Archive for the Authors and books Category

Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards

Posted in Authors and books with tags , , , , , , on August 21, 2009 by belindajeffrey

Yes, still from the old website and waiting for the transfer…

This morning I was fortunate enough to attend the announcement of the Premier’s Literary Awards at the State Library of Queensland. Click on the link to see all the short-listed books and authors. I’m delighted to see that Nam Lee’s, The Boat, was nominated in both the Fiction award and the Short Story collection category. Truly masterful writing and one of my favorite covers of all time.

Amy Barker, last year’s winner of the Emerging Author Manuscript category, this morning launched her book, Omega Park, and read from her published novel. She talked about how writing is her serious work and her job supports her writing. That writing is something she has no choice about. It must be done. I completely relate. Writing is so deeply important and essential to me, I cannot not do it. Perhaps thats why, as writers, awards are so important. Amy says that, although it sounds cliche, this award – and the publication that resulted from it – really has changed her life. Amy’s book will be launched at Avid Reader on the 3rd of September.

Brown Skin Blue is eligible for next year’s awards. (Gulping and crossing fingers in advance.)



Alain de Botton

Posted in Authors and books with tags , , , , , on August 19, 2009 by belindajeffrey

Ok, so I’m still posting from my old site, but not for long. Just waiting for the website wires and dentrites to realign themselves – within the day.

I came across this article about International author and philosopher, Alain de Botton, who is now writer in residence at London’s Heathrow Airport – which is such a cool idea. Ok, so his book is about Airports and travel but I love the idea of writing in a public space. The act of observation and interaction while writing. It’s such a different process than sitting at one’s desk in isolation and relying upon the concerted efforts of the inner mind.

I find that my mind opens up differently in a public space. Not just about what is going on around me, but it allows a different kind of ‘free association.’ In the act of distracting myself with who is walking by, what they are wearing, how they dress, what they say and what philosophical ideas this might trigger in my own mind, my subconscious is momentarily freed from the direct act of attention. My writing is fresher and more original. It is more organic and less cognitive. It’s a great part of my daily writing practice. I wonder if I can squeeze Brisbane Airport into my current novel set in 1956 on the Murray River in South Australia. Better let my subconscious percolate on that one.

I ran Alain’s event when he came to Brisbane and we sat 1200 people and I turned away hundreds of eager fans. After listening to this man’s presentation, I can see why he’s so popular. You can view his Brisbane gig on my youtube channel.


Swallow The Air

Posted in Authors and books with tags , , , on August 12, 2009 by belindajeffrey


I’ve just finished reading Tara June Winch’s, Swallow The Air. What a beautiful piece of lyrical writing. Here’s a snippet from the Sydney Morning Herald about it. Follow the link for the full review. I also love the cover!

First-time writing can be so flat and drab it scarcely draws breath, or so purple and greasy it makes a reader’s jaw grind. But the prose style of author Tara June Winch is so unapologetically poetic and vivid that at times it makes the reader draw breath, without the cringe factor.


Five Stars

Posted in Authors and books with tags , , on August 12, 2009 by belindajeffrey

Delighted to find a 5 star review for Brown Skin Blue in this month’s Goodreading Magazine. Happy little writer.



Riding The Black Cockatoo

Posted in Authors and books on July 31, 2009 by belindajeffrey


Last night I had the pleasure of sitting alongside three other authors for a discussion about how we came to have a published book. There was Zachery Jane, Paul Tuckey, John Danalis and myself.

Lets just say I’m so glad John Danalis spoke last. His book is a personal account of what happened to him after voicing to his classmates in a lecture that his family had an Aboriginal skull on their mantlepiece. And it had been there for forty years. They called the skull Mary and Riding The Black Cockatoo is about what happened when John decided to return Mary to his (they discovered it was a male skull but kept the nick name) rightful burial place. The reconciliation, love and change this journey brought about in John himself, his family, and the wider Indigenous community was remarkable. Listening to John recount the story of the book and his personal journey was deeply moving and brought most of us to tears.

I now have this book beside my bed and plan to read it first chance I get.


Krissy Kneen

Posted in Authors and books with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 31, 2009 by belindajeffrey

Last night I went to the launch of Krissy Kneen’s debut sexual memoir, Affection. Paul Landymore – compete with kilt and boots – ran the evening’s event with style and humor. Benjamin Law was funny, charming and sincere and I suspect everyone will want him to launch their books in the future. Never have I seen so many flowers in one bookstore, no nor so much affection for a writer who truly deserved this moment. In fact I love  Krissy and her book so much I was happy to abdicate my crown – of the Avid reader sales record – to her.

Krissy’s publicist, Cora Kipling, and her editor, Mandy Brett, flew to Brisbane to be there last night. In fact, all of Mandy’s Brisbane authors were in the one room. Krissy Kneen, Kirsten Reid and, soon to be published, Christopher Currie. It seems that if you want a shot with Text Publishing, you must first work at Avid Reader.

This book will fascinate and confront you. It may well reduce you to tears. For what is most surprising about this book is not the sexual content, but the vulnerability. It makes your heart feel raw for all the right reasons.

Go out now and buy this book!

Reviewed by Adair Jones