay I wrote for the fourth issue of Kill Your Darlings journal. I remember vividly the moment I received the email that the work was accepted, and when they told me what I would be paid. I cherished that money because it was, […]

The public and the private: Notes from the Sydney Writers’ Festival — Part II

The public and the private: Notes from the Sydney Writers’ Festival — Part II

A girl sits on a crowded train reading aloud an explicit section from Nabokov’s Lolita: She would try to relieve the pain of love by first roughly rubbing her dry lips against mine; then my darling would draw away with a nervous toss of her hair, and then again come darkly near and let me […]

Luhrmann’s <i>The Great Gatsby</i> film trailer released

Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby film trailer released

‘New York, 1922. The tempo of the city had changed sharply. The buildings were higher. The parties were bigger. The moons were looser and the liquor was cheaper. The restlessness, approached hysteria.’  Confetti falls, fireworks explode and sparkle, expensive shirts are flung from mezzanine floors, orchids are in abundance, sleek cars glide, while Jay-Z and Kanye […]

Notes from the Sydney Writers’ Festival — Part I

Notes from the Sydney Writers’ Festival — Part I

Scribbled notes / Late nights / Early mornings / Lilting author signatures still fresh inside new novels / The mesmerising experience of prose read aloud by the author who penned it / Black coffee / Dead phone batteries / Lightbulb books hanging overhead / Sitting in the green room watching authors prepare for their sessions / The sunny sky […]

Guest Post — When the adaptation ruins the original, or how I began to hate <i>Jane Eyre</i>

Guest Post — When the adaptation ruins the original, or how I began to hate Jane Eyre

Guest post by January Jones Book to screen adaptations are not a new phenomenon, however, the recent popularity of such films has reached heightened proportions. You’d have to be living under a rock to have missed the hype surrounding recent blockbuster The Hunger Games; the first film of a trilogy based on Suzanne Collins’ bestselling […]

Miles Franklin 2012 shortlist announced

         The shortlist for the 2012 Miles Franklin Award has just been announced, and it appears to be decidedly free from the controversy that plagued it last year — we are neither in ‘sausage-fest’ nor ‘cock-forest’ territory. There are five works in the shortlist, down from a longlist of thirteen, and with three female writers […]

Liticism’s Miles Franklin Countdown: Anna Funder’s <i>All That I Am</i>

Liticism’s Miles Franklin Countdown: Anna Funder’s All That I Am

*Spoiler alert: this is not intended as a straight review and I do refer to key plot points in this analysis. In the context of the Miles Franklin and its criteria of presenting ‘Australian life in any of its phases’ Funder’s work seems, initially, difficult to advocate. Though the ‘now’ of the novel is the primary […]

JOMAD podcast

JOMAD podcast

JOMAD — I Heard You Like Books? is a new Australian literary podcast by Johannes Jakob and Madeleine Crofts, and I was thrilled to be invited as the guest on the most recent episode. You can listen to the full episode here, where we talk about analysing (and stalking) Bret Easton Ellis, the Miles Franklin longlist, being paid […]