My first visit, with colleagues from NEW Writers Group Inc and Code-Mixing Poetry, to the annual zine fair at the Museum of Contemporary Art. A splendid event attended by large and curious crowds during the period of the Sydney Writers’ Festival. We were not the fanciest stall, but we displayed many editions of our publications, ranging from NWG Inc’s photocopied and badly stapled first attempt at ZineWest, to the lovely Romanian/Australian anthologies of Mihaela Cristescu. Sold a few titles and talked a great deal about the value of writers collaborating.Photos by Mihaela Cristescu.
Category Archives: Books
Lachlans, Old Government House, was a charming setting for Rhetoric Images 2nd March. I haven’t time for a detailed report but Code-Mixing Poetry (FB Page) has photos and bios. I love the way Mihaela Cristescu welcomes music and art into her literary events. It was an honor to present beside writers Carol Amos, Jason Gray, Šime Knežević, and soprano Felicity Amos. The collage is blurry – all from old books I read as a child and have survived umpteen house moves. I was an early reader and also dived into Dickens and Shaw, but the books about nature were the treasured ones. Of course then I grew up and read other stuff… Collage: UK waders, my favorite bird as a kid, the Eastern Rosella (Aus.) and my favorite writer back then, Konrad Lorenz (who is being groomed by a Jackdaw). Cristescu gave us all the unusual chance to reflect openly on what influenced our writing and thinking.
From top clockwise: Jason Gray, Carol Amos, Mihaela Cristescu, Group with Felicity Amos, top row centre, Šime Knežević
2019 fun with writing
Been working with Carol Amos and Mihaela Cristescu in preparation for a busy year. We have been writing, editing, talking and eating rather well. Our first three events are all in collaboration with other people … and then there’s the rest of 2019
NEW Writers’ Group Inc welcomes writers back to UNE Sydney in search of great characters (PPT and discussion) and a laugh about love (Valentine’s Open Mic Comp – with an emphasis on humor – there are book awards!) February 9
Lachlan’s Old Government House for RHETORIC IMAGES which involves images, champagne, a soprano, lots of hats, revelations from writers … March 2
Launch of Between Dusk and Dawn – Cristescu’s third Romanian/Australian anthology at the State Library of New South Wales – which will also feature imagery, music, readings and great food… not sure if we’re wearing hats … March 23
Between Dusk and Dawn
On Mihaela Cristecu’s FB Page Code-Mixing Poetry there are images and videos of the recent launch in Romania of her latest Romanian/Australian anthology, Between Dusk and Dawn. It is an honour to have helped out with the works written in English and a delight to see some of our Western Sydney colleagues’ work represented.
Early in 2019 there will be the Sydney launch of this volume published by Editura Sfantul lerarh Nicolae with readings from Australian contributors.
On The Wallaby Track
There is something disconcerting about launching one anthology On The Wallaby Track while acquiring work for the next Between Dusk and Dawn (especially when a few writers are contributing to both) and being simultaneously on the cusp of promoting a different anthology altogether ie the 2018 ZineWest. Bi-lingual poet Mihaela Cristescu, who heads the Romanian/Australian project, does an excellent job however of co-ordinating multiple tasks and inspires me to keep up.
I’m delighted to co-edit the English inclusions, which seem to be having a conversation in richly different voices. Lucky are those who can read all the works, Romanian and English.
On the Wallaby Track
NSW State Library, 24th March, 2018
Metcalfe Auditorium, 11:15 for 11:30 am
with Anamaria Beligan and Luke Carman.
Editing projects 2016/17
Keeping the amateur editing gig to two zines this year. Last year I edited or co-edited four little journals. Enjoy it though I did, in 2017 it will be just ZineWest and Mihaela Cristescu’s next anthology: “On the Wallaby Track”.
ZineWest 16: here’s our eminent judge Luke Carman and Julie Owens MP (with prize at ready) congratulating writers.
Every ZW looks a bit different despite sticking to a basic A5 white cover. Front image by Geoff Sellman and back cover by Robert Frost
Co-edited the first of Mihaela Cristescu’s anthologies to include a strong line up of Australians writing in English. Love Luminita Serbanescu’s artwork.
Also in 2016 I helped a friend self-publish an anthology (which sold out) and finally, I played back-up for the editor of NWG’s financial members’ anthology.
Pounding the Pavement in 2017
Mihaela Cristescu and NEW Writers’ Group Inc are already planning Mihaela’s next event at the State Library of NSW booked for 25th March, 2017. Pounding the Pavement is being written right now – an anthology featuring Cristescu’s poetry with guests writing in English and Romanian. SEE
FB Page: Code-Mixing Poetry
Some photos from this year, 2016.
The Music of Language (and the Romanian Connection)
Romanian speaking writers associated with New Writers Group inc (Parramatta) have kindly mentioned the support received from other Sydney creatives (who speak/read no Romanian) and the obvious fact to me is that the gratitude should flow as much if not more in the other direction. There is nothing quite like a keen bi-lingual or multi-lingual writer to freshen up some concepts of what is literature and in how many languages and continents it can be shared. How do writers who develop their “voices” in one language move the authenticity (a loaded word) of those voices into another language? Well, on Friday evening, 27th March 2015, some answers were presented. Our gracious host, Mrs Oriana Acevedo, Multicultural Consultant, NSW State Library, opened the launch of two bi-lingual poetry anthologies, one by Mihaela Cristescu the other by Loredana Tudor Tomescu. The setting was the historic Dixson Room of the LIbrary’s Mitchell Wing. The Consul General of Romania in Sydney, Floricel Mocanu, attended; Mady Slabascu and Catalin Anastase performed readings brilliantly in both Romanian and English; and Sue Chamoun supplied Lebanese delicacies at supper. Above all, I’m reminded how close language is to music. Here are some visual highlights:
The Question of the Ninth
“It seems that the Ninth is a limit. He who wants to go beyond it must pass away. It seems as if something might be imparted to us in the Tenth which we ought not yet to know, for which we are not ready. Those who have written a Ninth stood too close to the hereafter.”
Just because Mahler died while writing his 10th symphony doesn’t mean anything to me, I try not to pick up more superstitions than the ones already grafted into my subconscious. And after all, counting/numbering musical works is a fraught business. Nonetheless I like Schoenberg’s famous line (Schoenberg declined to complete the work). I think writers (of books) often seem less than ready to write their topic or style and we can imagine we all have an invisible fence – but I figure Schoenberg included readers/listeners at that dangerous barrier. Provoking. Thanks to Classic FM for an illuminating session.
Collision Course – Kerryn Higgs
If it bothers you that we cannot sustain the life of “growth” we currently lead, yet we fail to prick the fantasy and get pragmatic, try Collision Course – endless growth on a finite planet – for a run-down on the debate in plain language by an author of incisive intellect. Launched at Gleebooks