I thought I’d blog a bit about my 2010 reading and writing journey, as much for myself as anyone reading this.
Books I read:
1. After The Fall by Kylie Ladd
2. Scary Kisses by Liz Grzyb (ed.)
3. How To Be Good by Nick Hornby
4. A Feast For Crows by George R.R. Martin
5. Look At The Birdie by Kurt Vonnegut
6. The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
7. The Kingdom of Four Rivers by Guy Salvidge
8. The Best Thing by Margo Lanagan
9. New Ceres Nights by Alisa Krasnostein and Tehani Wessely (eds.)
10. 2012 by Alisa Krasnostein
11. Siren Beat / Roadkill by Tansy Rayner Roberts / Robert Shearman
12. Angel Rising by Dirk Flinthart
13. Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan
14. High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
15. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
16. Steamed by Kate MacAllister
17. Whalesong by Robert Siegel
18. Power and Majesty by Tansy Rayner Roberts
19. Worlds Next Door by Tehani Wessely (ed.)
20. Liar by Justine Larbalestier
21. Sprawl by Alisa Krasnostein (ed.)
22. Bleed by Peter M. Ball
23. The Loving Dead by Amelia Beamer
24. The Company Articles of Edward Teach / The Angaelian Apocalypse by Thoraiya Dyer / Matthew Chrulew
25. X6 by Keith Stevenson (ed.)
26. Palimpsest by Catherynne M. Valente
58% are either written or edited by women. This was my reading goal for 2010 – to be conscious of a gender balance in my reading. Goal achieved!
58% are either written or edited by Australians. Probably representative of the love affair I’m currently enjoying with my local speculative fiction scene.
The majority of these texts would be fairly new – not more than two years. Again reflective of my current interest in a very fast moving local scene. There isn’t much time (for someone who is only reading 26 books a year) to go back to older boks.
This represents a significant decrease in my typical reading levels – at roughly a book a fortnight, I’d say that this is close to half what I’d normally read (typically around the 50 per year mark). I’m guessing this is due to a) a new job, and b) doing more writing than I’ve ever done.
Books I didn’t read (bought this year but haven’t gotten to yet) AKA ‘Summer Reading’:
1. Dead Sea Fruit by Kaaron Warren
2. Sourdough and Other Stories by Angela Slatter
3. The Girl with No Hands by Angela Slatter
4. c0ck by Keith Stevenson (ed.)
5. The Fall by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan
6. Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde
7. Australis Imaginarium by Tehani Wessely (ed.)
8. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
9. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
10. Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
11. The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi
12. Glitter Rose by Marianne de Pierres
13. The City and The City by China Mieville
On top of this at the beginning of the year I identified about 60 books from my bookcases that I wanted to finally read – didn’t touch any of them!
All the details are on the blog in various places, but in a nutshell, my writing year went:
1. A short story and a poem were published in the Peter Cowan Writers’ Centre Anthology ‘An Alphabetical Amulet’
2. Shortlisted for the inaugural Peter Cowan Writers’ Centre ‘600 competition’ (flash fiction)
3. Shortlisted for the Katharine Sussanah Prichard Speculative Fiction Award (second year running that I have placed)
4. Published in ‘Soundzine’ (and recorded the story as well)
5. Published on ‘Parenting Express’ website.
Doesn’t feel like much when I look at it like that, but I have also written a number of pieces this year (some of which are still in the submission process) that I think will find homes somewhere, eventually. It might be that they need refining, but I have probably half a dozen pieces to tinker with next year. I think I have improved as a writer as well, which is another goal I can tick off.
Another way to look at it: 2010 saw 33 submissions for 5 acceptances (of sorts), 25 rejections, and 3 still pending.
1. I recorded a story – The Guardians – for Tehani Wessely’s Worlds Next Door website.
2. I wrote a review of Galactic Suburbia (podcast) for Australian Speculative Fiction in Focus.
3. I had my WIP novel professionally edited.
4. I started this blog… to date I have placed 29 pieces of flash fiction up (See TOC here), and since starting in February 2010 I have had 4,685 views – not including YOU, intrepid reader!
To finish my work in progress novel by July 1st 2011.
To polish my existing short stories and find a home for them.
Thank you to everyone who comes to read, everyone who comments, everyone who joins in the competitions, and everyone who has supported me with books as prizes, or advice, or help!