I have now left my comms job at Creative Commons Aotearoa New Zealand after three happy years. I have just started a new job doing comms for the Human Rights Measurement Initiative at Motu 15 hours a week. I'm enjoying learning about whole new fields: human rights, and data analysis. Lots to get stuck into!
Today I went on Jesse Mulligan's RNZ programme in the book critic slot (Tuesdays after the 2 o'clock news) to talk about fanfiction. It was pretty nerve-wracking to speak live on air, but heaps of fun. I will get to meet Jesse in person when we're on the same LitCrawl panel next month, doing Short Story Book Club Live.
Aw, I got this lovely birthday card from one of my editors!
I turned 37 on 28 September 2017. 37 is a prime number and I feel certain this will bring me luck, or at least cake.
(For the record, books are ALWAYS a welcome birthday gift. Sometimes people ask me whether it's ok for them to give me books. YES. YES IT IS.)
I was thrilled but also terrified to be invited to speak in the book critic slot on Jesse Mulligan's programme on Radio NZ National. It was my first time speaking live on national radio and, although I was horribly nervous, once I got going I relaxed and started enjoying myself. Here I am speaking about copyright in the digital age - one of my hobby horses. Frankly they're lucky to have shut me up after only a quarter of an hour.
As part of Spec-Fic Month, Elizabeth Heritage reports back from LexiCon, the 38th New Zealand National Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention. LexiCon, which had 165 members, was held in Taupō over Queen’s Birthday weekend.
Ferrante’s new book about writing is a journey through the fragments of experience.
Two big things happened while I was reading this book: the US elections and the Kaikoura earthquakes. They bashed my reading sideways. Suddenly, everything – even an esoteric discussion about the nature of literature, translated from Italian – was about politics and disaster.
Reviews of In the Supplementary Garden by Diana Bridge (Cold Hub Press, 2016), Fish Stories by Mary Cresswell (Canterbury University Press, 2015), Anatomize by Natasha Dennerstein (Norfolk Press, 2015), for Landfall Review Online
Read my reviews of In the Supplementary Garden by Diana Bridge (Cold Hub Press, 2016), Fish Stories by Mary Cresswell (Canterbury University Press, 2015), Anatomize by Natasha Dennerstein (Norfolk Press, 2015).
Review of Work / Sex, with Kate Holden, Leigh Hopkinson, Jodi Sh. Doff and Julie Hill, from WORD Christchurch, 2016
If Ivan E. Coyote did one of the best things a literary festival can do – broke my heart and then put it back together again made better – this session did another: forced me to examine my own unconscious bias and realise I was wrong.
Review of Marcus Elliott's interview with mortician and author Caitlin Doughty at WORD Christchurch, 2016
Death is an odd thing to be chipper about. LA-based mortician, ‘death positive’ advocate and YouTube star Caitlin Doughty is definitely chipper, though: she has that extreme chirpiness that I’m going to assume is compulsory for anyone living in Los Angeles.
Review of Joanna Norris' interview with Tara Moss at WORD Christchurch 2016
At the 2050 session yesterday about climate chaos, panellists spoke about the danger of going from denial to despair. I was thinking about that a lot as I watched author and feminist activist Tara Moss give a presentation on sexism in the media, politics and society.
For me, literary festivals are a massive intellectual high. I like to pour myself into them and demand stimulation. They fizz me up; I start bouncing around, talking very quickly, and gesticulating as energetically as I can (given that I am usually holding a bag, a laptop, a coffee and several books). I arrived at the Strangely Human session in a state of high excitement, keen to hear Paula Morris interview Michel Faber. And then something happened.