Geoffrey McGeachin's Charlie Berlin novels, The Diggers Rest Hotel and Blackwattle Creek, have just been re-issued by Penguin Australia with evocative new covers featuring shiny gold medallions indicating that each of the titles has won a Ned Kelly Award for Best Fiction. The third Berlin story, St Kilda Blues, will be published by Penguin in June.
Back in 1986, the wildfire success of Frank Miller’s stunning comic Batman: The Dark Knight Returns led publishers to take a serious look again at comics and graphic novels as a format for delivering gritty crime stories.
There is perhaps no other idea so entrancing to the writerly-mind than setting out to write during a cross-country trip. And there’s no smoother way to write about the amber waves of grain rolling endlessly past than on a train, says anyone who has written on both a train and in a car. So it’s not surprising that Amtrak’s plan to give free, roundtrip rides to writers (riders and writers!) is turning out to be a popular idea.
Is blurbing (authors praising the work of other authors in exuberant one-liners for the covers of their books) a transparent back-scratching exercise, a necessary evil, or a literary art-form? And can praise solicited for promotional purposes be trusted? Thuy On, books editor of the Big Issue, takes a look.
The Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards were inaugurated in 1985 by The Hon. John Cain, Premier of Victoria, to mark the centenary of the births of Vance and Nettie Palmer and to honour and reward literary achievement by Australian writers.
P.M. Newton worked as a cop in NSW for 13 years. In 2010 she published her first novel, The Old School, set in Sydney in the early 1990s featuring Detective Nhu ‘Ned’ Kelly. The follow up, Beams Falling has just been released and P.M. Newton will be talking about her books at Mosman Library on Monday March 17. She kindly answered a few questions:
On the Radar – We’re off to a fiery start this week with English writer MR Hall’s latest forensic mystery, but there’s also historical crime fiction, two books full of espionage and a unique new self-published novel by Oak Anderson called Take One With You.
Awarded annually to the best manuscript written for young adults and children, the Text Prize has unearthed extraordinary, multi-award-winning novels and launched international publishing careers. The winner receives $10,000 and a publishing contract with Text Publishing.
I am not ashamed to say that I have an abiding interest in popularity. Not my own so much — though I’m as eager to be liked as anyone — but popularity as a process and a phenomenon. Why are certain people, ideas, or stories popular at any given moment? Are there ways to make ideas or works of art that are currently unfashionable, fashionable?
This week, I ambled into the Anthropologie in SoHo, convinced I needed more artisan squirrel letter openers and frilly aprons adorned with arabesques. Along with the usual twee displays of coat hangers magically becoming birds in flight, there was something that stopped me dead in my tracks – a display of old Reader’s Digest books from decades ago, each sawed into a different letter.