Thursday, November 29, 2012

So, in today's news of the most exciting thing ever--

We're going to be putting a pause on book ruminations for radio-play-of-a-book ruminations.

That's right! For any of those who haven't heard yet, Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere is being produced as a radio play slated for somewhere in the first 4 months of 2013 and includes such voices as James McAvoy, Natalie Dormer, Benedict Cumberbatch and Anthony Stuart Head.

Neverwhere "tells the story of Richard Mayhew, the strange girl Door and their adventures in Gaiman’s mythical “London Below.” This brilliant alterna-verse is populated with characters named for London landmarks (The Old Bailey), regions (The Angel Islington) and tube stops (The Black Friars). This story is Gaiman’s at his finest and delivers up the perfect blend of fairytale, myth, modern crime story and romance."(Read more here)

Cue me jumping up and down like an absolute fangirl! I will so be on this :D:D:D

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(photo and content thanks to

Monday, November 19, 2012

Belladonna Publishing

The lovely ladies at Belladonna Publishing are putting together a Black Apples anthology where they are looking for fairy tales

Here's what they say:

"Black Apples is an anthology of gothic fairytales starring the classic fairytale princess – but her ending is maybe not so happy, her quest is perhaps more grim and the darkness of the tale might just come from within…

The Princess might be someone we know, but she can also be a princess we’ve never heard of before. She may come from ancient times, or far into the future. She can be the heroine, or we might not see her on the pages at all – but the story must somehow evolve around the fairytale princess and/or her role as such – and have a dark twist… We’re looking for the beautiful, sensuous and sinister."

I have already submitted to them a short story set in the same world as Gothic (Shadows of Melbourne), entitled 'If you want to walk out of here, you have to learn how to crawl'.

The story is one of a girl who has wandered into the world of Fairie to follow her lover but, once there, it is devastatingly different. She is unable to adapt and finds herself almost lost to suffering. Because I am a soft hearted romantic, the male lead of this short story is in fact in love with his heroine, and he does everything he can to help her become safe, happy and sane again.

The story is further exciting to me because I have gotten a friend of mine Fyodor Krasniy to do the illustrations for this work.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Violin Fairy - Emilie Autumn

I'm lying in my bedroom. The Mists of Avalon lies open beside me, and the pages of the exercise book in which I'm working on my current short story are on the other side of me, with the pen marking the page.

On my bedside table, my dragon lamp is on and my lady with the dove candle holder has two candles burning. Amongst all this, there seems to be a heavy energy of magic and fantasy lingering in the room.

I've just brought music into my room. I'm not sure how much other writers use music to get into the mindset of their stories and / or characters. I know some writers who swear by soundtracks for particular stories of theirs, and can't write a word without one soundtrack or other playing in the background.

Me, I'm nowhere near that particular. Don't get me wrong, I love creating a magical atmosphere around me (see above, right? *grins*) but when it comes to music, I've only just started putting together playlists for my novels, and even when I wrote the first draft of my second novel Revelry, I forgot about the playlist until I'd finished writing.

One song that has just come on though, is Swallow by Punktorian, Violin Faery, musical artist, Emilie Autumn. For anyone who hasn't heard of this beautiful songstress and violinist, here, let me just say this:

I'm not a fairy but I need,
More of this life so I became,
This creature representing more to you than,
Just another girl,
And if I had a chance to change my mind,
I wouldn't for the world.

Not only is she gorgeous and incredibly talented, but she has two CDs out in completely different musical styles. Enchant holds towards a ye olde Victorian majesty, with such songs as Chambermaid and Rose Red, and the tune to Greensleeves is part of her song Juliet. Her second CD, named Opheliac, is inspired by Nine Inch Nails and has everything from Shakespeare quotes in the lyrics of the title track, to her own take on the Lolita story in Gothic Lolita.

Friday, November 2, 2012

"Gothic" and Fairy Folklore

I don't know when it was that my interest in the fantasy genre became a little bit more particular. I remember it wasn't that long ago that I couldn't conceive of a workable urban or mythical fantasy story.

I've written in a couple of different places now the story of my Honours year last year. I was fairly concentrated on my strict subject of fairy tales and Beauty and the Beast in particular and I just got to a point where I couldn't think about it anymore. I was a little bit ahead at the time and I thought to myself, What if I take a quick week off to just write something else. Something flippant. Something that I don't have to edit immediately or get right the first time.

That was the first draft of Gothic. It was a bit strange, actually. I'd told myself I wouldn't write a vampire story. Although I'm intrigued by the idea of writing an epic vampire novel, I just don't think that what I would put out there could compete with the multitudes of vampire fiction already in circulation. But then, Gothic isn't just a vampire story. It's also a story about a human girl, about family, about a community of werewolves. And when I thought about it that way, it didn't seem so daunting to put it out there, even in the midst of all the other vampire fiction.

In the next novel, Revelry, I'm going to be adding fairies to the mix for the first time.

In Celtic mythology, the Sidhe fairies (pronounced "shee") are seen almost as gods, or spirits of ancestors and nature of that culture. European folklore sees fairy kind as the sort who would steal human children and sometimes leave one of their own in their place. There have been countless stories and poems written around this folklore, including

"The Stolen Child" by Keith Donohue, based on the William Butler Yeats' poem of the same name. I absolutely loved this book. Donohue writes from the point of view of the group of fairies who group together to steal the child and leave a changeling in its place. He creates this beautiful mythology where every member of this group was once a stolen child, and in stealing new children and replacing them, they get to go back into the human world they've lived outside of for so long. This novel inspired a whole set of vignettes that I wrote a little over a year ago, some of which I am currently thinking of fixing up and compiling together in a book of short stories.