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I am a writer, editor and reviewer based in Perth, Western Australia: my first novel, The Dagger of Dresnia (Book 1 of The Talismans) is published by Satalyte and available from their website as well as Amazon.com and other online outlets. As both writer and editor, I specialise in historical and high or epic fantasy. If you have a manuscript in preparation, don't waste money on editing too early. Instead, let me help with a mini-assessment of your work, based on careful reading of your synopsis and first 20 pages. Then, when you've worked on the manuscript in line with our discussions, I will be happy to do a full edit before you send it off into the big wide world. My fees are very reasonable - for more about my editing work, CLICK HERE

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Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Swancon 2010

I came back to Perth especially to attend Swancon, and a friend has very kindly put me up for the nonce, since my first housesit doesn’t start until Thursday. I have house-sitting or other accommodation lined up for the next three months, so I shall avoid at least half of Mount Gambier’s beastly rotten horrible cold wet winter.

Are you wondering what “Swancon” is? It’s Perth’s annual Speculative Fiction convention. Easter every year is special for Perth fans. We descend on a hotel — for the last few years it’s been the All Seasons in Northbridge — to play RPGs, to listen to speakers, to socialize and to dress up for the masquerade that’s held on the Saturday night. There is always a Guest of Honour from overseas (this year it was American Scott Sigler) and an Aussie Guest of Honour (Ian Irvine from NSW filled that role for 2010). They are both interesting speakers who are keen to advise and assist less experienced writers. Scott Sigler had us all enthused about the benefits of self-publishing (he’s one of the rare birds who gained contracts with publishing houses via that route and has now become a bestselling author) while Ian Irvine offered useful tips on writing and publishing, as did other authors including Narrelle Harris, Richard Harland, Dave Luckett and Stephen Dedman. These are the panels I love best and I find it a great privilege to sit at the feet of writers who have made it to the revered status of professionally published author!

As last year, I was on a Romance panel, again with Juliet Marillier, one of my favourite authors, who won the Tin Duck, a prize awarded by popular vote to the WA author who has had material published in the last year. Juliet won the trophy for her novel “Heart’s Blood”. Three other friends — Laney Cairo, fellow Egobooer Sarah Parker and fan Samara Morgan — were on the panel with Juliet and me, and despite a certain amount of sometimes overwhelmingly enthusiastic participation from the audience I think we gave a pretty good account of ourselves:-)

There were book launches, too, notably Belong, an anthology about finding and acknowledging one’s true home, and Scary Kisses, a good fun blend of vampires and other shape-shifters with suspense, horror and humour. Both are published by Ticonderoga. Several friends and colleagues, including Annette Backshall, Astrid Cooper, Carol Ryles, Donna Maree Hanson, Felicity Dowker, Nicole Murphy, Patty Jansen, Simon Petrie and Sonia Helbig have works in one or other of these anthologies. Scary Kisses will be reviewed in the April issue of The Specusphere, which goes live this Sunday. We hope to have a review of Belong ready for the June issue.

Swancon’s all over until next Easter, but meantime I’m eagerly looking forward to the Katharine Susannah Prichard SF group’s mini-con on 2 May and the much-anticipated Worldcon in Melbourne in September.

5 comments:

Glenda Larke said...

Wish I could attend every year!

What I do with blog comments is I automatically enable the past 2 or 3 days, and require moderation on the rest. Spam never seems to find the most recent postings!!

Imagine me said...

It was a great con, wasn't it. I enjoyed every minute of it.

Satima Flavell said...

Good thinking, Glenda. I'll change my moderation limits.

Sorry you weren't at Swancon, but I hope to see you at Worldcon. Quite a few Perthites will be there. I reckon it will be quite an event!

Half of what makes a con enjoyable, Helen, is good company, and we had it in spades, I reckon!:-)

Sue Bursztynski said...

I have been to two Swancons (the last one I attended I had breakfast with Glenda Larke, which was nice.) I wish I could go every year, but you can go to New Zealand for less than from Melbourne to Perth, so it has to be very special for me to go. That, and during term break and preferably not clash with Passover! But I went when Lois McMaster Bujold was there and when Charles de Lint came and I was invited to be on a panel with him! Swancon is a great con. It's laid-back and friendly. My first time, peoplewere saying, "Is this your first Swancon?" and making me welcome.

Juliet Marrillier is very popular in my library. The girls are passing her books around and I must admit I enjoyed Heart's Blood, her take on Beauty And The Beast, and so did the girls.

Satima Flavell said...

This country is just too darned big, Sue:-But I'm looking forward to seeing you at Aussiecon4. In fact, I think all four of us (Glenda, Helen, Satima, Sue) will be there, won't we, and Juliet Marillier too. It should be a blast!

We have some superb writers in this country. I was disappointed that none of our novellists made it into the Hugo shortlist, but we are well-represented in other sections. My money's on Shaun Tan.

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