Stella, and a digression on envy, work, inadequacy

The Stella Prize 2013, the inaugural prize, was awarded last week to Carrie Tiffany, for Mateship with Birds, which you know I enjoyed very much (here's my Big Issue interview with Carrie from last year). She very generously donated $10,000 of the prize money back to the shortlist, noting that it was a selfish act because it gave … Continue reading Stella, and a digression on envy, work, inadequacy

The epic qualities of outwardly ordinary lives: By Nightfall and Michael Cunningham in Australia

By Nightfall, Michael Cunningham, HarperCollins (Aus pb, Aus ebook, US and Kindle, UK) Over the past few days I’ve been in the audience of four sessions featuring my favourite American author Michael Cunningham. Cunningham’s latest novel is By Nightfall. I've drafted a few posts on it since I read it, but was never able to adequately … Continue reading The epic qualities of outwardly ordinary lives: By Nightfall and Michael Cunningham in Australia

Meeting Alex Miller part three: on cross-eyed novels, the time we have, and liberties of language

See also – part one: on the origins of a contemporary story and part two: on wisdom and imagination. My feature interview with Alex Miller on his new novel, Lovesong (Aus, US), was published in Readings Monthly. You can find it here.  When asked what his favourite is of all his novels, Miller smiled and … Continue reading Meeting Alex Miller part three: on cross-eyed novels, the time we have, and liberties of language

Melbourne launch of the Macquarie PEN Anthology of Australian Literature

The Red Rotunda at the Cowen Gallery at the State Library of Victoria is filled with silver-haired literary giants, and a young woman enters, sweaty and carrying two bags (she has walked from work). She sees a couple of familiar faces but is too intimidated to talk to them. She clasps a glass of champagne and … Continue reading Melbourne launch of the Macquarie PEN Anthology of Australian Literature