Apocalypse Triptych on sale!

A very quick post because…

Ebook Sale: All Three Books in The Apocalypse Triptych on Sale on Kindle!

All three books in The Apocalypse Triptych are currently marked down to $2.99 (£1.99) each on Kindle. The promotion will run Feb. 6-13.

  • THE END IS NIGH: USUK
  • THE END IS NOW: USUK
  • THE END HAS COME: USUK

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During the duration of the promotion, the ebook editions will be exclusively available on Kindle, though of course they are also available in trade paperback. Now’s a great time to pick up the whole series if you haven’t already!

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New story: Breathing

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Hooray! My new story Breathing is out today in Aurealis #95. This one is science fiction, which is a bit unusual for me. I’m still figuring out how to describe it.

This is one of those stories that grew out of my response to a song. I’ve got a few like this. I often find my way into a story through the mood generated by music, or an evocative lyric. I’m a particular fan of using crazy word associations through misheard lyrics (or mondegreens) to spark my creativity.

In the case of Breathing, though, I was caught by the lonely mood of the music and one particularly powerful lyric in the song Hello, by Evanescence:

Has no one told you she’s not breathing?

That line is intriguing. It is rich with unacknowledged tragedy and cruel revelation.

I’ve since found out there is a sad story behind Hello: it was written by the multi-talented Evanescence frontwoman, Amy Lee, about an early tragedy in her life. But I didn’t know that when I wrote Breathing.

I won’t say any more (spoilers!), but if you read the story, let me know what you think!

Conflux 12 wrap up – Part II

conflux12headerrgbThis year at Conflux we decided to do something a bit different with the writing workshops and run them throughout the weekend instead of all on the first day (Friday), which is how we’ve done it previously. One thing I found is – probably due to the interactive nature of workshops – these are a really good forum to hook up with other people at the convention. I managed to get in three workshops. (Although one was in two parts and probably counts as two.)

I’d asked Alan Baxter to run a version of his Write the Fight Right workshop, mostly because I’d never done it and I really wanted to. (A perk of being in charge of programming!) It’s usually a whole day, so he did a condensed version of it over two hours. It’s great, I highly recommend it and I’d love to do the full version one day. It covers stuff like what it feels like to be punched in the face, the physiological effects of fighting (far more complex than you’d expect), how to use space and even some handy first aid advice. As you’d expect he provides plenty of anecdotes and stories from his own life experience and even pointed us at a few clips of fights to give us a sense of the difference between cinematic show and what a real fight might look like. Hint: the fight between Darcy (Colin Firth) and Cleaver (Hugh Grant) in Bridget Jones’ Diary is more realistic than you might think (quintessential smashing-through-shop-window scene notwithstanding).

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I did a two part workshop conducted by Kaaron Warren and Nick Evans called Spray and Wipe. This involved a trip to the Green Shed (a store that sells recycled items donated through Canberra’s tips), where we had to choose an item from the shop as an inspiration point for a story. Kaaron then took us around to the Green Shed Underground (a separate store run by the Green Shed where they sell all their donated books and clothing) and made us choose an outfit for one of our characters and dress in it to write the story.

I decided to have a stab at generating an idea for something for my suite of colour-themed stories I want to begin work on soon, and picked out a very orange biscuit tin to start with. This got coupled with a really terrible orange mumu-style shirt and some fairly tacky orange jewellery. It was when I happened upon some great 1970s cookbooks with predominantly orange covers, however, that my story brain kicked in and an idea really came together.

After that, it was back to the con venue and in the afternoon Nick Evans, a journalist by trade, put us through a fairly brutal regime of cutting, rewriting and reworking the 400 odd words we’d got down in the morning with Kaaron. I was completely exhausted at the end of it, but I definitely have the beginning of a story and I’m pretty sure I know where this one is headed!

Finally, on Monday, I did a workshop with life coach Kenny Snable on overcoming negative thoughts to increase writing productivity. This one was great. She took us through the relationship between thoughts, behaviours and emotions and gave us a bunch of strategies to manage the negative ones, and some exercises to help identify and articulate what the actual issue is that is causing us grief.

And this is only a small selection of the smorgasbord of professional development that was on offer this year!

Never Never Land – now in ebook!

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The Never Never Land

Hooray! The Never Never Land is out today in ebook! To celebrate, there’s a Goodreads giveaway happening if you fancy winning a hardcopy version. (There’s one for Australia and one for the US, UK & Canada.)

There’s also been a series of blog posts over on the CSFG’s website interviewing some of the authors who contributed to NNL – the most recent of which is the awesomely talented Shauna O’Meara, who is not only a contributing author, but also created the cover and internal art for NNL. She’s also done a new illustration for her story, especially for the CSFG blog – have a look, it is stunning.

 

The Never Never Land – ebook coming soon!

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The Never Never Land

Well, here is some exciting news! The Never Never Land anthology, containing my story “Adventure Socks”, is due out in ebook on 1 July!

To celebrate, CSFG are hosting some interviews with authors from the anthology.The first one up is Thoraiya Dyer, whose debut novel Crossroads of Canopy, set in a giant rainforest, is due out from Tor in January 2017.

How little girls deal with monsters

In celebration of the release of Strange Little Girls from Belladonna Publishing, I’ve put together a board on Pinterest with images I found useful in creating my story, “Pretty Jennie Greenteeth”. I have these boards for quite a few of my works-in-progress, but I usually keep them secret. This is the first one I’ve released. Click on the link below to head over to Pinterest to have a look.

Follow Leife’s board Pretty Jennie Greenteeth on Pinterest.

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Pieris rapae (Johann Fournier)