Posts Tagged ‘peter m ball’

Always happy to post about Shimmer!

The stories are wondrous and the art is glorious.

Issue 12:

We released our first issue in 2005. We’ve gotten stronger with each issue, and Issue 12 contains wonders and marvels, from Peter M. Ball‘s punk-not-emo teenage werewolf story, to Josh Storey‘s gorgeous take on the tale of Orpheus, to Monica Byrne‘s story of stigmata in a colony on a distant planet. We’ve got an imaginative reinterpretations of Little Red Riding Hood and the Wizard of Oz, and a sweet little zombie love story. And more! We packed 9 stories into this issue.


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The delightful John DeNardo at SF Signal asked a few people to pick and choose for their dream anthology, citing what you’d choose and why. The answers were so big, they had to split the post in two.

Mine is here, as is that of Nancy Kress (hallowed be her name), Violet Malan and other interesting folk.

Part Two is here.

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… over at Guy Salvidge’s place. Sprawl is the latest anthology from TPP and has some awesome stuff from the likes of Peter M. Ball, L.L. Hannett, Sean Williams, et al.

He says nice things about Brisneyland by Night:

“Brisneyland by Night” by Angela Slatter is an intriguing and complex tale about the Weyrd, and more specifically a kinderfresser or child eater. Worse, it seems unscrupulous sorts are harvesting the tears of young children in the creation of some kind of elixir. Our protagonist, Verity Fassbinder, is half Weyrd and half Normal herself, and is thus mistrusted by both groups. She’s on the trail of some missing children, and her investigations force her to confront the heinous misdeeds of her own Weyrd father, the odious Grigor. I enjoyed reading this so much that I was genuinely disappointed to turn onto the last two pages.

The rest is here.

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… is over at Apex! Huzzah!  And it totally got io9‘d! Double huzzah!!

Rat opens the double doors and the stairwell smells of baking, the air thick with dull warmth and the smell of yeasty dough. He wrinkles his long nose and wonders if it will be like this for the entire way down, or if the doughy stink will gradually transform itself into the aroma of fresh-baked. He hopes not. Rat worked in a bakery one summer, and he hasn’t enjoyed the smell of bread since. It reminds him of the finger burns and the thick coats of lard painted into hot bread trays to keep the dough from sticking as it cooked.

He flexes his fingers. The big backpack is so heavy it’s cutting off the circulation to his arms, so he has to remember to keep his fingers moving.

Someone has bolted a sign to the mahogany balustrade, warning people not to throw coins or pebbles down the centre of the stairwell. The guidebook says this is for the safety of fellow climbers. Every year someone is struck on the head when they’re 130 flights below, and there’s no chance of getting help in time when you’re that far down.

Go here to read the rest.

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Alisa Krasnostein is the unsleeping powerhouse that is the engine of Twelfth Planet Press. Really, she doesn’t sleep – email her at any hour of the day or night and she’ll reply. Go ahead. Try it. See? Told ya.

TPP has produced some of the finestworks in Australian spec-fic recently: Deb Biancotti’s A Book of Endings, Peter M Ball’s Horn, Marianne De Pierres’ Glitter Rose are but a few. Upcoming efforts include the anthology Sprawl, Ball’s Aster follow-up Bleed, and next year’s one-per-month mini-collection of single author short stories. “Alisa is busy” wins the award for understatement of the year.

Here, she takes some time out to answer random questions and refuse both donuts and danishes *gasp*. 

1. Are there days when you think “Argh! What was I thinking going into small publishing?”
No, not really. Though right at this moment in time, I’m working pretty hard to get my books to the printer to have them in time for Aussiecon 4 and I have wondered what it would be like not to have to work weekends as well! But I love indie publishing. I might get frustrated with the progress of a project but I never regret getting into indie press.

2. What kills a story deader than dead for you?
I could list the cliches or tropes or subgenres that don’t do it for me but the truth is, any story done well just works, no matter the cliche or trope.

Bad writing kills a story deader than dead for me. The most unhelpful thing is this … a story either has IT or it doesn’t and you can pretty much tell if it’s one or the other by the first paragraph, first sentence even. Writing that turns a phrase just so, sentences that run away so that you forget you’re reading and smooth comfortable, confident writing, that’s not too showy. Anything else, and I’ve already moved onto the next story. Also a story that has nothing to say or no story to tell or nothing new to add or contribute.

3. What do you hate most about editing?
Working with writers who are unable to pull back and view their own work with perspective and dispassionately. I hate working with writers who won’t let you touch a word of their work, or reply to feedback with long explanations of backstory that support why that sentence says what it does (I don’t care, if it’s not clear to the reader, it’s not clear to the reader) or writers who argue with house style by quoting a reference (that’s cool ‘n all but your story will be styled differently to the other 17 stories in the book that I already signed off and sent to layout … and I’ll be the one who looks sloppy).

4. What do you love most about editing?
Working with all the other writers who aren’t the above 🙂  I love seeing an idea or theme turned into a story written just for me. I love being the person to see it first. And I love the back and forth of working with talented writers. I love the energy and creativity that comes from that experience. I love working with writers to take a good or great story to something even better.

And I love holding the finished product in my hand afterwards.

5. Donuts or danishes?
Sadly neither right now as I have sworn off the sugar for three months 😦

TPP lives here. Go, look, buy – there’s a more than excellent chance you’ll find something you’ll love.

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Thanks to Jeff VanderMeer for letting me blogsit over at the memory cathedral. Less thanks for leaving me with Evil Monkey, although I understand why no kennel would take him.

This evening I had the weekly write-club session with my writing buddy Peter M. Ball (the man who committed the novella Horn). I went back over the novel, which I’ve not touched for about a month for a multitude of reasons (PhD, proofing short story collections and stories for various anthologies, fear, laziness, etcetera). I re-read the last chapter I’d written just to get a feel for it, to put myself back into the story (so I can distinguish the pseudo-fairytale German-like setting from the pseudo-Arabian Nights Damascus-like setting, and get my tone straight).

Everything was flowing rather well; I was happy with the state of the writing as I’d left it. It needs work, of course, it’s a bit skeletal in parts and needs a good hamburger of plot, but on the whole I was happy with the first draft. And then I came across one of those gems that a writer finds her/himself heir to … the things you insert into the text when you’ve not yet done enough research about a particular topic, so you put in square brackets, type in CAPS a note-to-self and highlight it in yellow. Or that’s my normal habit, at least. On this occasion I seem to have been a little laissez-faire and so what I actually found in the middle of a paragraph was this little beauty:

 Ze rest is here.

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… one of those reasons may be that, without the dubious protection of our writer tag,  the rest of society would lock us up for posts like this, in which we replace psychotic cats with sociopathic bears:

Peter wakes up to find the Spokesbear sitting on his chest, staring him in the face.

Spokesbear: Time to work.
Peter: Fuck off.
Spokesbear: You’re not sick anymore.
Peter: I feel like someone’s taken a razor blade to the inside of my eusophegus.
Spokesbear: Yes, but you can *stare at a screen without bleeding from the eyes*. That means it’s time to work.
Peter: You’re mean.
Spokesbear: It’s what you pay me for.

The rest resides here.

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