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A new lease of life for my books

As you know, I was bitterly disappointed when Satalyte shut up shop as it might have meant the end of my admittedly short career as a publi...

About Me

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I am a writer, editor, reviewer and dance teacher based in Perth, Western Australia.

My books

The first two novels of my trilogy, The Talismans, are not available as e-books at present, but I expect to get them back online shortly. However, I do have paperbacks of The Dagger of Dresnia at the low price of $25 including postage within Australia. I also have a short story, 'La Belle Dame', in print - see Mythic Resonance below. The best way to contact me is via Facebook!

Buy The Talismans

The first two books of The Talismans trilogy were published by Satalyte Publications, which, sadly, has gone out of business. I hope to see my books back on Amazon under a new publisher in the near future.

The Dagger of Dresnia

The Dagger of Dresnia
Want a copy? Contact me at satimafn(at)gmail.com

The Cloak of Challiver

The Cloak of Challiver
Available again as an ebook soon!

Mythic Resonance

Buy Mythic Resonance

Mythic Resonance is an excellent anthology that includes my short story 'La Belle Dame', together with great stories from Alan Baxter, Donna Maree Hanson, Sue Burstynski, Nike Sulway and nine more fantastic authors! Just $US3.99 from Amazon. Got a Kindle? Check out Mythic Resonance.

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Places I've lived: Manchester, UK

Places I've lived: Manchester, UK

Places I've lived: Gippsland, Australia

Places I've lived: Gippsland, Australia

Places I've lived: Geelong, Australia

Places I've lived: Geelong,  Australia

Places I've lived: Tamworth, NSW

Places I've lived: Tamworth, NSW

Places I've Lived - Sydney

Places I've Lived - Sydney
Sydney Conservatorium - my old school

Places I've lived: Auckland, NZ

Places I've lived: Auckland, NZ

Places I've Lived: Mount Gambier

Places I've Lived: Mount Gambier
Blue Lake

Places I've lived: Adelaide, SA

Places I've lived: Adelaide, SA

Places I've Lived: Perth by Day

Places I've Lived: Perth by Day
From Kings Park

Places I've lived: High View, WV

Places I've lived: High View, WV

Places I've lived: Lynton, Devon, UK

Places I've lived: Lynton, Devon, UK

Places I've lived: Braemar, Scotland

Places I've lived: Braemar, Scotland

Places I've lived: Barre, MA, USA

Places I've lived: Barre, MA, USA

Places I've Lived: Perth by Night

Places I've Lived: Perth by Night
From Kings Park

Inner Peace Blog

Inner Peace Blog
Awarded by Joanna Fay. Click on the image to visit her lovely website!

Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award
Awarded by Kim Falconer. Click on the pic to check out her Quantum Astrology blog!

Fabulous Blog Award

Fabulous Blog Award
Awarded by Kathryn Warner. Click on the pic to check out her Edward II blog!

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Sunday, 28 September 2008

Sara's come to stay

WOW! I can haz Sara? She has come to stay with me and the chooks until Ellen gets home on Wednesday. She loves the garden and spends most of her time out there exploring. When she's awake, that is. Being advanced in years and almost blind with it, she tends to sleep a lot - until a man comes to visit. Then she loses half her years and rolls onto her back giggling like a schoolgirl, the little hussy.

The video shows Sara on one of her voyages of discovery. You can just see the chooks in the background at one point; they appeared to be having a conversation about whether or not Sara was a dog. One or two of them, I believe, thought that perhaps she was a new species of rabbit. However, discretion being the better part of almost everything when you're a chook, they backed off hastily when Sara, blissfully oblivious to her feathered audience, inadvertently approached the fence. video

I met another lovely dog this week. On a visit to the doctor, I was astonished to see a black labrador pup tied up beside her desk. It turned out that my doctor has become a foster parent for baby guide dogs, and this was her first little charge. At three months, the little one was obviously bored to tears. She was amusing herself by tugging on the curtain that surrounds the examination table, apparently enjoying the cheerful sound of curtain rings on metal as she pulled it back and forth. Sadly, she will not get away with that kind of thing for long. Baby guide dogs have to get used to sitting quietly for long periods, and in fact my doctor asked me not to look at this one or speak to her, as one of the things she has to learn is to get used to being bored and ignored when in the workplace. It's a big ask for a little doggie. I'm sure owners of guide dogs must give them lots of attention when they're not on duty to make up for it. This pup, BTW, isn't the one from the doctor's surgery, but looks mighty like it. I filched the pic from www.dailypuppy.com.

Of course, the canine species has its rogues, just as ours does. A neighbour rang earlier this week to warn me that I should keep the hens locked up at night because hers had all been killed the night before. It might have been a fox, rather than a dog. Strange as it may seem, foxes have moved into urban Perth and are responsible for some unpleasant things. Not that we can seriously blame the foxes: the fault lies with C19 immigrants who brought rabbits and foxes with them for the sport of hunting. We've been paying for their short-sightedness ever since, for both species are now pests all over the country. And this is a big country, big enough to house more rabbits and foxes than Mother Nature ever wanted, needed or even dreamt of when she invented them.

On another topic, guys, can I ask you, if you follow my blog regularly, to sign on as a Follower? (See left, under my pic.) And if you set yourselves up with the Followers icon, I 'll sign on to become a Follower of yours. That way we drive traffic to each others blogs and we can click on the icons to move on to the next when when we're doing the rounds:-)
Monday, 22 September 2008

All gone Min-con - until another day!

Sunday's mini-con went off without a hitch, thank heavens. Panellists, readers, and audience all seemed to have a good time, and many compliments have come in, some asking when the next one will be! This was the second mini-con the Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre's Speculative Fiction Group has held, and although neither one has been hard to organise, the many little jobs that have to be done - mainly in the realms of telephone and email - do take time. I spent at least two days last week doing little but fire off emails, answer the replies, pass information on to others, going back and forth with Qs and As. I know my co-convenor Helen Venn was also rushed off her feet during what was a busy enough period for her without the mini-con!

Readings from Adrian Bedford, Juliet Marillier, and Laney Cairo were especially well received and there is little doubt that the favourite panels were "How to Handle Rejections", with Adrian Bedford, Russell Farr, Simon Haynes and Bevan McGuiness and "How to get out of the Slushpile", with Lyn Battersby, Janet Blagg, Stephen Dedman, Alisa Krasnostein and Tehani Wessely.

Helen and I were more than ably assisted by a wonderful team including Annette Backshall, Toby Coulstock, Dorathy Duperouzel, James and Margaret Hansen, Sonia Helbig, Karen Laneaux, Yvonne Lewis, Joanne Mills and Carol Ryles. Lots of others, some of them unknown to me, pitched in and helped on the day, too, helping to create a really worthwhile event. Hugs and thanks to you all!

Lee Battersby, among others, got some great pics. Check 'em out and see what a great day we had!

Update: More pics, these being from Toby Coulstock, can be seen here!
Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Books, books, glorious books!

One of the best trilogies I've read in a long time is Jo Abercrombie's very first effort, entitled The First Law. I am so impressed with this man's writing I just can't wait to see what he comes up with next. Add to this the fact that the guy is drop-dead gorgeous and you quickly realise he has a Future with a capital Fu. Juliet Marillier has done an indepth interview with him at Writer Unboxed, and you can read part one here. Part two will go up this Friday and part three the Friday after that, to coincide with the US release of the trilogy's finale, Last Argument of Kings. I hope Mr Abercrombie reveals the secret of his magic, because I want to write like him!

As well as interviewing the wonderful Joe Abercrombie and doing guest spots at the Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre here in Perth (see under the KSP Mini-con entry below for one of them, coming up this Sunday) Juliet Marillier is busy with books of her own. Soon to be released is another in her famous Sevenwaters series, the first in several years. It's called Heir to Sevenwaters and having had the privilege of beta reading it, I can tell you in advance that it's brilliant. It's a beautiful love story centred around an epic journey and involving one of the most unusual characters you're ever likely to meet: a very special baby. And late next year will see another Marillier treasure in print, an atmospheric gothic-style romance called Heart's Blood.

In between those two we'll have another book or two from Karen Miller, and about the same time as Juliet Marillier's Heart's Blood is released we'll finally get to read book one of Glenda Larke's Random Rain trilogy, which is going to be published by HarperCollins Voyager Australia. This one will be out in September 2009, with the other two books scheduled to follow in 2010. I've been dying to read this series ever since Glenda read a bit of a very early draft at Swancon 2004! Good things, it seems, eventually come to those who wait for publishers to stop dithering and start publishing.

I've always wanted to read Glenda Larke's ill-fated first novel, Havenstar. You've probably read the story of how it was one of the novels chosen to launch Virgin Publishing, only to die a premature death when the company folded after only a few months. Copies are as rare as chooks' teeth, changing hands on Amazon for three figure sums! However, my good e-buddy Hrugaar has tracked down an ex-library copy and sent it to me all the way from the UK! And not only Havenstar: Ru was also able to send me another out-of-print book I've been wanting; Marcus Herniman's The Seige of Arrandin, book one of his Arrandin Trilogy. I have started to read both of these gems and will really get stuck into them once the mini-con is over.

Even though I've been flat out with preps for the mini-con, the Specusphere deadline and the five spoilt chookies these three weeks past, I have actually been writing regularly. When I was last in Adelaide, my friend Annalou Larsen lent me a book called From Where You Dream, by Robert Olen Butler. Butler is an academic but also a fine writer, and he has devised a system to help writers contact the unconscious depths where the creative energy lurks. He recommends writing first thing in the morning, before breakfast. And guess what - it works! I've been getting up at 6.30am, making myself a drink of hot water with grated ginger and lemon juice and then sitting down to write until 8.30 or 9.00am. The progress I've made in three weeks of this regime is amazing. Barely awake, and not taking my usual two cups of coffee, I find that I'm still partly in the dream space, where Butler says you have to be in order to write successfully. It works for me. You might like to give at a go as well if you have trouble getting the flow going.

I think I've caught up on all my blogging news now. Next time, I'll have a report on the mini-con. Help me pray for a fine day on Sunday, will you?
Monday, 15 September 2008

KSP Mini-con program!

Another reason I’ve been so utterly flat out of late is my involvement in preparations for the Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre Mini-con. It’s been hectic, but we’re nearly there now. Here’s a run down of the goodies you’ll find – or miss, if you don’t live in Perth!

10.00 am: "How to Handle Rejections"
Panellists: Adrian Bedford, Russell Farr, Simon Haynes and Bevan McGuiness
followed by readings from Sonia Helbig and Helen Venn

11.00 am: "Clarions; gains and losses":
Panellists: Lee Battersby, Lyn Battersby, Carol Ryles, Helen Venn and Jessica Vivien
followed by readings from Jo Mills and Elaine Kemp

12.00 noon: "What's Hot and What's Not - trends in Speculative Fiction":
Panellists: Elaine Kemp, Alisa Krasnostein, Ian Nichols and Grant Stone
followed by readings from Juliet Marillier and Ian Nichols

1.00 pm: "Lies, Damned Lies and Research":
Panellists: Dave Luckett, Hal Colebatch, Satima Flavell and Juliet Marillier
followed by readings from Hal Colebatch and Dave Luckett

2.00 pm: "Hooks and Sinkers - writing a killer first line"
Panellists: Adrian Bedford, Stephen Dedman, Russell Farr and Bevan McGuiness
followed by readings from Adrian Bedford and Stephen Dedman

3.00 pm: "Steampunk"
Panellists: Toby Coulstock; John Parker; Carol Ryles and Grant Stone
followed by readings from Deb Ratcliffe and Carol Ryles

4.00 pm:"How to get out of the Slushpile":
Panellists: Lyn Battersby, Janet Blagg, Stephen Dedman; Alisa Krasnostein; Tehani Wessely
followed by Q&A and wind-up.

I'm proud and happy to be involved an event with so many of my friends, mentors and favourite writers. It should be a wonderful day. Do come if you can!
Sunday, 14 September 2008

New Specusphere issue

No, I haven't taken a job in Antarctica, or moved to Kathmandhu, I'm still here in Perth and the last three weeks have been truly hectic, hence no blogposts.

Here's part of the hectic-making stuff: a shiny new issue of The Specusphere. As usual, there's a rare mix of articles, reviews, fiction and poetry for your delectation and delight. Take a look at the Table of Contents:



Editorial
Where do I come from? by Stephen Thompson

Features
Irrealism and the Bizarro movement by Stephen Thompson
Ray-guns for Rocketeers by Jeff Harris

Up and Coming
Ford Street Makes Waves
The Wisdom of Water by John Archer
New Books from Gollancz for September–October 2008
New Books from Tor for September

People
Creating Memorable Characters: interview and discussion with Fiona McIntosh by Astrid Cooper

Writing and Publishing
Where do (writing) ideas come from? by Bill Youatt-Pine

Fiction
Hell Hath No Fury by David Such
Dolphin Dreaming by Ashley Hibbert
Chopped up Cut up by Damien Kane

Poetry
The Curse by Felix Calvino

Film Reviews
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, directed by Rob Cohen
Journey to the Center of the Earth, directed by Eric Brevig
The Happening, directed by M. Night Shyamalan
Hellboy II: The Golden Army, directed by Guillermo Del Toro

Book Reviews
The Wheel of Darkness by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
Son et Lumiere by Ian Nichols
Saturn’s Children by Charles Stross
Phantom Pleasures by Julie Leto
Midnight Never Come by Marie Brennan
Black Ships by Jo Graham
Bewitched by Sandra Schwab
Incandescence by Greg Egan
Heart-shaped Box by Joe Hill
Swiftly by Adam Roberts

This month's reviews were written by Bobbi Sinha-Morey, Maurie Breust, Ross Murray, Simon Petrie and yours truly, and I think we did a pretty good job!

I have lots more things to blog but I'll come back during the week with a catch up post. Meantime, do check out The Specusphere. You'll see a link in my profile box at the top of the page.
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