Monthly Archives: February 2013

On an Edward St Aubyn bender

Imagine that you hear a rich and beautiful voice in the next room. The speaker is articulate, uses apt similes and metaphors, and entertains with a sardonic wit. You move closer the better to appreciate the performance. You realise that the story the beautiful voice is telling is a dark one, featuring rich but dysfunctional and miserable people. Some of

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Which poisonous yellow book?

Sepia photo of Oscar Wilde holding a book that has been digitally coloured yellow

The secret of Raoul, Dorian and Oscar “’Zola,’ said Mr Gorby thoughtfully, taking down a flimsy yellow book rather tattered. ‘I’ve heard of him; if his novels are as bad as his reputation I shouldn’t care to read them.” Fergus Hume, The Mystery of a Hansom Cab (1886), Chapter 6   “I prefer books … in yellow covers.” The blackmailer

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The real cost of e-books

In ‘Body and Soul: Copyright law and enforcement in the age of the electronic book’ (Australian Book Review, September 2012), Matt Rubinstein raises some interesting points about how writers might continue to make a living. Readers who want more new books have a vested interest in this, and I recommend Matt’s essay as fascinating reading in its own right. In

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What is a writer’s time worth?

How will writers and publishers continue to supply you, the reader, with new books? How will you, the writer, earn a living and protect your intellectual property? Who is really ripping off writers: publishers, pirates or libraries? I’d like to hear your opinions about what publishing models might work for readers and writers. How you get books What the writer receives

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I wish I’d known that

“I wish I knew when I left high school that I could actually work as a full-time writer for a living. Then I mightn’t have spent years at university getting a BA and a Dip Ed and then a few more years doing other jobs while writing part-time on the side. I could have just got on with the job

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Don’t judge this book by its cover

Half of the Human Race by Anthony Quinn “They melted away from one another into the khaki crush of men waiting by ladders. Back among his company, with all eyes fixed on him, Will felt his limbs move with the slowed, dislocated sensation of a dream: his actions no longer seemed his own. Some stranger was inhabiting his body, directing

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