Ditmar Awards 2022

The Australian Ditmar Awards close in a week! If you had a fave story, novel, collection, novella, etc, please do jump in and vote. The more voters, the greater the field!

This is a list of lots of eligible work. There was stuff published that isn’t on the list! So if it was published in 2021 and you loved it, vote for that.

This is my eligible stuff:

Short story collection:

Tool Tales (with Ellen Datlow), IFWG

Short stories:

  • “The Steering Wheel Club”, Giving the Devil His Due, Running Wild Press.
  • “Exurbia”,  Out of the Ruins, Titan Books.
  • “The King in Yella” Under Twin Suns: Alternate Histories of the Yellow Sign, Hippocampus Press.
  • “The Red Shrine (Fingerless and Double-mouthed)” Spawn: Weird Horror Tales About Pregnancy, Birth And Babies, IFWG Publishing Australia.
  • “Winter Sweet, Winter Grieve” Grimdark Magazine 25.
  • “Corners” Weird Fiction Review 11

And here’s the form to vote!

Aaron Dries, Joseph Ashley-Smith and I are about to get started on Season Two of our Let the Cat in Podcast, where we talk about ideas, inspirations, embarrassments and more. Last season we had an array of amazing people on: Isobelle Carmody, Sean Williams, Ellen Datlow, Garth Nix, Kathe Koja, Lynda E Rucker, Brian Evenson, JS Breukelaar, Paul Tremblay, John Langan, Melinda Smith and Dan O’Malley. I re-listen to all of these episodes to give me a creative jolt when I need one.

I’m trying to decide what to talk about. What’s been inspiring you lately?

You can listen in here to last season:


Award Eligibility 2021

It’s been a weird couple of years in publishing, that’s for sure! I’ve had lots out this year, some of it stories I sold ages ago. So while this list looks impressive, it demonstrates a few years of sales!

I’m really happy to have two books out, the non-fiction chapbook from Brain Jar Press and the marvellous short fiction collection with Ellen Datlow from IFWG.

“The Red Shrine”, in Spawn, editor Deb Sheldon, IFWG Publishing, July 2021, 2500 words

“Corners”, in Weird Fiction Review 11, Centipede Press,  January 2021, 2500 words

“The King In Yella”,in  Under Twin Suns,  editor James Chambers, Hippocampus Press, June 2021 4600 words

Capturing Ghosts on the Page, BrainJar Press, non-fiction chapbook

Tool Tales, short story collection with Ellen Datlow,  IFWG Publishing, June 2021

“Exurbia”, in Out of the Ruins, Titan, editor Preston Grassman, November 2021 2600 words

Only Dead Men Do Not Lie: The Trials of the Formosans” , in Sisterhood, Chaosium Press, editor Nate Pederson, May 2021 4500 words

Warp and Weft”, in  Professor Charlatan Bardot’s Travel Anthology, Dark Moon Books, editor Eric J. Guignard, November 2021 5500 words

“The Steering Wheel Club”, in Giving the Devil His Due, Running Wild Press, editor Rebecca Brewer, October 2021 3600 words

“Winter Sweet, Winter Grieve” in Grimdark Magazine #25, Grimdark Publishing, January 2021, 3000 words

The fabulous Tricia Reeks at Meerkat Press organised a Blogtour for the launch of my novella Into Bones Like Oil. I got to talk to all sorts of interesting people, to make a play list, to answer questions and more. Links are here! I’ll add the last few links when they go live.


Meerkat Press – Blog Tour Kick-Off – 11-Nov

MyLifeMyBooksMyEscape – Interview- 11-Nov

Crystal’s Library – Book Review – 11-Nov

Dolce Bellezza – Book Review – 12-Nov

Jessica Belmont – Book Review – 12-Nov

Speculative Fiction Showcase – Excerpt – 12-Nov

JB’s Bookworms with Brandy Mulder – Excerpt – 13-Nov

Rockin’ Book Reviews – Guest Post – 14-Nov

TKentWrites – Top 10 List: Old Houses – 15-Nov

WritingForums.com – Interview – 18-Nov

Big Indie Books – Playlist – 19-Nov

A.E. Siraki Writer – Book Review – 19-Nov

Books I Like – Book Review – 20-Nov

The Qwillery – Excerpt – 20 -Nov

Seven Acre Books – Book Review – 21-Nov

The Bookish Crypt – Book Review – 22-Nov

More2read – Interview – 22-N


I’m flying off to the US next week for Stokercon! I absolutely can’t wait. I’ll also be in Washington, NYC, New Jersey, Chicago and Dallas.
Here’s my Stokercon schedule:
Thursday, May 9



Friday, May 10




Mass signing and Icecream Social
Saturday, May 11





Stoker Awards
Sunday, May 12


Very busy! You’ll be able to find me in the bar/cafe/whatever is the social spot. Looking forward to conversations with old friends and new.

From a convention ten minutes travel from home, to a convention 30 hours travel from home!


We’re leaving Thursday morning for America. I’m so excited. Can’t wait to see family and friends and to attend my first World Fantasy Convention since Brighton. I love World Fantasy and am looking forward to picking up my book bag full of goodies!


Oh, and I’m Guest of Honor alongside Aliette de Bodard, Michael J Walsh, Tom Kidd and Scott Edelman!

Here’s my list of official events. I’m not keeping track of all the unofficial events!


Sunday October 28th

New Jersey


Meet and Greet the author

Factory Fuel Co Café

2 Stangle Road, Flemington NJ



Baltimore World Fantasy Convention


Thursday 1 November

8pm Opening Ceremony

9pm Ice Cream Social

11pm Poetry Slam, hosted by the fabulous Linda Addison

Friday 2 November

4pm Q and A with Ellen Datlow

8pm Mass Signing


Saturday 3 November

10am My presentation on the Australian landscape and how it affects our storytelling.

5pm Reading. Not sure what yet!

6.15pm Aussie Party. Hosted by Garth Nix, with tickets by Kathleen Jennings!


Sunday 4 November

World Fantasy Award Banquet 12.30

4pm World Fantasy Award Judging Panel


Wed 7 November


8pm – 10pm

Bearded Lady Mystic Museum

3204 W Magnolia Boulevard, Burbank, CA

Reading with Lisa Morton, Che Baker, Kathleen Kaufman, a contortionist,  and a sword Swallower.

$15 includes wine and snacks






My local SF convention, Conflux, is on again this year. I’ll be launching books, teaching a workshop, helping host a Frankenstein party, and more!


Here are the details:

Saturday, 29 September, 1.30:  Mary Shelley’s Legacy. Guest of Honour Rob Hood and I will talk about all things Shelley.


Saturday, 29 September, 5pm. Book Launch! Please join me in conjunction with Conflux 14 and Verity 112 as I launch my two new books.

Tide of Stone, a novel, is an exploration of crime and punishment set on an isolated Time Ball Tower. Edited by Lee Murray, it comes from Omnium Gatherium Books.
A Primer to Kaaron Warren is a short story collection, edited by Eric Guignard of Dark Moon Books. It contains reprints, illustrations and one new and very nasty story.

Lee Murray from New Zealand will launch the books. Verity 112 have invented a cocktail just for the event. There will be a cash bar, yummy snacks available, a door prize or two (warning: they will be very Kaaron-esque door prizes) and more. The bar is open until late and I’m hoping people will stay to chat, listen to music, maybe dance!

For those with a taste for malt, we will also have a whisky tasting, known as ‘Whiskycon”, at Verity 112 after the launch. Hosted by local Canberra writer Rob Hood, Whiskycon requires a booking and payment. If you’re keen, comment here and Tim Napper, the organiser, will get back to you.

Place: Verity 112, 112 Alinga St Civic (the bus interchange)

Time: 5pm till late



Sunday, 30 September, 12.30-2.30 Workshop at the Green Shed Underground in the city. This shop is full of second hand clothing. We’ll spend some time deciding on characters, then dressing ourselves to suit. Inhabiting the (possibly haunted) clothing of a person helps us to understand them better. There will be a courtesy bus from the convention for this one but you do need to sign up for it.


Sunday, 30 September, 3.45. Rob Hood and I will host an afternoon tea for Frankenstein’s 200th birthday! This should be fun. We might try to recapture the atmosphere of that isolated house…


Monday, 1 October, 10.30 am: Can Horror be Funny? A panel with Lee Murray from New Zealand and Rob Hood.


Monday, 1 October, 2.30pm: Judging the World Fantasy Awards. I’ll chat about the good and the bad books, show some of the covers off, and talk about what you need to do to stand out. I’ll have lots of the submitted books for sale, with proceeds going to a literacy progamme or perhaps a sponsorship. This to be decided! If you have any thoughts on this, please let me know.




This is a great go-to reading list, with staff choosing their favourite books read in 2017. J. S. Breukelaar , author of Aletheia puts The Grief Hole on her list!

I won!

Absolutely thrilled to win this award. It’s my fourth time winning it, and it carries a lot of meaning to me, because it celebrates small press and Canberran writers. Very, very proud!

Thanks to the ACT Writers Centre for making it all happen, and to the judges Anna Snoekstra and Robyn Cadwallader, both writers I admire greatly.

Thanks also to IFWG Publishing for continued support and enthusiasm. Stephen McCracken showed up for the awards, which means a lot to me!

This means The Grief Hole won the Canberra Critics Award, the Aurealis Award, the Ditmar Award, the Shadows Award and the ACT Writers and Publishers Award.





Baltimore, 2018

News is out: I’m a judge for the World Fantasy Awards 2018. Very happy to be taking on this challenge. It involves an enormous amount of reading in a genre I love, which will give me a good, rounded knowledge of the state of the business. I really like having that overall understanding, having read for international awards before. It makes you aware of writers and publishers you wouldn’t otherwise be aware of, and gives you something to talk about when people ask you what you’re reading!

From past experience, friendships form in the process, and I’m pleased about that, too.

So when I come to World Fantasy next year as a Guest of Honor, I’ll also be there as a World Fantasy Award judge. Busy year ahead!