Wednesday, May 20, 2009

AHWA NEWS DIGEST [01.05.09-15.05.09]

The following digest of recent horror news is compiled from pieces published to HorrorScope and the Australian Horror Writers' Association website.

Sydney Writers' Festival

The 12th Sydney Writers' Festival will be held from Monday 18 to Sunday 24 May, at venues throughout Sydney, Australia. Click through for a quick taste of program strands that may appeal to horror writers and connoisseurs.

DUFF voting to close May 17

Voting for the Down Under Fan Fund will close on May 17 at midnight. You can download a PDF voting form at Jean Weber's DUFF site. The 2009 DUFF Fellowship finalists are Emma Hawkes, Chris Nelson-Lee, Alison Barton, David Cake and Grant Watson.

Emerging Writers' Festival
The Emerging Writers' Festival (EWF) exists to promote the interests of emerging writers - to improve their opportunities for professional development and their engagement with the broader public. The 2009 Emerging Writers Festival will be held in various venues around Melbourne, from May 22 to May 31.

Robert McKee’s Story Seminar
Learn why many writers and filmmakers around the world revere Robert McKee as the greatest story and screenwriting teacher of our time. Story Seminar is being held in Melbourne at The Kino Cinema on Collins Street from June 19 to 21 and in Sydney at The Chauvel Cinema, Paddington from June 26 to 28. The seminar runs for three days from 9am – 8.30pm.

Justina Robson at Parrish's Patch in May
Justina Robson is special guest at the Parrish's Patch forum on the 29th, 30th, 31st of May.

NIDA performance writing short courses
NIDA (National Institute of Dramatic Arts) are offering a couple of performance writing short courses as part of their Open Program - Dramatic Writing Short Course and Writing Short Film Scripts Short Course.

Terra Incognita podcast featuring Bill Congreve
TISFPodcast #007 is now available, with Bill Congreve reading his story Souls Along The Meridian, and Keith Stevenson's review of Maria Quinn's The Gene Thieves.

PNAN Youth Arts Festival
The PNAN Youth Arts Festival is dedicated to showcasing the hottest young and emerging talent (aged 16-25 in NSW). PNAN accepts works in three categories: short film, graphic design and creative writing, with the main creative stipulation being that all works feature some reference to drug and alcohol issues.

Continuum Trivia Night

Continuum is proud to present an evening of knowledge both trivial and diverting, on Saturday 30th of May at the Elephant and Wheelbarrow. Prizes will be awarded for correct answers, entering the premises in a lucky fashion, and at the judges' discretion. Please RSVP via the Facebook page, or by email.

Dorchester Publishing opens to email submissions

Dorchester Publishing, publisher of US mass market horror imprint Leisure Books, is now accepting general novel submissions via email. Full submission guidelines are available at the Dorchester Publishing website.

2009 Katharine Susannah Prichard Speculative Fiction Competition final call
Entries close on 29 May 2009, and writers of all ages are invited to apply. Stories must be between 1500 and 3500 words, with all forms of speculative fiction welcomed. Further information can be found on the Katharine Susannah Prichard Foundation website.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth movie deal

Carrie Ryan's YA horror novel, The Forest of Hands and Teeth (published by Gollancz UK), is soon to be adapted for the big screen. Alan Nevins of Renaissance Literary & Talent, who brokered the deal on behalf of Jim McCarthy at Dystel Literary, sold the film rights to the book to Seven Star Pictures (K-11, forthcoming).

The Challenge - Name The 'Nameless'
The official announcement of the opening of one of the biggest, most prestigious genre competitions in Australia will soon appear on the AHWA/HorrorScope sites. This story is destined to become a piece of Australian speculative fiction history. If you are game, you will soon have a chance to not only bring this story to a climax, but also to name it.

Midnight Echo seeking graphic art submissions
David Schembri, Art Director for Midnight Echo: The Magazine of the Australian Horror Writers Association, is issuing a call for graphic art submissions. For full details on all submission formats for Midnight Echo, visit

2009 Ditmar Award finalists
The Ditmar sub-committee has released the Australian SF ("Ditmar") Awards finalists for 2009. This ballot honours the best works of science fiction, fantasy, and horror published by Australians in 2008 as nominated by members of Australian fandom. Click through to view finalists in all categories. Voting is open now to members of the 2008 Australian Natcon (Swancon), and 2009 Natcon (Conjecture). Further information on the Ditmar Award can be found here or at the Conjecture website.

Richard Harland's Writing Tips
Award-winning Australian author Richard Harland, best known for his cult novels The Vicar of Morbing Vyle, The Black Crusade, and his latest release, Worldshaker, has compiled an exhaustive list of writing tips for aspiring authors. Harland's labour of love is a 145-page website of tips for fantasy, speculative fiction and genre writers - and its free. Harland says he took four months off from his own fiction writing—“it started out as a small service to the writing community and just kept growing and growing!” The tips are online at

2008 Shirley Jackson Award ballot
The 2008 Shirley Jackson Awards ballot, honouring works of outstanding dark fiction from around the world, was recently announced. Two Australians have been shortlisted this year: Margo Lanagan for her novel Tender Morsels and Julia Leigh for her novella Disquiet. Click through to view finalists in all categories. The Shirley Jackson Awards will be presented on Sunday, July 12th 2009, at Readercon 20 in Burlington, Massachusetts, USA. Elizabeth Hand, Readercon Guest of Honour, and author of Generation Loss, which won the 2007 Shirley Jackson Award for Best Novel, will act as host.

Submitting News

If you have news about Australian and New Zealand Horror publishing and film, or news of professional development opportunities in the field, feel free to submit news to Talie Helene, AHWA News Editor. Just visit HorrorScope, and click on the convenient email link. (International news is not unwelcome, although relevance to Antipodean literary arts practitioners is strongly preferred.)

For information on the Australian Horror Writers' Association, visit

This AHWA NEWS DIGEST has been compiled, written, and republished in select Australian horror haunts by Talie Helene. Currently archived at the
AHWA MySpace page, Southern Horror, and Darklands, and hosted by AHWA members Felicity Dowker, Brenton Tomlinson, Scott Wilson, and Jeff Ritchie (Scary Minds).

If you would like to support the AHWA News effort by hosting a copy of the AHWA News Digest on your blog or website,
contact Talie to receive a fully formatted HTML edition of the digest by email.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the info. I must go over to AHWA and set up my member page. Very remiss/slack of me.