Welcome to our first issue for 2004 and what a terrific
start to the publishing year! We’re announcing all the winners
and commendeds in the third annual IP Picks Awards, complete with
a summary of the judges’ comments and profile of the winning
authors. For all you future entrants, read and
And don’t forget to check out the details on IP.assess,
our expanded assessment service.
We’re looking for qualified freelance assessors as well as
We welcome Karin Wong to our editorial team and announce some changes
to our staff structure.
David Reiter remains as Director of course and retains the right
in his editorials to take on the bureaucrats at Arts Queensland
about the state of arts funding. But it’s not all doom and
gloom and he does thank them for the minimal support we did receive
for the coming year. There is brighter news from the Australia
Council and young authors (30 and under) should be aware of some
new opportunities with IP. (erm, certainly counts me out!)
Congratulations to David on his own growing list of literary achievements.
Bestlinks features Lothian’s
release of The
Greenhouse Effect, his first title for older children and we
review the successful production of Paul
and Vincent at the 4MBS Performance Studio.
Given the hectic schedule at IP, I often wonder if he has a double!
Out and About gives us a brief summary of David’s recent
trip to North America and previews events leading up to our Autumn
publishing season. The next eNews will feature a complete schedule
of events and profile the five new titles we’ll be releasing.
Meanwhile, sit back, keep cool (those of you Down Under) and enjoy
the newsletter. Don’t forget our devilish
deal offers and
buy a book or six before you leave.
Sara Moss, Editor, IP eNews
the Director's Desk
IP heads into its seventh year, you could forgive us for itching
to get on with some more exciting developments. We are
expanding on all fronts, with our most exciting publishing program
to date in the year ahead. The Australia Council is taking a keen
interest in what we’re doing up here and has invited us to
apply for special funding (always welcome!), and Arts Queensland,
after a year of neglect, will be funding us once again in the coming
year, albeit at very modest levels (more on that in my Editorial).
On the heels of a very successful collaboration with 4MBS Classic-FM,
we have at least two new collaborations on the drawing board, and
we are beginning discussions with the Queensland University of
Technology that will hopefully see a partnership develop between
us and their new Cultural Industries Precinct.
I was delighted by the explosion of interest in our IP Picks 2004
national literary competition, which saw the number of entries
more than double, and a marked improvement in the overall quality
of the average manuscript. There was so much interest, in fact,
that we’re still receiving requests for entry forms months
after the close of the competition! I
know the judges had a difficult job in declaring the winners,
be interested in Sara and Morag’s summary of the results.
You may recall that we agonised a bit over the future of IP Picks
this time last
the results this year have made it a fixture on the IP horizon
and the national literary calendar for the next few years at least!
More work than ever is flowing through Treetop Studio these days, and
it gives me pleasure to announce a change to our organisation that
acknowledges the hard work of our staff. Sara Moss now takes on the
role of Poetry Editor as well as Newsletter Editor, and Morag Kobez-Halvorson
has been appointed Fiction Editor. Joining the staff to replace Heidi
Kefer, whose work experience contract has ended, will be Assistant
Editor Karin Wong, who has a special interest
in IP’s business activities. We've updated our Contacts page
to reflect these changes.
We have an exciting program of launches coming up for our Autumn Season
that will include events in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, and
maybe even a tour of New Zealand to spread the
IP word there—Kiwis, be warned!
Welcome to our many new subscribers. We hope you’ll continue
ro enjoy IP
eNews and consider it one of your first ports-of-call for what’s
happening in Australian writing at the moment!
Dr David Reiter
Recently, Queenslanders went to the polls and returned
the Beattie Government with only a slight reduction to 63 seats
(at this printing) in its record-breaking majority of 66 out
of a Parliament of 89 members. Premier Beattie saw this as support
for his “Smart State” strategy, which supposedly extends
to Arts policy. But when decision-makers take him too literally
in trying to position Queensland apart from the rest of Australia
things can go wrong — as
they did in the recent Major Grants round.
After not funding IP last year, Arts Queensland (AQ) has
awarded us a grant of $15,000. This is a modest sum, compared
generous support enjoyed by the University of Queensland Press. Despite
spotty support for poetry over the past five
years, AQ has significantly increased funding to them in direct grants
and in perks such as production money in support of the various awards
such as the new Tom Shapcott Award for poetry.
inconsistent with a Government that supposedly welcomes
competition. How Smart is it when funds are
directed to a single publisher? It’s
high time that the Government puts more dollars behind their rhetoric.
This year, we were obliged to once again compete with individual
artists for a pathetically underfunded pool of resources. UQP, on
gets an easy nod via the Cultural Infrastructure Program
(CIP), where it has no industry competition. If the Government were
serious about funding its policy commitment to a vigorous publishing
this State, it would allow publishers to compete on a level playing
field for publishing funds, whether these be in the form of grants
or other perks currently enjoyed exclusively by UQP.
Shed a tear for the Peer Review Committee charged with finding a
way to distribute the scarce funds available to it in the September
round. They had to find a rationale for underfunding us, so they
played the Queensland Culture Card.
For those of you who believe that Queensland is part of Australia
and benefits from exposure to cultural currents from across this
country, you may be surprised to learn that, as a condition of our
grant, we must apply the funds to authors resident in Queensland.
No such parochialism applies to the Premier’s
Awards, which more often than not fund winners from interstate. Nor
does it apply to the money UQP gets.
Essentially the message to us is we don’t
care about the realities facing you as a national publisher and maintaining
a credible stable of authors from interstate. We are well within
our rights to set conditions defined by artificial cultural boundaries,
and if you lose quality interstate authors as a result, well, that’s
Consider the consequences of applying such a policy over the long-term.
Authors who have just moved to Queensland would be eilgible, no matter
what their State — or even country — of origin might
be. Authors who have lived their whole lives in Queensland and then
moved elsewhere would be punished for their betrayal of local
culture, even if they write about it from afar. Such policies such
we should think of ourselves as Queenslanders first, and Australians
a distant second.
When I wrote to AQ to object to
this rationale for underfunding us, the Director-General
and her Deputy
tried to reassure
me that the grant amount had
nothing to do with the high regard AQ has for IP and our contribution
to the cultural scene in this State. I couldn’t
help but ask if they would have felt slighted if someone had cut
their salary by 25%!
The time has come for IP to test that supposed regard
AQ has for us. The current system no longer works for us. If AQ values IP as
much as they say, they
way to more adequately fund us. Things must change.
From the tone of our Editorial
you might think that we are ungrateful for the money Arts Queensland
offered us this year. That’s not true — we
appreciate any funding received from the taxpayer, however
modest the amount might be.
The grant was $15,000, significantly less than the $20,000 we received in 2002,
and the salt in the wounds was that it came with strings. We had to apply it
to projects by artists resident in Queensland.
As it happened only two of the nine projects we put to AQ fit the
bill, owing to IP’s increasing profile as a national publisher.
We argued that Merle Thornton, who has strong connections with
Queensland, and who visits her regularly,
should have been supported. But because she lives in Melbourne, AQ was not
moved to rule her project eligible under the conditions of the grant.
So, the projects we will be able to support will be the Audio + Text
version of Swelter by
Yeppoon authors Louise Waller and Kristin Hannaford; Popular Mechanics by Brisbane
author Liam Ferney; and a CD of Paul & Vincent, David Reiter’s stage
play recently co-produced by IP and 4MBS Classic-FM.
We had applied for over $60,000 in this round and are disappointed
that most of those worthy projects put to Arts Queensland will
have to go unsupported.
But you get used to “making do” in this industry, and IP will continue
to do the best we can with the taxpayer funded dollars we receive.
We only wish we could have done
more for the other worthy projects we have in the queue.
One of the best kept secrets
about IP is that we have an assessment service! It hasn’t
been something that we advertise, yet we get a steady flow of authors
seeking us out by word-of-mouth.
Not that there’s any shortage of assessment services out
there. The quality of service they provide, however, is, by the
evidence we receive, uneven. How does one qualify to be an assessor?
Is it by publishing a few books yourself and then offering to share
your experience with the less experienced? Or does surviving a writing
program qualify you to advertise your wares?
As a publishing house, we get a fair share of submissions from authors
who have received assessment reports from these companies, and I must
say that sometimes the actual ms bears little resemblance to the report
the author proudly attaches as evidence of the book’s immediate
Perhaps the problem is that some assessors have actually had limited
experience in the publishing industry and write reports more related
to their personal tastes than what publishers actually want.
That’s why we’ve decided to go public with our assessment
service, and even given it a name: IP.assess.
There will be three key differences between IP.assess and your run-of-the-mill
First, IP’s assessments will be focused on
advising clients on how to meet the market with their projects. This
will mean less effort to stroke the author with praise and more hard-hitting
detailed suggestions on how to improve on what’s there. Some
of those projects may come to us, while others may ultimately
end up with other publishers—and happy sailing to them!
A second difference is that ALL of our assessors will be certified
as qualified to assess mss in their field of specialty and will be
assigned projects accordingly. A plumber may be a tradesperson, but
that doesn’t qualify her to re-wire your house!
Finally, IP.assess will provide a premium service to our clients. The
average assessment for an average length novel by an average assessment
house is about $450. IP.assess will charge more than that, but then
you get what you pay for. Your assessor will be available for follow-up
queries, rather than melting into the night after the report is written.
And if one of our assessors says that your book is good and recommends
that we publish it, that will certainly give you an inside track.
If you’ve read this far, you’re probably either interested
in working for us as a freelance assessor or having your ms assessed
by our new service. If it’s the former, please send us an expression
of interest, with a CV that demonstrates what you can offer as a part
of a premium service. If it’s the latter, have a look at our
new IP.assess page for details on the process and the cost.
<title>IP eNews </title>
We’ve recently made some important structural
changes here at IP. These changes better reflect IP’s growth
and the skills and special interests of our editorial team.
now be Poetry Editor and remain as your Newsletter Editor.
to Morag Kobez-Halvorson who has been promoted to the position
of Fiction Editor.
Morag’s promotion opened an opportunity for a new Assistant
Editor, and this position has been filled by Karin Wong.
is our pleasure to welcome Karin to IP and introduce her to
My name is Karin Wong and I’m an international student
from Singapore. I’m here in Brisbane to pursue a degree
in Mass Communication. I am currently a final year undergrad
at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), undertaking
a Bachelor of Mass Communication and majoring in Public Relations
and Media Communication. I also hope to pursue a career in
the publishing industry specifically in the areas of promotion
<title>IP eNews </title>
[This issue, our Focus will be on
the winners of the IP Picks 2004 national literary competition.]
Judging for the IP Picks Awards 2004 concluded at the end of January.
During a steamy meeting on the Gold Coast, three winners were chosen
from an outstanding shortlist of six entries.
Two winners were chosen in the poetry section: Nora
Krouk’s Skin for Comfort and Cate
Kennedy’s Joyflight. Joel
commended for Subterranean Radio Songs. In the fiction category,
Joel won for his novel, Another. Margaret
Metz of Sydney was Highly
Commended for her novel, Live by the Bottle and Wendy
Jay Evans of
Melville, W.A. was commended for her collection of short stories,
The Diggings are Silent and Other Australian Stories.
We congratulate the winners and commendeds and thank all the entrants
for supporting the IP Picks Awards.
— Sara Moss and Morag Kobez-Halvorson
Winner IP Picks Awards 2004 Best
Fiction Another by Joel Deane
A bleak story of life in the suburban wasteland – a family
merely existing on the edge of the Australian urban sprawl in that
place called ‘Another’:
Slowly but surely, subdivisions are sold, homes
are built. These are the homes of the naïve and desperate.
The story focuses on the adolescent relationship of Toby and Suzie
exploring the cycle of poverty and the hopelessness it reaps throughout
three generations of Toby’s family. There’s no doubt
the author manages to capture the despondency and barrenness of this
landscape and those who inhabit it.
The author’s portrayal of the cycle of violence and poverty
is incisive. Technically the novel is well written and solidly structured,
maintains a good pace throughout, and intelligently tackles many
of the bigger issues of contemporary western society.
I found myself drawn into this story with its haunting and uncomfortably
familiar setting and characters. Deane effectively captures the desolate
atmosphere of the urban fringe with its servos, maccas and air-conditioned
Toby keeps cutting around the perimeter
of the subdivision, past the backsides of the houses. The front subdivisions
off with lawns, fences, and street lights—but every second
or third subdivision in the back blocks is either grass and thistle,
with a FOR SALE sign pegged in the middle, or a just-finished brick-veneer
shell (no curtains, no carpets) plonked in a raw clay yard.
At the end of the electrified fence is another fallow paddock roped
in by rusted barbed wire. Toby places a palm on top of a wooden post,
propels himself over
the wire, lands up to his armpits in the paddock’s long grass.
I see this paddock as it will be. A giant car park. Perfectly flat, with newly
painted parking bays and creamy black bitumen that burns the soles of bare feet.
This giant car park funnels shoppers into the hallowed halls of an Ozymandius
of a shopping centre, a glass-and-concrete behemoth that shimmers in the heat,
dominates the skyline. The giant car park is covered with cars—blanketed—just
as a canopy of giant trees once covered the paddock.
Toby passes through the grass and thistle paddock, oblivious to the shadows that
brim about him in the tall grass like fish in deep water ... red kangaroos ...
tiger snakes ... bandicoots ... native birds that did not survive occupation
long enough to be named ... two Koori hunters, motionless, waiting to strike—the
reflections crowd Toby. These are the shadows of so many thousands of generations:
each impression layered over the one that passed before. On the far side of the
paddock sits a twenty-four hour service station and a McDonald's. Toby climbs
the fence, slouches across the car park toward the McDonald's Drive-Thru menu
board, leans on the fibreglass ORDER HERE box, waits, squints up the Drive-Thru
at the cashier's window, then, finally, bends over, says Hullo into the microphone…
The violence that runs through the veins of Deane’s fictional family
deftly handled. Deane shows us how personal violence can be a natural outcome
in a physically violent and alienating landscape.
The novel’s highly literary ending and striking imagery stayed with me
long after I put it down.
About Joel Deane
Joel was born in Melbourne in 1969 and spent his childhood in the
Goulburn Valley before returning to the city as a teenager. At 17,
he became a copyboy at The Sun News-Pictorial, going on to work as a reporter on The
Sun, Sunday Sun and Sunday Herald-Sun. He has also worked as
a press secretary for the Australian
From 1995 to 2001, he lived in San Francisco, working as
a multimedia journalist, editor and producer.
His poetry and short fiction has
been published in Antipodes, Famous Reporter, Imago, the Moving Works Exhibition,
Navigations, Overland, Quadrant, Salt-lick, Spindrift, Studio, Ulitarra and Vehicle.
He has also performed at Melbourne’s La Mama Poetica, Intersection for
the Arts in San Francisco’s Mission District and the M.H. de Young Museum
in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.
Joel lives in Melbourne with his wife and two children. Another is his first
IP Picks Awards 2004 Best Poetry
Winners: Skin for Comfort by Nora Krouk; Joyflight by
Judges’ Comments on Skin for Comfort Skin for Comfort covers a lot of ground, historically geographically and emotionally
in the experiences of a Russian Jewish émigré. The collection
is very well structured and divided intelligently into six sections that reflect
the emotional journey of the author as she explores and comes to terms with
own personal history in the wider context of the history of the Jewish people,
including the impact of Stalin in Russia, the Holocaust and the Middle-East
Through the journey of Skin for Comfort, Nora Krouk successfully establishes
an intimate connection with the reader. This is reflected in the title of the
final section, Given that we know each other.
There are many powerfully confronting poems here. “Breath” addresses
the Holocaust, calling the silent witnesses to murder to account:
… But, others? Those farmers
along the way past
rows of poplars
and yellow flowers
and the green fields…
Safe in their homes
praying in cracow churches
breathing the poisoned air
of their knowledge.
The Holocaust has been addressed extensively in literature, but the importance
of doing so never lessens, particularly when a voice from the era adds to our
insight and understanding.
Yesterday” addresses the subject of Stalin’s atrocities from the
invaluable perspective of a voice with an intimate connection to the victims:
… Efim and I dream collective dreams
He saves his Father Stops them in time
They’re still in China He wakes with a smile
E. not all is lost;
But I descend to the permafrost of the frozen bones
back to 1937 USSR and the mincer grinds
Krouk Lipa Yankelev
Spy for a foreign Power
On the same day
they collected Guita
seventeen year old enemy of the state
taken in ‘38
left to fend for herself
step back to the edge back to the walls’
congealed horror back to the cell
with the blood-sticky floor
back to improbably weird confessions
The value of this personal account of history cannot be overstated, yet
there are many strong poems of more personal nature. “She touches luminous wood” addresses
an ageing couple’s lack of intimacy and the underlying longing of the
… Now they know
touching saves babies’ lives
This skin to skin
coaxing the cells
Touching as the old don’t
moving in pantomime
handling odd things
brushing past one another
chafing not touching
not in a way children or lovers do
She strokes luminous wood
The title Skin for Comfort is drawn from the fifth section, The
Smoke Grass, exploring the experiences of the author as a migrant and
the vital theme of
particularly liked “Bar Mitzvah 22 February 1997”. I found myself
laughing aloud in response to this poem; the laughter is an essential release
for the reader, just as writing about hats was essential for the author:
E. is disgusted – you write about hats!
He waves the paper – Deng Xiaoping dies
the world is watching a global story
You write about hats!...
I say let boys bar mitzvah Mothers wear hats
even as Deng’s ashes are scattered. …
The author manages the challenging task of bringing fresh meaning to a theme
that has been the focus of so many literary works.
Reading this collection imparts an historical perspective on the experiences
of Russian Jews, as well as the impact of these events on the author personally.
The language is unapologetically brutal in the early sections of the collection
when the author is establishing the wider historical premise for the more personal
poems which follow. The voice and tone softens in the latter sections, finding
a balance in the transition between cultures:
Sense of belonging is the best
ballast: even the ghosts may rest
now: the poor junks sink, once and
for all, and the old phantoms of
a Gulag be appeased by naming sons
after dead uncles. Hot sun dries
tears. Encapsulated memories throw
out shoots – an unexpected crop of
live senses. This land of smoke-grass
and strange vastness quietly swallows
the cosmopolitan hoards fathering
them into new contexts.
This is a well-organised collection that melds the universal and personal
perspectives in original and refreshing ways.
About Nora Krouk
Nora Krouk was born in Harbin, China to a Jewish
mother and Polish Catholic father, with a Russian Orthodox uncle
and family friends
ethnic and religious backgrounds. She considered herself Russian.
Nora began writing Russian poetry in childhood, switching to English
while living in Hong Kong, where a collection, Even Though (now disowned)
also worked as a Russian-language journalist in Shanghai, and as an English-language
journalist in Hong Kong, for the South China Morning Post and other newspapers.
Throughout her life Nora has been obsessed with languages, studying and
becoming fluent in German, French and Spanish, as well as Russian and
translates Russian poetry into English.
Her Russian poetry has been published in magazines in Shanghai, New York's
New Review, Yegud Yotseisin in Israel, an anthology of Russian poets
in Australia and another of Russian poets from China published in St
Russian Buker). Her poetry in English has also been widely published
and anthologised. In 1993 she won the Fellowship of Australian Writers'
Nora lives in Sydney. She is married with two sons, one now deceased,
three grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
[IP Picks 2004
(continued from previous column)]
A collection of poems dedicated to exploring the moment and rich
with the details of life. Cate Kennedy is an intelligent poet
with a remarkable ability to freshen
the language. In Joyflight, she turns
her subjects inside and out to help us view the world from unique perspectives.
A strong connection with nature is evidenced in many poems, including
the excellent long series “Five Encounters with birds” where we’re
shown how these creatures teach us about our own fragility and
… Its beak is buried in its chest,
its captor praying for someone, inconceivably,
with pity and money for an owl, for the shame
to reduce itself to a transaction,
for something to happen
before death makes everything worthless.
I saw a child like this once—for sale, in Pattaya, Thailand
standing with the same patience
outside a bar on the prostitutes’ strip
gazing at the ground, hands resting on thighs
fingers folded and touching like tucked wings
the head and shoulders too big for a body
designed for anything
except this offering up…
… These birds, and the million others
tilting through dusk light
in the decreasing spaces, in dwindling free air
struggling across oceans, claw-scratching at our memories
those tiny collisions
with our glazed right-angled surfaces
shock a tiny gentleness from us
eggshell-thin, our fragile pity
jolts a circuit like a glimpse of open sky
our shoulders twist
our fingers hover, not wanting to touch
yet still weaving themselves, helpless,
Kennedy doesn’t allow the detail to detract from the emotional qualities
of her writing. Many of her poems are deeply moving, for example, “The
… I put on talkback radio to drown out their
but that’s a mistake.
It’s a litany of grievance
are only learning what we all have to learn:
you learn to live without it
only you don’t know why
you keep pressing along those fences.
“The Next Month” is a moving account of miscarriage; the final lines
are heartbreakingly beautiful:
I am without instruments, an abandoned craft
bereft of my best idea.
Show me what star will guide me now
She also creates an authentic atmosphere through a highly sensual use of language.
We can feel that familiar heat in “Following the Game”:
trickled down our adolescent cleavage
as we watched, sucking icecubes
the fan’s face a mechanical, slow-motion negation
the ball clocked gently
so much molten time
that rhythmic, momentary taste
of moving air
The title poem describes an event from her father’s past, exploring the
defining moments of life in dazzling detail:
I want to carry this talisman carved like a rune
for my father, for my uncles, for my grandfather, and for that
for that pure torn-open moment where they each slipped free of
… that everything forgotten will blaze, every joy burnished
every recollection of unexpected flight shared
and passed from hand to cupped hand,
carved next to the skin,
recited for courage.
A collection of poetry focusing on nature, the loss of life and identity, isolation
and the handing down of family legacies.
It offers harsh insight into the plight of Irish people during the potato
famine in poems such as “The Blight”. The epigraph preceding “The
Poor Commissioners” likens the hungry poor of the potato famine to the
displaced poor of today’s Third World, the poem itself compelling the
reader to consider this parallel.
It is the past we find containable, folded along old
like a map or a card, a stone to mark distance,
reduced to well-worn lines, and observed through a square glass
the Hungry Poor, outside the gates at Delphi House
the villains and the victims, the snow
soaked with amnesia,
rendered into monochrome by this driving rain
but they are with us
trudging with the last of their energy,
thousands of miles now, from poorhouses and famine fields
chilled and exiled, holding pitchforks or their children
or their unsigned paperwork,
forged, faded identifications,
the wrong currencies,
they are with us and we will not see them
as they come through the valley spurred by a mirage of lit windows
and laughable hopes of some borrowed hearth
they are with us, and we are done with them
we will not meet their eye.
The poet shifts focus effortlessly from the universal to the personal, giving
voice to her despair and sense of failure in the very moving “The Next
My husband drew me this bath
who wept tears I’d never witnessed
as your sanctuary bled from me
who wants me to relax.
I hate every period pain
every unmistakable precursor
sharpening into cramp this month.
My head rests on the rim
detached from my failed body;
my pelvic bones,
rise like empty islands.
The title poem emphasises the value of storytelling, and making sense of oneself
within the framework of one’s ancestry:
Everyone but my father who witnessed that event is
He hands me the story, a small recovered legacy,
Glinting and bright with disuse.
Now I carry those three buffeted grinning children in their Sunday
hardly able to believe their luck,
astonished by joy and flight.
Many of the individual poems in this collection create an easy intimacy between
author and reader in a style that is natural and beguiling, prompting the reader
to search for their own perspective.
About Cate Kennedy
Cate Kennedy’s first collection of poetry, Signs of Other Fires was
Highly Commended in the Victorian Premier’s Awards, and won the Vincent Buckley
Poetry Prize in 2002, allowing her to travel to Ireland where many of the poems
in this collection were inspired.
has had poetry published in Cordite, The Newcastle
Poetry Anthology, Blast and The Journal of Australian
Studies, and broadcast on ABC Radio National. She has
also won several national prizes for short fiction. She teaches
creative writing, and lives on a farm on the Broken River in
The Australia Council has had some bad press
over the years in Queensland, with charges from individual artists
right up to the State’s Arts Minister that the Federal body
was selling short the arts in Queensland. The Literature
Board has always maintained that it plays an even hand between
the States, pointing to low participation rates of Queensland artists
as a possible explanation of why our share of the federal pie has
historically been slim compared to that enjoyed by New South Wales
Whoever was right may still be open to debate, but the Literature
Board has shown considerable interest in IP’s activities of
late. While we haven’t been exactly overwhelmed by funding
from the Board, it has supported our publishing program two years
in a row.
Recently the Board invited us to apply for special
funding arising out of the Federal Government’s new Young
and Emerging Artists’ Initiative, which we are about to do. If
successful, IP would offer mentoring support to up to three young
or emerging artists who have a promising body of work in hand. While
there’s no guarantee that their work will be published in the
end, that would certainly be our goal.
The invitation acknowledges the quality of titles IP has published
in our Emerging Authors’ Series, which has been active almost
since IP was established in 1997.
With the Initiative in mind, IP asked the State writers’ centres
to invite expressions of interest from potential candidates. We are
asking them to send us a letter of introduction, providing details
on their writing and publications, if any (to be eligible, the authors
can have at the most two books previously published); a synopsis
of the project they have in mind; and a sample of their work. In
the case of poetry, this would be 6-8 representative poems. For fiction
and non-fiction, they should include a chapter or two.
The Literature Board will advise us of their decision some time in
May. Thereafter we will short-list candidates from the submissions
we’ve received and get the mentorship under way in June.
The important thing is for interested authors not to leave things
until the last minute. They should submit their expression of interest
to IP ASAP, but certainly no later than 1 May. Submissions
should be addressed to: Young & Emerging Artists’ Initiative,
IP, Treetop Studio, 9 Kuhler Court, Carindale 4152. Alternatively
you can submit via email.
If you know of likely candidates, please spread the word!
Promotion is the life-blood of any enterprise,
and our Director, Dr David Reiter, was more than happy to accept
an invitation to be interviewed by fuel4arts, an organisation that
advises arts organisations across Australia on behalf of the Australia
Council on strategies for success on the business side of the industry.
The case study was published in February and can
be downloaded for free from the fuel4arts site. You must subscribe
to fuel4arts, but you can do this for free, and the registration
is instantaneous, so you’ll be able to register and download
the interview in the same session. Plus you can sign up to fuel4arts
other mailing lists and chat rooms, which provide a constant flow
of valuable information about how to succeed in the arts industry.
David talks not only about IP’s innovative approach to the
business side, but also gives valuable advice to individual artists
insights into what the industry wants. Here’s
a brief excerpt from the feature, just to whet your appetite:
I’m amazed by the number of people who know next to nothing
about what drives the publishing industry — this, despite the
proliferation of long and short courses, panel discussions and even
Ph. D programs that supposedly deliver the inside story about how
to get published.
As Director of IP, an independent
publisher located in Brisbane, I have a stake in seeing that the
word gets out — and often — to those who should be listening.
But, as an author of 11 titles going on 13, I do have sympathies
for those who find their head continually
banging against a proverbial wall of indifference.
There are certain urban myths about getting published that need to
be buried along with the one that says you risk being blown up if
you gossip with your agent — or anyone else — on your
mobile while filling your car with petrol. And this is what this
feature is all about — increasing your chances
of getting noticed, and then published.
A brief column covering
David’s visit to Ohio and a sneak
preview of events ahead leading up to Autumn Season 2004.
Difficult as it was to tear himself away from the excesses of Thanksgiving,
David managed to visit Cleveland State University and his alma mater,
Cleveland Heights High School, as well as making contact with several
Cleveland State University (CSU), at less than 40 years old, is the
youngest of Cleveland’s three universities — four
if you’re counting Case Institute
and Western Reserve, which formed Case Westerrn Reserve University
some time ago.
CSU is unique in having its own prestigious Poetry
Centre, which hosts
readings by visiting poets from around the globe. While David doesn’t
have quite the profile needed to warrant a reading at the Centre, Head
of Department Dr John Gerlach invited him to give a guest lecture to
his creative writing workshop and then help organise a reading at Mac’s
Backs in Cleveland Heights, a bookshop in the same vein as Gleebooks,
though somewhat smaller.
The CSU creative writers were particularly keen to hear about IP’s
digital publishing program and David’s
work in literary multimedia, so, have digital projector, will travel
(actually the university’s AV Center
had one to lend out).
David was expecting to find a fair bit of knowledge about multimedia
composing and the like at CSU, but it was all rather new to them. Perhaps
the Mid-West lags a bit behind places like New York and Brisbane? In
any case, David’s
demos were greeted with interest — and lots of technical questions.
A few days later, David gave several classes at Cleveland Heights High,
talking about his career as a writer, and how he ended up there as
opposed to the career in medicine he had in mind as he completed a
full battery of science and math courses in Grades 11 and 12.
Most of the students had never met a “real” author and
they had several probing questions about how a publisher survives Down
Under. One even asked about the type of pets he had, no doubt expecting
he had a shed full of koalas and the like!
Visits to libraries at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland Heights-University
Heights, and Shaker Heights revealed much interest in contemporary
Australian writing, and, more importantly several orders!
Minus many kilos of books, David returned to Australia in early December,
hoping to build on that American connection.
February-March will find David out &
about in South-east Queensland, catching up with libraries in Ipswich,
Toowoomba, Cleveland and Redlands, with readings from his
new novel Liars
and Lovers, and perhaps from his newest release,
The Greenhouse Effect, a novel for older kids.
leap-year day, David will run a follow-up workshop at Stanthorpe
Library from 1 p.m. for the newly-formed writers’ group there.
The date coincides with the last day of Stanthorpe’s annual
Grape Festival and has absolutely nothing to do with David’s
love of fine wines. The
group has been going very well since his
first session with them last year. He’ll
also be reading from his new fiction after the workshop.
details on the workshop, which is open to newcomers as well as group
members, and the reading, please contact Di Rieger at Stanthorpe
David is planning another of his whistlestop
tours, albeit by car this time, to regional centres in NSW and Victoria
to coincide with our Autumn Season launches in Sydney and Melbourne.
These can include readings a la Stanthorpe, so if your library or
writers' group is interested in him paying you a visit, please contact
us ASAP before the itinerary is set.
The only firm event to date is the Brisbane launch of Merle Thornton’s
for Claire, which will be hosted by the historic Regatta Hotel
at Toowong on 21 April. It promises to be a lively affair, given
Merle’s long love-hate relationship with the hotel during her
next issue of eNews will have a more complete schedule
of Autumn Season 2004 events, which will include two new releases
of Commended entries from the IP Picks 2003 competition, including
Sydney author Jenni Nixon’s feisty poetry collection, Café Boogie.
After a nerve-wracking set of
rehearsals, David Reiter’s script Paul and Vincent went to
stage at 4MBS’s Performance Studio on 11 October. The
production was booked out, which pleased everyone involved, except
for those unfortunates who left their bookings until too late.
In keeping with David’s multimedia interests, we had not
only live actors Michael Churven and Eugene Gilfedder, but also
period music arranged by 4MBS staff and an image show of the
artists’ work keyed to the action on stage. The
performance was recorded live in 4MBS’ Performance
Studio, the CD co-production should
come out very well indeed.
The production was so well-received
that 4MBS is planning to propose it have an extended season at Brisbane’s
Powerhouse Arts Centre later this year. And there are plans afoot
for a film version,
if production money can be raised. Watch out Cannes!!
The Paul & Vincent CD will be produced with the assistance
of Arts Queensland, under its 2004 grant to IP.
Director Janelle Evans was so impressed with David’s skills
with the laptop and projection equipment that she asked him to assist
with some images she had for another 4MBS production the following
week, on Jane Austen!
Stay tuned for news about a new collaboration, which will see David
prepare a script on the letters of the Russian composer Tchaikovskyand
his lady friend Mme von Meck. The production is scheduled for May,
during 4MBS’ annual Classical Music Festival and will again
star Eugene Gilfedder.
<title>IP eNews </title>
We don’t often feature
the sites of other publishers here, but Lothian Books in Melbourne
is an exception that makes the rule.
An established house specialising in educational text and gardening books,
like IP it is an independent venture still run by the family that set it up
(Peter Lothian is their Managing Director). Lothian is well-known for its children’s
books, especially its lavish picture books, which have drawn on the talents
of Maleny-based author Gary Crew and multi-award winning illustrator Gregory
Rogers. A worthy alternative to the titles off-loaded by the branch plant and
multinational publishers crowding so many of our bookshop shelves.
But our real reason for calling your attention to Lothian is the fact
that they have just released David Reiter’s first book for older children,
The Greenhouse Effect. It’s a novel of magical realism and humour that
deals some of the key issues facing us in language that will appeal to younger
From the back cover:
Tiger the cat moves to Canberra with his owner, he befriends a
local, Wanda the blue-tougued lizard, who is suspicious of introduced
Tiger even condescends to speak to the two mongrels next door, Cleon and Tony.
At the local park he meets Prince of the Sacred Pool, a royal bullfrog, and
his loyal followers; and Eudora, a raven with magical powers. Together they
must save Earth from the Great Danger, but first Tiger has to prove himself
to his new friends. He’s game, so long as it doesn’t involve missing
out on his Cat Gourmet!
Watch out Harry Potter!
The Greenhouse Effect is available for
order from the Lothian
web site, at local bookshops, or from David.
Order any IP poetry title and get a second one for 50% off.
Buy any two titles from the IP Shop via our order page to qualify.
Do it before 1 March and and we’ll
throw in free postage and handling (a flat $5 charge applies thereafter.
YD:21_1. Payment by cheque, money order or EFT only. Credit
card orders, add $2 per title.
Deal 2: Order an IP Six-pack for $66 + $6.
Your choice of any six IP titles published before 2003 for just $11
each, GST-inclusive, plus a flat $6 postage and handling
YD:21_2. Payment by cheque, money order or EFT only. Credit card orders,
FIPC members get a further
10% discount off the cost of either package
plus free postage. Sign up now and get the benefits of Club membership today.